Re: Institutional v. Home Use Video

Gary Handman (
Wed, 13 Feb 2002 12:04:12 -0800 (PST)

This is a really tough nut.

Stictly (verrrrrrrrrrrrrry strictly) speaking, fair use extends only to
places where regular face to face instruction occurs (i.e.
classrooms). Ten years or so ago, the issue of individual video viewing in
public and academic libraries was a hotly debated issue (particularly
regarding public libraries). The strict constructionists contended that
single viewer use in public libraries constituted public
performance. Then, the late Ivan Bender--Mr. Video Copyright
Attorney--conceded that such use would probably fly under fair use--or at
least it would not likely be challenged.

OK. All along, I've gone to the battlements for considering in-library
viewing in academic libraries (i.e. course-required viewing ) as a logical
extension of face-to-face teaching. I think there's considerably shakier
legs to stand on when you consider extra-curricular (i.e. recreational)
viewing in such facilities. The wider open the facility, the shakier the
legs, most likely. The community does not use MRC (or only
occasionally--mostly for documentary research). If I were open, as you
are, I'd be careful...

At 11:23 AM 2/13/2002 -0800, you wrote:
>When you say on-site viewing, are you including any patrons who are not
>students, faculty or staff of the university? I'm asking because we are
>an urban campus and some of the librarians think it is ok for our
>community patrons to come in and watch videos (read feature films). The
>rationale behind that is "access to information. I know most public
>libraries so not have viewing stations because of PPR. Anyway, how do
>you handle this? Or, if you don't have any community patrons come to
>your library, how would you handle this?
>Jan O'Neill
>Media Librarian
>Tidewater Community College
>300 Grandby Street
>Norfolk, VA 23510
>757-822-1106 fax
> >>> 02/12/02 11:36AM >>>
>'s yet another topic which makes me foam at the mouth...(Mad
>Handman, they call me)
>The issue here isn't (in my book) whether vendors charge differentially
>based on institutional market...I can see the economic impetus behind
>I guess. The issue is the common (intentional in most cases) confusion
>spread by vendors about the need for performance rights in educational
>contexts. If a vendor offers the same title at both home video pricing
>"institutional" pricing (with performance rights, supposedly), I'm
>gonna go for the home video version. The fact is 100% of all
>in my Media Center are either for on-site viewing or for face to face
>teaching in a classroom--fair use, plain and simple. I simply don't
>and don't want performance rights...period. I really don't mind
>the higher institutional price (well, I do, but I'm used to it)
>me crazy, however, when a vendor rationalizes this higher price based
>rights that are irrelevant to me. If there's a COMMERCIAL stiplulation
>that I pay higher price, I'll pay. Otherwise, home video here I
>At 01:02 PM 2/11/2002 -0800, you wrote:
> >Today I was searching the Facets site and found two versions of the
> >title: a home-use video priced at $40 and an institutional video with
> >performance rights for $90. This trend toward double-pricing has been
> >increasingly evident in the market. PBS now offers both home-use and
> >institutional video and will sell educational institutions either
> >Some other companies will not sell the home-use version to colleges at
> >but only to individuals. This effectively circumvents the classroom
> >exemption for home-use- only videos.
> >What do you all think about this? I'm not sure how I feel. On the one
> >hand(Arab Film Distribution being a case in point), you have a
> >doing important work that should/needs to be subsidized by the higher
> >On the other, the trend infringes on a very important and traditional
> >educational right.
> >If I continue to purchase home-use-only videos from PBS, as I mostly
>do now,
> >will I consider that short-sighted a few years down the road?
> >Thanks for your input.
> >Patty
> >_________________________________
> >Patricia Hornbeck
> >Middlebury College
> >Sunderland Language Center
> >Middlebury, VT 05753
> >
> >(802)443-2268 phone
> >(802)443-2075 fax
> >Email:
>Gary Handman
>Media Resources Center
>Moffitt Library
>UC Berkeley, CA 94720-6000

Gary Handman
Media Resources Center
Moffitt Library
UC Berkeley, CA 94720-6000