Re: Home Use Videos in Meeting Rooms

Pat Means (
Tue, 31 Aug 1999 12:57:43 -0700 (PDT)


I would very much like the citations that you mention at the end of your
message. We, at our library, are possibly going to place the majority of
our videos out in the open area of the library and the question of the
legality of using the home-use videos in the individual carrels has come
into question. We have always kept out videos in our Educational Media
Center and only allowed them to be used in this area.

Thank you.

At 12:27 PM 8/31/99 -0700, you wrote:
>I think you can use home-use videos for private showings in your library
>meeting rooms, even if the people using them are not a family. If calling
>the room "private" makes it like a home, the home-use applies to a family
>or a small group of friends. You can invite everyone you know over to your
>house to watch a video on a Saturday night. If someone wants to interpret
>the law narrowly, any showing in a public room -- these are public rooms
>given the legal definition -- requires a public performance license, but I
>wouldn't worry about being overly consciencious about this. Our local
>public library has small viewing room that anyone can use, individually or
>in small groups. No one has ever told them to stop. I think it you
>rigidly enforce that the small group can include family members only, you
>are denying access to your collection unnecessarily.
>Some public and academic libraries have worried about allowing library
>patrons to watch home-use videos in libraries -- at individual stations or
>in small group viewing rooms, but literally *no* library that permits this
>activity has ever received a cease-and-desist letter from a copyright
>holder, let alone been taken to court. There are articles in law journals
>about this topic. I can send you some citations if you need more
>Kristine Brancolini
>Indiana University Libraries
>On Tue, 31 Aug 1999, Maurine Canarsky wrote:
>> Hello Videolibbers:
>> We are a public library and have 4 meeting rooms. We offer VCR equipment
>> use in all of them.
>> My question is:
>> If we designate 3 of the meeting rooms as "private", meaning that the
>> meeting is not open to the public, can "home use" videos be legally
>> viewed in them if the group using the room is a family?
>> Thanks in advance for your opinions and help.
>> Maurine Canarsky, Media Librarian
>> Noel Wien Public Library
>> 1215 Cowles St.
>> Fairbanks, AK 99701
>> 907-459-1020
>> 907-459-1024 Fax