Copyright law in the United States protects original works (published or unpublished) in any medium (print or digital). Examples of works include literary and scholarly works, emails, letters, website content, audiovisuals, photographs, images, graphics, etc.Using copyrighted material without permission may constitute copyright infringement and result in significant civil and even criminal penalties. Permission will need to be secured to reuse copyrighted materials and in most cases, there will be a fee to reuse the materials.
To avoid copyright infringement, students are highly encouraged to use materials from:
A work in the public domain is a work that is no longer protected by U.S. copyright law because copyright protection has expired. Works published before 1923 in the United States and works created by U.S. government employees as part of their official duties are in the public domain, with some exceptions. The copyright term for works created after 1923 depends upon a number of factors, including date of publication and whether the copyright was renewed. Generally, works created after 1978 enjoy protection for the life of the creator plus 70 years. Materials in the public domain can be used for clinical and scholarly purposes with attribution noted to the source.
A work licensed under one of the six Creative Commons licenses typically permit reuse of material as long as attribution is noted. For some licenses, users must license their new material under the identical terms. See Creative Commons Licenses for more information.
Review the information or properties related to the image or other material, abide by any policies as stipulated and provide attribution noted to the source. As an example, the following image contains a public domain notice link for usage rights information. This image can be used with attribution noted to the source.
Another example of where usage rights information can be found is noted in the Information link. This image can be used with attribution noted to the source.
Source: Henry Vandyke Carter [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons. https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Gray911.png
Attribution is providing source information (a reference) to the material used to provide credit for the source and to allow others to access the material. Some materials note specifically how attribution should be noted; others do not. If no attribution specifics are noted with the material being used, use the link to the material and other related information.