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Langara Library

Important update on copyright for faculty

Dear faculty,

On July 12, 2017 the Federal Court of Canada released its decision in the Access Copyright vs. York University copyright case. The case centered upon two main issues:

  1. Whether York’s fair dealing guidelines are indeed fair, and;
  2. Whether Access Copyright’s post-secondary interim tariff is mandatory and enforceable.

Unfortunately, York lost on both issues and the decision could have significant implications since York’s fair dealing guidelines are similar to those adopted by Canadian post-secondary institutions, including Langara.

The York ruling is contrary to a number of recent Supreme Court decisions that have affirmed the importance of users’ rights. For this reason, a number of respected legal experts feel there is a strong likelihood of success should York choose to appeal the decision.

What does this mean for you as an instructor?

For now, Langara will continue to operate under its current fair dealing policies and directives. If you have requested a print course pack for the Fall 2017 semester, copies will be prepared by the Print Shop but distributed in the classroom (instead of through the Bookstore) at no cost to your students. The Bookstore will be in contact with you in August.

Langara Library also subscribes to a wide range of online resources, including e-books, e-journals, and streaming media. You can link directly to the appropriate articles or chapters and share those links with your students through D2L (see Five reasons to share links with your students).

For assistance locating and incorporating subscription-based or openly licensed content into your courses, please contact your subject librarian.

It has also come to our attention that some Langara faculty members have received messages from third-parties advertising copyright services following the Court’s decision. Please disregard these messages.

Langara remains committed to balancing our interests as a place of learning with those of content creators and publishers. Langara’s Copyright Office will keep you apprised of new developments. Please feel free to contact with any questions.


Ian Humphreys
Provost and Vice-President, Academic and Students

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