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Why do I have to get permission for this item?

U.S. copyright law gives the creators of a wide range of written and visual documents and other forms of intellectual property the right to control how their material is used by others. If you want to reproduce writing or images copyrighted by others in your own article or book, then you need to get the copyright holder’s permission to do so. If the creator has granted the copyright to a publisher, you will need to get the permission of the publisher.

You may also need to get permission to re-use your own previously published work. Journal articles and book chapters are generally copyrighted by the press that publishes them. Many presses explicitly grant authors the right to re-use their own material in later single-author publications in return for an acknowledgment of the original publication. Check your contract or contributor agreement, or look for such a statement on the journal’s or publisher’s website.

However, some uses of copyrighted materials fall under the principle of “fair use” or the materials are in the public domain. If your use qualifies as fair use, or if the material is in the public domain, you do not need to get permission to reprint.

—AUPresses Faculty Outreach Committee

Additional information about copyright, permissions, and fair use is available from the AUPresses Intellectual Property and Copyright Committee’s Permissions FAQs.