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Canadian Association of Research Libraries

Fair Dealing in Canada website — Call for Fair Dealing Testimonials

February 6, 2018

In 2016, the Scholarly Communication and Copyright Office at the University of Toronto developed the Fair Dealing in Canada website as a place to collect testimonials from students, instructors and researchers on the importance of fair dealing in their lives. Several post-secondary institutions across the country contributed content towards this initiative.

Last year, the Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL) took over the site, and is currently undertaking a redesign that will make the site bilingual and more comprehensive, featuring background information on fair dealing and links to useful outside resources. As the Canadian government launches its review its Copyright Act in 2018 and as certain lobby groups seek to discredit the legitimacy of fair dealing, it is particularly important that we collect first-hand accounts of how fair dealing benefits Canadians.

As the 2018 Fair Dealing Week approaches (February 26-March 2, 2018), CARL seeks to collect additional personal stories in which individuals express how they benefit from fair dealing. We are happy to add more experiences of those within educational sectors, but we are also hoping to broaden the scope of the site to include stories from outside academia.

Here are some examples of types of stories we would like to hear:

  • a researcher who downloads publicly available content from the Web for the purpose of text and data mining for their research;
  • an instructor who copies and shares a recent news articles with students for an in-class assignment;
  • a young adult copying a few pages from Popular Mechanics to make a robotic cart;
  • an older person copying a knitting pattern from a friend’s book;
  • a novelist copying a few pages from a library reference book to use as background research;
  • teenagers sharing copies of poems with each other, as part of a creative writing assignment;
  • a newspaper reporter quoting from a prior news article;
  • a Youtuber parodying a politician with the use of a television news media clip;
  • a documentary filmmaker who uses fair dealing content in their work;
  • a public library patron copying recipe from a cookbook.

Note: We realize that in many cases (as in the examples above), users may not be aware that they are benefiting from fair dealing when they make use of it. The assistance of librarians and copyright specialists may be required to help individuals recognize that they in fact have a testimonial to contribute.

If you have a story to contribute, or if you are willing to help us solicit stories from patrons or people with whom you interact, we would be grateful for your contribution. Written testimonial should be no more than 150 words (see website for examples), and should be accompanied by a photo to be displayed on the website. Short video testimonials are also welcome.

If you have any questions, please contact Lise Brin, Program Officer at CARL, either at or 902-318-4485.

(Via Canadian Association of Research Libraries / Association des bibliothèques de recherche du Canada)

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