Copyright exemptions

The Act allows for limited use of copyright works without licence or payment.  The main exemptions are fair dealing, education, libraries and archives.

Fair dealing

There is no legal definition for fair dealing. It is intended to strike a reasonable balance between the economic interests of the copyright holder and the information needs of the user. So reproduction of copyright material for research and private study is allowed, although there is no exact definition of how much you can copy. It is allowed if it is, as the Act states, "for a purpose and to an extent that will not unreasonably prejudice the interests of the copyright holder". Under fair dealing you are not allowed to make a copy or photocopy it so that it can be made available to more than one person. This may be covered in the educational exemptions and in the terms of the ICLA (Irish Copyright Licencing Agency) licence.

Educational uses

The use of author’s works for certain educational purposes is permitted. These include the use of the work in examinations, and the inclusion of a short passage from the work in an anthology for schools.

Libraries and Archives

Libraries and archives are given limited rights to copy works under certain conditions. Public libraries and certain educational establishments may also lend works without infringing the rights of the author.



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