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Proper Use of Turchin Library's Licensed Databases

Proper Use of Licensed Databases for Course-Affiliated Client Projects, Directed Studies, Field Studies, Case Competitions, Internships and Employers

Links to Copyright Information

Following are some links that you may find useful. They are provided for your benefit, but please understand that Tulane may not agree with all the opinions, guidance, recommendations, and suggestions contained in every website listed below.

Howard-Tilton Memorial Library Guide to Copyright

Tulane Information Security Office - includes university policies, guidelines, and recommendations

United States Copyright Office - Official website of the federal copyright office

Copyright Law of the United States - full text of U.S. copyright law

Columbia University Copyright Advisory Office - resource for issues related to academic use of copyrighted materials

Stanford University Libraries Copyright and Fair Use - an extensive set of resources and links on the topic of copyright and fair use including tracking of on-going court cases

Copyright Crash Course - Univ. of Texas site covering your rights as a copyright owner and how to legally use content created by others, including fair use guidelines

Motion Picture Association of America's list of legal movie and TV download sites

Recording Industry Association of America's list of legal music download sites

Copyright Infringement

Tulane's handling of infringement violations

Violations of this policy by students shall be treated as violations of the Code of Student Conduct and will be referred to the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs for handling. Faculty and staff members who violate this policy will be subject to University disciplinary action. Tulane reserves the right to withhold computing privileges from those who do not abide by the letter or intent of this policy document. In addition, any person who violates this policy or the guidelines for interpreting this policy may also be subject to sanctions up to and including expulsion or termination.

Penalties for copyright infringement

Penalties for copyright infringement include civil and criminal penalties.  In general, anyone found liable for civil copyright infringement may be ordered to pay either actual damages or “statutory” damages affixed at not less than $750 and not more than $30,000 per work infringed.  For “willful” infringement, a court may award up to $150,000 per work infringed.  A court can, in its discretion, also assess costs and attorneys’ fees.  For details, see Title 17, United States Code, Sections 504, 505 (linked above).  Willful copyright infringement can also result in criminal penalties, including imprisonment of up to five years and fines of up to $250,000 per offense. 

Even in cases settled out of court, settlement payments regarding online sharing of copyrighted music are reported in the media to average $3,000-5,000.

As mentioned above, copyright infringement may lead to suspension or termination of network privileges and may be the subject of disciplinary action from the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs.

For further information about this and other information security policies and applicable computing laws and regulations please visit the Tulane Information Security website, or contact the Information Security Officer at (504) 988-8500 or

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