Last November, President Bush signed into law the Technology, Education, and Copyright Harmonization (TEACH) Act, redefining the terms by which accredited, nonprofit educational institutions throughout the United States “may use copyright protected materials in distance education—including on web sites and by other digital means—without permission from the copyright owner and without payment of royalties,” according to this web site. In response to the legislation, the American Library Association’s Office for Information Technology Policy has published a white paper that explains the new law and what it requires of distance-education programs. As with all copyright law, each institution must assess its own needs and values before developing its own interpretations and policies, the site says. This paper provides the necessary guidance and background information to do so.

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