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Copyright for Librarians is a joint project of the Berkman Center for Internet and Society and EIFL, a consortium of libraries from 50 countries in Africa, Asia and Europe. The goal of the project is to provide librarians in developing and transitional countries information concerning copyright law.


Copyright for Librarians is a joint project of the  Berkman Center for Internet&Society  and EIFL, a consortium of libraries from 50 countries in Africa, Asia and Europe. The goal of the project is to provide librarians in developing and transitional countries information concerning copyright law. More specifically, it aspires to inform librarians concerning:

  • copyright law in general
  • the aspects of copyright law that most affect libraries
  • how librarians in the future could most effectively participate in the processes by which copyright law is interpreted and shaped.

How to use this course

The course materials can be used in three different ways. First, they can provide the basis for a self-taught course. A librarian can read the modules in sequence or focus on the modules that address issues that interest him or her.

Second, the course materials can be used in a traditional classroom-based course. In such a setting, the instructor will determine the pace at which the materials are read and will select topics for discussion. The instructor may find useful the Assignments we have included in the modules, but will likely pose additional questions as well.

Third and finally, the materials can be used in a distance-learning course. An instructor will guide the inquiry, but the librarians taking the course will participate remotely through their computers. To assist the instructors in such settings, we have included a discussion tool, originally developed at the Berkman Center, known as the Rotisserie. A manual explaining to instructors how they might use the Rotisserie is available  here . Instructions explaining to students how to sign up for and use the Rotisserie are available  here . This system can be used to facilitate conversations among the students concerning the Assignments we have included in each module. Alternatively, an instructor could identify different questions for discussion.


Not all users will have the time or interest to read all of the materials contained in this curriculum. Recognizing this, we have arranged and marked the materials in ways that should assist instructors and users in deciding how deeply to explore this subject. Specifically, the materials are organized into five levels:

  • Level 1 (appropriate for users who want a basic knowledge of how copyright law affects the work of librarians in developing and transitional countries): Read modules 1, 3-7. (In other words, skip the Introduction and modules 2, 8, and 9.)
  • Level 2 (appropriate for users who are also interested in the theory underlying copyright law and in the international dimensions of copyright law): Read the Introduction and all of the modules.
  • Level 3 (appropriate for use in a one-semester undergraduate course in this subject or for users who wish to obtain an in-depth understanding of the field and to see how legislatures and courts are struggling to refine and apply copyright law): Read all of the modules and, in addition, all of the documents marked with red links.
  • Level 4 (appropriate for use in a graduate-level course in this subject): Read all of the modules and, in addition, all of the documents marked with red and green links.
  • Level 5 (appropriate for a faculty member preparing to teach this subject): Read all of the modules and, in addition, all of the documents marked with red, green, and blue links.

Off-line usage

Some users will find it more convenient to use these materials off-line. They are provided for off-line use in two formats. First, the materials have been packaged as a  ISO  that can be  written to a CD-ROM  and viewed with any browser (such as Chrome , Firefox , Internet Explorer , Opera , Safari , etc). Second, the materials have also been packaged as a  PDF  document that can be  viewed and printed  with any PDF viewer (such as  Adobe AcrobatEvinceGhostScriptPreview , etc).

An effort has been made to include all links to relevant material in both the CD-ROM and printable versions. However, in order to access content that is external to the course materials contained on this site, an internet connection is necessary.


The course materials prepared by the project are licenced under a  Creative Commons Attribution license . Librarians and the public at large are encouraged to use, distribute, translate, modify, and build upon these materials, provided that they give EIFL and the Berkman Center appropriate credit.


This course does not offer legal advice. It provides general information concerning the principles that underlie the copyright system, and it indicates how various concrete problems are resolved in most countries. It cannot, however, provide reliable guidance concerning how a court in a specific country would respond to a specific set of facts. Thus, if you find yourself coming close to any of the legal boundaries described in these materials, you should consult a lawyer in your own jurisdiction.

Help us improve the course

We hope to update and refine these materials periodically. To do so, we need help from users. Please let us know if a piece of information contained in a module is incorrect or out of date. If you have suggestions concerning either the content of the modules or the way in which the content is presented, we are eager to hear them. Finally, librarians are strongly encouraged to let us know how the issues addressed in the modules are handled in their home countries; we will try to include that information in future versions.

You can make these suggestions in either of two ways. First, if you would like your suggestion to be available to the public, please click on the "Discussion" tab at the top of the module page to which your suggestion is relevant. Second, you can simply email us at  cfl-feedback@cyber.law.harvard.edu .

We look forward to your contributions.

The EIFL and Berkman teams

Questions & Answers

where we get a research paper on Nano chemistry....?
Maira Reply
nanopartical of organic/inorganic / physical chemistry , pdf / thesis / review
what are the products of Nano chemistry?
Maira Reply
There are lots of products of nano chemistry... Like nano coatings.....carbon fiber.. And lots of others..
Even nanotechnology is pretty much all about chemistry... Its the chemistry on quantum or atomic level
no nanotechnology is also a part of physics and maths it requires angle formulas and some pressure regarding concepts
Preparation and Applications of Nanomaterial for Drug Delivery
Hafiz Reply
Application of nanotechnology in medicine
what is variations in raman spectra for nanomaterials
Jyoti Reply
I only see partial conversation and what's the question here!
Crow Reply
what about nanotechnology for water purification
RAW Reply
please someone correct me if I'm wrong but I think one can use nanoparticles, specially silver nanoparticles for water treatment.
yes that's correct
I think
Nasa has use it in the 60's, copper as water purification in the moon travel.
nanocopper obvius
what is the stm
Brian Reply
is there industrial application of fullrenes. What is the method to prepare fullrene on large scale.?
industrial application...? mmm I think on the medical side as drug carrier, but you should go deeper on your research, I may be wrong
How we are making nano material?
what is a peer
What is meant by 'nano scale'?
What is STMs full form?
scanning tunneling microscope
how nano science is used for hydrophobicity
Do u think that Graphene and Fullrene fiber can be used to make Air Plane body structure the lightest and strongest. Rafiq
what is differents between GO and RGO?
what is simplest way to understand the applications of nano robots used to detect the cancer affected cell of human body.? How this robot is carried to required site of body cell.? what will be the carrier material and how can be detected that correct delivery of drug is done Rafiq
analytical skills graphene is prepared to kill any type viruses .
Any one who tell me about Preparation and application of Nanomaterial for drug Delivery
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
what school?
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
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Source:  OpenStax, Copyright for librarians. OpenStax CNX. Jun 15, 2011 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11329/1.2
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