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Series

2011

University of South Carolina

Fair use

Articles 1 - 2 of 2

Full-Text Articles in Law

The Forgotten Right Of Fair Use, Ned Snow Jan 2011

The Forgotten Right Of Fair Use, Ned Snow

Faculty Publications

Free speech was once an integral part of copyright law; today it is all but forgotten. At common law, principles of free speech protected those who expressed themselves by using another's expression. Free speech determined whether speakers had infringed a copyright. To prevail on a copyright claim, then, a copyright holder would need to prove that the speaker’s use fell outside the scope of permissible speech - or in other words, that the use was not fair. Where uncertainty prevented that proof, fair use would protect speakers from the suppression of copyright. Today, however, all this has changed. Copyright ...


Fair Use As A Matter Of Law, Ned Snow Jan 2011

Fair Use As A Matter Of Law, Ned Snow

Faculty Publications

Courts have recently abandoned the centuries-old practice of construing fair use as an issue of fact for the jury. Fair use now stands as an issue of law for the judge. This change is threatening traditional contours of copyright law that protect fair-use speech. Courts, then, must reform their current construction of fair use by returning to its origins— fair use as a factual matter for the jury. Yet even if courts do construe fair use as a matter of fact, the question remains whether courts should ever decide fair use as a matter of law. To answer this question ...