Digital Citizenship – Week 3

The topic for this week, Copyright, was of interest to me. I feel like I am a very ethical person, but besides my values, I don’t know much about what I can and can’t do in terms of copying or using materials in my classroom. Just the description and example that Billie Ann gave in our web conference was very eye-opening to me. I hadn’t ever thought about teaching my students how to correctly use a resource when writing a report. I don’t know that I ever learned the right way myself! Her idea of having students read an article entirely and then close their computer and write a bulleted list of everything that they remembered was very eye-opening. It’s so easy for students to take notes by copying words, phrases, and sentences from a resource.

Stim’s (2017) information about determining fair use was also full of new information for me. Again, I was going off of my values and ethics, which were actually along the same lines that Stim suggests. His four factors to consider – purpose, nature, amount, and effect – clarified for me, and gave me something solid that I can use when working with students and teachers.

Creative Commons is a new concept for me to consider. I’ve noticed the Creative Commons license symbols before, but never knew what they meant. Dylan, Meier, and Cohen (2008) do a great job of explaining Creative Commons in their video. I can understand why there are different licenses for different purposes. Some people may not care about others using their property, while some don’t mind use if properly attributed. When using pictures for assignments while working on graduate school courses, I have typically used a Google search and narrowed the results to those allowed for non-commercial use. I am now beginning to understand when the other types of licenses might be appropriate.

I also learned a lot when reading about the newly appointed Librarian in the Library of Congress. In the report from the Hudson Institute, it is recommended that the Library of Congress be separated from the U.S. Copyright Office. They say that the Library of Congress is ‘badly outdated’ and that the Copyright Office will not be able to focus on the needed updates because they have ‘other priorities.’ While I don’t think that the actual location of the Library of Congress is important, I think that there needs to be some effort put into the necessary updates to bring them into the 21st century. If this can be done while they are part of the Copyright Office, that’s fine. If not, then the Library of Congress needs to be a different entity entirely. The most important thing is to modernize our copyright laws, especially to make specific rules pertaining to material on the internet.


Dylan, J. (Director), & Meier, M., & Cohen, P. (Producers). (2008, July 30). A Shared Culture [Video file]. Retrieved June 25, 2017, from

Hudson Institute. (2015). A 21st Century Copyright Office: The Conservative Case for Reform. Washington, DC: Tepp, Steven and Oman, Ralph.

Stim, R. (2017, April 10). Measuring Fair Use: The Four Factors. Retrieved June 25, 2017, from