Copyright & Permissions for Online Exhibitions & Digital Collections

Copyright and Permissions for Online Exhibitions and Digital Collections

  1. A central mission of Columbia University Libraries (CUL) is to make its collections available in support of research and scholarship by members of the Columbia University community and others. In support of this mission, CUL provides access to online exhibitions and its digital collections for purposes that include highlighting the collections, providing information about the collections and the materials contained in them, and encouraging broader discovery.
  2. Users of materials in the Libraries collections, including its Online Exhibitions and Digital Collections and known as the Digital Libraries Collection, must respect copyright and other legal rights held by other parties that may affect their subsequent use. The copyright law of the United States (title 17, United States Code) governs the making of reproductions of copyrighted material. Under certain conditions specified in the law, libraries and archives are authorized to furnish a reproduction. One of these specific conditions is that the reproduction is not to be used for any purpose other than your own private study, scholarship, or research. Any subsequent copying, downloading or distributing materials accessed by you in the  Digital Libraries Collection that are subject to copyright protection may constitute copyright infringement. In addition, Columbia University Libraries may employ technical measures to prevent any further copying, downloading, or distribution of the materials. A violation of these terms may subject you to potential liability for copyright infringement.
  3.  The online exhibitions or digital collections may also contain materials that are not copyright protected and they may be used without restriction.  Where material is copyright protected, you may have to seek permission from the rights holder to reproduce and otherwise use the materials. Alternatively, you may be able to use the exhibitions, digital collections and the materials contained in them as permitted by law, such as under fair use or other copyright exceptions.  Columbia University makes no representation about the copyright or other legal status of the materials.  It is your responsibility to investigate and, if needed, clear rights to use these materials.
  4. The materials are displayed “as is” and without warranties of any kind, either express or implied, including any warranties of title, non-infringement of copyright or other rights.
  5. You are welcome to link to our online exhibitions or digital collections for educational and research purposes. If you wish to publish or reproduce materials in the online exhibitions or the digital collections, please see: Columbia University Libraries Publication & Digital Reproduction Policy and Procedures.  
  6. If you have questions, comments, or additional information related to our online exhibitions or digital collections, please contact:
  7. If you are a copyright owner and believe that your rights have been infringed, please see Copyright – Columbia University in the City of New York.

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