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Libraries, Universities, and Civil Society Groups to Celebrate Fair Use/Fair Dealing Week 2022 on February 21–25

Fair Use/Fair Dealing Week logo Fair Use/Fair Dealing Week 2022–an annual international celebration of these important copyright doctrines–will take place Monday–Friday, February 21–25.

Fair use (in the US) and fair dealing (in Canada and other jurisdictions) is a right that allows the use of copyrighted materials without permission from the copyright holder under certain circumstances. For this year’s Fair Use/Fair Dealing Week, the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) partnered with the Social Science Research Council (SSRC) to interview experts reflecting on the question of how fair use supports research, journalism, and truth. ARL will share videos of these interviews throughout the week on the Fair Use/Fair Dealing Week website and on ARL’s social media channels—you can find the videos by following #FairUseWeek. SSRC will post interviews on MediaWell, an initiative by the SSRC’s Emergent Technologies & Democracy program that aggregates academic research on mis- and disinformation.

Libraries play a critical role in the ecosystem of research, journalism, and truth by collecting and preserving source material, and making information available for researchers and journalists to cite facts, and quote original sources. Journalists rely on fair use everyday; fair use preserves the constitutionality of copyright by allowing journalists to express their First Amendment rights. Fair use also enables the reproducibility of science by allowing peers to access, interrogate, and build on research outputs like data, methodology, and findings that may be protected by copyright.

“Fair use is an indispensable tool allowing librarians, researchers, journalists, and the public to access and use copyrighted original sources, which is critical to understanding the truth of any issue,” said ARL President K. Matthew Dames, the Edward H. Arnold University Librarian for the University of Notre Dame. “Along with rights that Congress specifically granted to libraries, fair use propels the advancement of culture and knowledge, which is the fundamental purpose of copyright.”

Thanks to Alex Abdo, Pat Aufderheide, Jonathan Band, K. Matthew Dames, Sandra Enimil, Eric Goldman, Mark Lemley, Rina Pantalony, Nabiha Syed, Rebekah Tromble, and the SSRC for sharing their expertise!

How to Participate

There are many ways to participate in Fair Use/Fair Dealing Week! You could publish a blog post on fair use/dealing on one day during the week, or you might host events each day of the week. Below are some examples of ways to participate:


About the Association of Research Libraries

The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) is a nonprofit organization of 126 research libraries in Canada and the US whose mission is to advance research, learning, and scholarly communication. The Association fosters the open exchange of ideas and expertise; advances diversity, equity, and inclusion; and pursues advocacy and public policy efforts that reflect the values of the library, scholarly, and higher education communities. ARL forges partnerships and catalyzes the collective efforts of research libraries to enable knowledge creation and to achieve enduring and barrier-free access to information. ARL is on the web at ARL.org.