Intellectual Property Law
Ask an Intellectual Property Lawyer. Get an Answer ASAP.
Thank you for using JustAnswer. I am researching your issue and will respond shortly.
Assuming that these would be short clips of the professors talks and short clips of the news programs, they almost certainly would be fair use. 17 U.S.C. § 107: Notwithstanding the provisions of sections 17 U.S.C. § 106 and 17 U.S.C. § 106A, the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies or phonorecords or by any other means specified by that section, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright. In determining whether the use made of a work in any particular case is a fair use the factors to be considered shall include:
Typically documentaries are determined to be for criticism, comment, news reporting, or teaching. The fact that it's not for profit helps, as well as the work that is being used.
The documentary is not going to use a large portion of the copyrighted work, and will have likely zero effect on the potential market for the copyrighted work (that is, potential "purchasers" of those works will not buy / view yours instead, which is generally why a smaller amount used is better, because a small amount of the copyrighted work would not give a viewer the entire context (assuming that viewer would purchase / view the copyrighted work otherwise)
Finally, it's very rare that copyright holders would go after documentary filmmakers in the first place. There's no money in such litigation, and typically they only do so if their egos are hurt (but even then, it's an uphill battle if the documentary is of a non-profit nature, which is one of the greatest challenges facing a copyright holder)
This is not an "all or nothing" type situation. The fact that this is used for "criticism, comment... news reporting..." etc... is the most important aspect. Proving a copyright holder wrong on a matter, even though it could affect the market, it's not because the use of the copyright was so substantial that a potential borrower would not purchase the copyrighted material, but rather that you proved it wrong (which is not related to copyright).
I would certainly be as honest as possible (don't take things out of context, etc...), and limit the use of the copyrighted materials to the issues at hand (that is, shorter is better for fair use).
My pleasure.If you have any other questions, please let me know. If not, and you have not yet, please rate my answer AND press the "submit" button, if applicable. Please note that I don't get any credit for my answer unless and until you rate it a 3, 4, 5 (good or better). Thank you, XXXXX XXXXX good luck to you!
You're welcome, and again, good luck to you!
Did you have any other questions before you rate this answer?
Please note that this question remains open until you rate it.
Are you there? Please note that I am still here, awaiting your response or rating...
Should I continue to await your response, or may I assist the other customers that are waiting?
My apologies, but I must assist the other customers that are waiting. If there's nothing else, please rate this answer. Please note that I don't get any credit for the time (~25 minutes) and effort that I spent on this answer unless and until you rate it a 3, 4, 5 (good or better) AND press the "submit" button, if applicable. If you feel that I have gone above and beyond in this answer (my average answer is about 10 minutes) bonuses are greatly appreciated. Thank you, XXXXX XXXXX luck to you!
DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.
The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).