Video and Continuous Learning –
Teachers can look for guidance in fair use.
The TEACH Act is meant to help make
decisions with “online performances
and displays for distance learning.” This
is beyond the educational exemptions
provided to teachers in face-to-face
teaching situations. Think of virtual learning
two ways: learning on a closed system
specific to your students, and an open
system (YouTube). A key concept is
mediated instruction. Basically, lawfully
acquired materials can be used in distance
learning just like they are used in the
classroom, but there must be an instructor
who controls and monitors the content.
• It is not an infringement to make an
• Are you posting a
presentation on the
open web that includes
video that would
meet the educational
exemption in a face-to-face
but would violate
copyright if displayed
on the web?
• Are you making a copy
or streaming video?
• Are you using a lawful/
• If posting to the open
web, do you have the
rights to make that
• Additional information
on the TEACH Act is at
instructional performance or display
to a closed group of students online
(assuming you are using a lawfully
made copy) of most works. Special
limits apply to motion pictures (“reasonable and limited portions”)
designed for a classroom use.
• The TEACH Act provides a different approach for distance
education. In an online environment, the Act allows for use of clips
of a film in “reasonable limited portions.” For instance, you could
show entire movies in 30-minute increments over the course of five
consecutive distance learning class periods.
• Works created specially for mediated instructions are outside the
scope of the TEACH Act.
• Don’t mess with the technology protections in place with the
• Your district may have put additional restrictions in place.
(Legal opinion from Lutzker and Associates, June 2020.)