Under the Collective Agreement with CUASA, faculty generally own any copyright materials they produce at Carleton. Ownership can, however, be affected by University contracts, agreements with industry sponsors, and the contributions of joint authors.

Terms relating to copyright ownership and use of materials created by faculty are set out in Article 14 of the Collective Agreement Between Carleton University and the CUASA. The current Collective Agreement (2014-2017) provides that faculty own any copyright materials they produce, including lecture and seminar materials, subject to certain qualifications, such as:

When the University contributes significant resources to the development of the materials – in which case, there should be a specific contract setting out ownership and rights to use and revise the material.

Commissioned works – where the University has employed the faculty member for the express purpose of creating a specific copyright work or works, the University may reserve ownership of the material, unless other arrangements have been made.

Different rules apply to materials created by Carleton staff and independent contractors.

Ownership can be affected by agreements with industry sponsors or joint authors, who may have an interest in the works which they have helped to create or fund. Ultimately, ownership will depend on the facts of your situation. You should contact copyright@carleton.ca if you are unsure about the ownership of your work.

 

What can I do if a student posts my course materials on a public website without my permission?

Please note that not all uses or postings of your material will necessarily constitute a violation of the law. The Copyright Act contains numerous users’ rights, such as fair dealing, that allow the use of your copyright-protected material without your permission for certain purposes, within some circumstances.  However, this posting may constitute a violation of your intellectual property rights and/or be considered academic misconduct.  There are several options that, depending on the particular circumstances and whether the student’s identity is known, may be available to you:

You may decide to pursue informal, remedial discussion with the student(s) involved.

You may pursue a complaint pursuant to Carleton's Academic Integrity Policy.  

You may issue a notice to the website to remove the infringing material and/or notify the infringing poster.  Please see the section How do I give notice to a website that it is hosting material that infringes my copyright further down on this page for this step.

You may consider taking legal action against the student(s) involved and/or the website where your material was posted.   Carleton University cannot provide legal advice or representation to a faculty member with respect to his/her personal intellectual property rights, and strongly recommends that you seek independent, professional legal counsel before considering this option.

How can I give students permission to use or post my materials?

If you wish to give students your permission to share your materials online, you may do so either on a case-by-case basis upon their request, or grant blanket permission to your students through use of an open access or Creative Commons licence.

The Creative Commons offers a number of template licences that give permission within certain restrictions.  For instance, the “CC BY” licence, the most permissive licence, only requires that users give appropriate credit to the creator. The “CC BY-NC-SA” licence not only requires credit be given, but also prohibits commercial use of your work, and requires that any derivative work be shared alike under an equally permissive Creative Commons licence.

For more information about giving permission or open access, please contact copyright@carleton.ca, or visit the Creative Commons website.  

What can I do if a student posts her/his notes, assignments, or course summaries that contain information taught in my course, or information contained in my materials?

Carleton students own their own notes, summaries, assignments, and all other course work they create themselves. This ownership includes all of the intellectual property rights (particularly copyright) in these works.

Copyright law does not protect facts or information, per se.  If a student has not reproduced a substantial portion of your actual work, then the student generally has the right to post their own work, even if it is a summary that contains information from your course materials or lessons.

How can I inform or warn students about my intellectual property rights?

Although notice, such as use of a copyright symbol “©”, is not legally required to gain protection for your work under the Copyright Act, it is generally good practice to note your ownership of materials on all handouts, slides, tests, and exams etc. that you create.  It is also recommended that you notify students on the course syllabus if you do not wish them to share your work online.

Recommended message for course syllabi: 

Intellectual property notice

All slides, presentations, handouts, tests, exams, and other course materials created by the instructor in this course are the intellectual property of the instructor. A student who publicly posts or sells an instructor’s work, without the instructor’s express consent, may be charged with misconduct under Carleton's Academic Integrity Policy and/or Code of Conduct, and may also face adverse legal consequences for infringement of intellectual property rights.

If you have questions about fair dealing and your other rights to use works for educational purposes, please contact copyright@carleton.ca.

Copyright notice for individual materials: 

Copyright notice

© [year]

This work is the intellectual property of the instructor (unless otherwise noted), and is protected by law.  Unless a users’ right in Canada’s Copyright Act covers the particular use, students must not publish, post on a public Internet site, sell, rent, or otherwise distribute this work without the instructor’s express permission.  Failure to abide by these restrictions may constitute grounds for academic misconduct proceedings and/or legal action against you.

If you have questions about fair dealing and your other rights to use works for educational purposes, please contact copyright@carleton.ca.

How do I give notice to a website that it is hosting material that infringes my copyright?

A lawsuit against an individual, anonymous poster or against a website hosting content may often not be a practical or cost-effective solution.  Many countries, including Canada and the United States, also give Internet content hosts, that allow individuals to post, certain limited legal immunity to such a lawsuit.

However, you may give notice to the website of your copyright claim, so that they make take action in order to prevent potential liability.  In the US, this will usually trigger a swift takedown of the material, unless the poster contests your claim.

Many websites will have online forms or message templates for you to fill in to register such a claim.

If there is no form or other process specified on the host website, then the following messages may be filled in where highlighted and used for the purpose of giving formal notice to a website that it is hosting content that infringes your copyright.  The three messages below are intended for use with regard to Canadian, American, and other international websites, respectively.

 

Template message for Canadian websites (“notice and notice”): 

Subject: Copyright Infringement Notice 

To whom it may concern:

This is notice pursuant to section 41.25 of Canada’s Copyright Act that your website service is hosting material that infringes copyright. You are required by section 41.26(1) of the Copyright Act to:

(a)as soon as feasible forward the notice electronically to the person to whom the electronic location identified by the location data specified in the notice belongs and inform the claimant of its forwarding or, if applicable, of the reason why it was not possible to forward it; and

(b)retain records that will allow the identity of the person to whom the electronic location belongs to be determined, and do so for six months beginning on the day on which the notice of claimed infringement is received or, if the claimant commences proceedings relating to the claimed infringement and so notifies the person before the end of those six months, for one year after the day on which the person receives the notice of claimed infringement.

Work(s): [Title(s)]
Location(s): [link to URL(s)]
File name: [name, if applicable]
Date and time of infringement: [Date infringement was found and viewed, note also if “ongoing”]
Infringing poster: [name/username/account/other identifying information if available]

I am the author and copyright owner of [the works listed above or, if your work has been used in a larger file, identify the specific parts of the work(s) in which you own copyright]. This/these work(s) has/have been posted to your service without my permission.

Claimant name: [Your name]
Contact information: [business address, email, & phone number]
Please contact me at the email listed above indicating your prompt response.
[Name]
[Date]

 

Template message for US websites (Digital Millennium Copyright Act takedown notice): 

Subject: Copyright Infringement Notice 

To whom it may concern:

This is notice pursuant to section 512(c) of the Digital Millennium Copyright Actthat your website service is hosting material that infringes my copyright. As a service provider, you are required to “expeditiously remove or disable access to” the infringing material.

Work(s): [Title(s)]
Location(s): [link to URL(s)]
File name: [name, if applicable]

Infringing poster: [name/username/account/other identifying information if available]

I am the author and the copyright owner [of the works listed above or, if your work has been used in a larger file, identify the specific parts of the work(s) in which you own copyright]. This/these work(s) has/have been posted to your service without my permission.

Claimant name: [Your name]
Contact information: [business address, email, & phone number]

I have a good faith belief that the use of the material that appears on the service is not authorized by myself, the copyright owner, my agent, or by operation of law.

I declare under penalty of perjury, pursuant to the laws of the United States of America, that this notification is true and accurate, and that I am either the copyright owner or I am authorized by the copyright owner, its agent, or by operation of law.

Please contact me at the email listed above indicating your prompt response.

Signed,
[electronic or physical signature]
[name]
[Date]

 

Template generic Message for other international websites: 

 

Subject: Copyright Infringement Notice 

To whom it may concern:

This is notice that your website service is hosting material that infringes copyright in my material.

Work(s): [Title(s)]
Location(s): [link to URL(s)]
File name: [name, if applicable]
Infringing poster: [name/username/account/other identifying information if available]

I am the author and copyright owner of [the works listed above or, if your work has been used in a larger file, identify the specific parts of the work(s) in which you own copyright]. This/these work(s) has/have been posted to your service without my permission.

Claimant name: [Your name]
Contact information: [business address, email, & phone number]

I request that you remove the infringing material immediately.  Please contact me at the email listed above indicating your prompt response.

This webpage is adapted from Brock University Faculty-owned Materials Copyright page with permission.

Questions? Not sure? Want more details? Contact Copyright@carleton.ca

Content last reviewed: December 3, 2018