Spotlight: Campus Expert for the Copyright Labyrinth

Spotlight: Campus Expert for the Copyright Labyrinth

Date Published:
Thursday, September 29, 2011

The complicated role copyright plays in teaching and research – especially in an age of digital technology – continues to be a growing issue in the university setting. Peggy Hoon, J.D., UNC Charlotte’s Scholarly Communications Librarian and nationally recognized copyright and intellectual property expert, is a testament to that. Providing faculty and students with estensive experience, insight and resources, Peggy is helping the University address, and protect itself from, the mounting complexities of scholarly research and instruction copyright issues.

“Copyright and scholarly communication consulting, resources and information all play a mission-critical role,” says Hoon. This is especially true in light of an ever-changing environment that increasingly places copyright rules and responsibilities directly on the shoulders of busy faculty and students. One public research university currently faces a lawsuit alleging copyright infringement in their electronic reserves and online courses for use of material without permission. There are also claims against another prominent public university for streaming entire movies within their online course management system without prior permission. Both of these cases support the need for copyright resources and a better understanding of fair use in a higher educational setting.

Legal decisions have made it perfectly clear that the old, print-based rules relating to the production and use of scholarship in higher education do not apply in the same way to material in digital formats.
Stanley Wilder, University Librarian

Since joining the J. Murrey Atkins Library, Hoon has developed several resources to support UNC Charlotte intellectual output: a robust copyright website, including a new popular section, "What Can I Put on My Moodle Courses," tailored to campus campus copyright workshops, and regular consultations with faculty and students. Within the library, she addresses copyright use with other librarians, provides assistance with collections’ license purchase agreements and is beginning to provide license training. Understandably, her role will continue to grow as UNC Charlotte further strengthens its’ copyright proficiencies.

Stanley Wilder, Atkins Library university librarian says, “Legal decisions have made it perfectly clear that the old, print-based rules relating to the production and use of scholarship in higher education do not apply in the same way to material in digital formats. This applies to classroom practice as well as published scholarship. This shifting landscape is especially treacherous given the propensity of publishers to litigate.”

In February, Peggy was also selected to serve as the 2011-13 “Virtual Intellectual Property Scholar” for the University of Maryland University College’s Center for Intellectual Property (CIP). Among many responsibilities, she develops and delivers educational programming, including advanced training classes in copyright digitization issues, serves on the Advisory Board, and maintains the IP Scholar blog.

All faculty, students and staff are welcome to contact Peggy for copyright guidance and education. She can be contacted via email at phoon@uncc.edu, by phone at 704-687-5540, or via her website.

Please note: Information provided by the Copyright Education Specialist does not constitute legal advice. The only office on campus that provides legal advice is the Office of Legal Affairs.