Hi. This is an old, unmaintained blog. You may find these sites more to your liking:

Carson Brackney: This is my primary site.

Ad Astra Traffic: Content production/article writing service.

Ad Astra Traffic Team: For those who'd like to get writing gigs with Ad Astra.

Friday, February 17, 2006

More on fair use...

I had an interesting exchange with Jonathan from Plagiarism Today (a great site that everyone with an interest in these matters should visit) yesterday about the Fair Use doctrine.

He told me he thought those who use software like Instant Article Generator may fall outside of the purview of the Fair Use exception due, at least in part, to their failure to provide appropriate attribution for the sentences the program culls from other source material.

I did a little bit of investigation and found that he had a point. Attribution is one aspect of the Fair Use equation that does receive some real attention from those deciding cases. Although a lack of attribution does not automatically mean one is running afoul of copyright regulation, it is a factor when determining the validity of a defense based on Fair Use.

While doing some digging on these issues, I found a few versions of a handy worksheet that attempts to determine whether one's work falls under the Fair Use doctrine or not. I cannot vouch for these forms' ability to successfully predict the outcome of a court claim, but I do think they shed real light on how these determinations can be made.

My favorite Fair Use worksheet can be found here. Take a look and see what you think.

When I ran through it using the Instant Article Generator "defensive driving" tutorial article, the worksheet indicates the article would probably pass muster under Fair Use.