By Ann Williams

On Tuesday, September 25, the Center for Social Media, in partnership with the Washington College of Law’s Program on Information Justice and Intellectual Property (PIJIP) and the Media Education Lab of Temple University, announced the release of its newest publication, The Cost of Copyright Confusion for Media Literacy. The publication, funded by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, is the first step in an effort to develop standards for educators who continue to experience uncertainty, and often fear, when making decisions about what media is “safe” to use in their classrooms.

Roughly 60 teachers, legal professionals and educational media makers attended the event at the Washington College of Law, while nearly 200 others participated via webcasting. (A podcast is available here. Professors Pat Aufderheide (AU), Peter Jaszi (WCL) and Renee Hobbs (Temple University) reported the results of their research. Professor Kenneth Crews, Director of the Copyright Management Office at Indiana University’s School of Law, Shay Taylor of Montgomery Blair High School, Karen Zill of the Alliance for a Media Literate America, and Dale Allender from the National Council of Teachers of English rounded out a highly knowledgeable, candid and entertaining panel of experts.

In the subsequent question and answer session, the panelists heard from teachers eager to learn more about the flexibility in fair use and copyright laws, as well as from educational media makers concerned about the damages they may suffer if fewer teachers are purchasing rights to their content. The development of these standards, while guided by the AU and Temple research team, will be born from consensus from the media literacy community.

To read the report and to learn more about copyright and fair use in teaching, please click here.