The purpose of this Copyright Policy is to provide guidance in the proper use of copyrightable materials and to set forth the terms applicable to any copyrightable materials that may be written, developed, recorded, generated, created, managed, presented or delivered for Intellus Worldwide by its employees, staff, volunteers, speakers and/or other content providers.  

In this age of easy access to the Internet and almost constant sharing across multiple platforms, it is important to remember that not everything found on the Internet can be used freely.  In fact, the opposite is true.  Materials found on the Internet are subject to the same copyright protections as are printed materials.  Things like text, charts, graphs, tables, photographs, drawings, images, graphics, web pages, music, movies, PowerPoint presentations, postings to news groups, blogs, email messages, images, video clips, and computer software do not lose copyright protection simply because they are posted online.  

For purposes of this Copyright Policy, the following terms will have the following meanings: 

1. “Author” means the person or persons who wrote, developed, recorded, generated or created a particular work, regardless of the type, media or format of the work. 

2. “Contributor” means any person who writes, develops, records, generates, creates, manages or delivers any Copyrightable Materials for or on behalf of Intellus Worldwide.  “Contributor” includes, but is not limited to, all employees (whether full-time or part-time), staff, volunteers, speakers and other content providers, whether or not compensated by Intellus Worldwide.  

3. “Copyrightable Materials” means all text, books, articles, documents, outlines, PowerPoint presentations, artwork, images, graphics, logos, designs, music, audio recordings, movies, videos, photographs, computer software, websites, and other copyrightable works that are written, developed, recorded, generated or created by a Contributor (or their employees or agents), in any and all media and formats. 


United States copyright law protects original works of authorship that are fixed in a tangible medium of expression.  Copyright law does not protect ideas, facts, processes, methods of operation, concepts or principles, although it does protect the original expression of these things.  

For a brief overview of U.S. copyright law, see Exhibit A to this Copyright Policy.  


  1. Ownership by Intellus Worldwide.  The copyright in any Copyrightable Materials written, developed, recorded, generated or created by an employee (whether full-time or part-time) of Intellus Worldwide acting within the scope of their employment will be owned, as a matter of law, by Intellus Worldwide as a “work for hire”, except in those circumstances described in Article III, Paragraph B, of this Copyright Policy. In addition, if Intellus Worldwide hires or engages a Contributor to write, develop, record, generate or create any Copyrightable Materials, that Contributor may be required to sign a written agreement assigning and transferring the copyright in those Copyrightable Materials to Intellus Worldwide.  In that event, the terms of the signed document will control.  

  1. Ownership by Authors.  

  1. The copyright in any Copyrightable Materials written, developed, recorded, generated or created by a non-employee Contributor will be owned, as a matter of law, by the Author of those materials, unless otherwise specified in a written agreement between Intellus Worldwide and the Contributor.   

  1. Where any Copyrightable Materials are written, developed, recorded, generated or created by more than one Author, each Author will have an equal undivided interest in the work as a whole, unless the Authors otherwise agree between or among themselves in writing to some other sharing mechanism. 

  1. Editorial Changes.  If a Contributor makes any edits, changes or improvements to any Copyrightable Materials that were written, developed, recorded, generated or created by one or more other Contributors, whether in connection with the management, presentation or delivery of those Copyrightable Materials or otherwise, the Contributor making those edits, changes or improvements will not own, obtain or acquire any rights or copyrightable interest in the Copyrightable Materials being edited, changed or improved, unless the Author of those Copyrightable Materials otherwise agrees in writing. 

  1. Ownership by Third Parties.  If a copyrightable work results from or is written, developed, recorded, generated or created under a grant or other financing provided by the United States or any state government, or any of their respective commissions, agencies or authorities, any other administrative, legislative or judicial bodies, or any non-governmental agencies or other entities, the ownership of rights in that work will be controlled by the terms of the applicable grant, contract or agreement under which the financing was provided.  If there is no such grant, contract or agreement, or if any such grant, contract or agreement is silent on the issue of ownership, then the ownership of that work will be controlled by this Copyright Policy.  

  1. Grant of Rights by Authors.

  1. Each non-employee Author grants to Intellus Worldwide a perpetual, royalty-free, non-exclusive, worldwide right and license to use (and re-use) all Copyrightable Materials that he or she writes, develops, records, generates or creates for Intellus Worldwide, in any manner whatsoever, including in both print and electronic media of all types.  This license includes, but is not limited to, the right to copy, edit, reproduce, use, sell, lease, license to a third party, advertise, promote, market and distribute the Author’s Copyrightable Materials and any products or services embodying, employing or utilizing in any manner all or any part of such Copyrightable Materials.  This right and license expressly includes the right of Intellus Worldwide to grant sublicenses to any third party for any purpose whatsoever, which sublicenses may be restricted by Intellus Worldwide in any lawful manner.  

  1. Each Author acknowledges and agrees that Intellus Worldwide may use their name, face, voice, likeness and/or biographical information in connection with the use, sale, advertisement, promotion, marketing and distribution of their Copyrightable Materials and/or any products or services embodying, employing or utilizing any or all of such Copyrightable Materials, if Intellus Worldwide so chooses, in Intellus Worldwide’s sole discretion. 

  1. Each Author waives all rights that he or she may have to any claim for payment of any kind, whether money, property or otherwise, related to the use or re-use of their Copyrightable Materials under this Copyright Policy.  Each Author also waives any “moral rights” that they may have in or to their Copyrightable Materials.  


  1. Intellus Worldwide respects the copyrights of others, outside the confines of Intellus Worldwide.  The Intellus Worldwide's Board of Directors (the “Board”) may distribute a copy of this Copyright Policy to all Contributors, participants, learners, guests, visitors, consultants and independent contractors to assist them in complying with copyright law and this Copyright  Policy.  In addition, the Intellus Worldwide Copyright Policy Chair may arrange for training for Contributors and instructional sessions for participants and learners to assist them in complying with copyright law and this Copyright Policy.

  1. Contributors are prohibited from copying, distributing or using any materials not specifically allowed by fair use, copyright law, or contractual agreements or permissions.  Reasonable attempts will be made to assist any Contributors who need information so that they can perform their duties within the bounds of the law.  

  1. Contributors will be responsible for clearing all rights in or to any Copyrightable Materials owned by a third party that they may provide to Intellus Worldwide or use, present or deliver for or on behalf of Intellus Worldwide, including, but not limited to, by obtaining any required permissions or consents from the owner of the copyright in a work, or their agent, and for complying with any applicable license agreements, all in accordance with such procedures as Intellus Worldwide may adopt from time to time.  Contributors will instruct participants and learners concerning copyrights, request permissions when appropriate, and comply with license requirements as and when appropriate. 

  1. Violations of copyright law can be a felony, punishable by fines, jail time, or both.  The law permits a court to find individuals personally responsible for copyright infringement.  Intellus Worldwide neither permits nor condones copyright infringement by Contributors, participants, learners, guests, visitors, consultants or independent contractors.  Anyone who violates copyright law does so at their own risk and assumes all liability associated with their actions.


  1. The Board will be responsible for overseeing all aspects of this Copyright Policy. 

  1. If a dispute should arise over the ownership of the copyright in a work involving Intellus Worldwide and any Contributor(s), consultant(s) or independent contractor(s), that dispute will be presented to and resolved by the Board in accordance with such procedures as may be established by the Board from time to time. 



  1. What Does Copyright Protect

United States copyright law protects original works of authorship that are fixed in a tangible medium of expression.  Its coverage includes many types of creative works, including: literary, musical, pictorial, graphic, and sculptural.  The category of literary works is especially broad and includes many forms of writing that have no “literary” component in an artistic sense.  For example, literary works include computer programs, web pages, databases, directories, training manuals, repair manuals, user’s manuals, parts catalogs and the like.  

A work is protected by copyright if it contains the requisite originality and creativity to qualify for protection.  The standard of originality necessary to qualify for copyright protection is very low – most works qualify.  Some literary works are clearly creative and original, like novels, poems, and short stories, but other literary works, like web pages, catalogs and manuals, are not so clearly original and creative.  

Copyright protection begins as soon as a work is created.  It is not necessary to register the copyright in order for a work to be protected.  This means that every work that is copyrightable has copyright protection from the moment it is “fixed” in some medium – on paper, a disk, a hard drive, a thumb drive, in the cloud, etc.  

By law, copyright protection does not extend to any “idea, procedure, process, system, method of operation, concept, principle, or discovery.”  Accordingly, “facts” are not themselves copyrightable.  However, compilations of factual materials are protected if the selection, arrangement or coordination of the materials is sufficiently original.  For example, “yellow pages” in a telephone directory could be protected if the publisher uses a selection process for determining what to list and chooses a particular way of organizing the businesses into categories chosen by the publisher (e.g., other than a strictly alphabetical listing).  This selection and arrangement is sufficiently original to qualify for copyright protection.  Conversely, the “white pages” in a telephone directory would not be protected because white pages contain a listing for every person with a telephone number located within a particular geographic area, listed alphabetically by last name.  Aside from choosing the geographic area to include, the publisher of a white pages telephone directory does not make any original selection or arrangement of the information included in the directory. 

Nonetheless, many strictly factual works are protected by copyright.  Among them are examinations and examination questions, maps, architectural designs, original sequences of numbers that express ideas, instruction sheets, menus, baseball statistics on baseball cards, databases of contractor’s bids for electrical work, and a ranking top 5,000 premier baseball cards.  In all of these instances, the author of the work has demonstrated at least the minimal level of original or creative selection or arrangement in the factual materials contained in the work necessary to qualify for copyright protection. 

In the past, the courts have denied protection to such things as preexisting symbols (such as the fleur-de-lis), average values in a used car guide, terse phrases included on envelopes, columnar listings of data, common images turned into useful objects like children’s piggy banks, variations of common concepts like a teddy bear, and short combinations of words like “Nature’s most restful pose.” 

  1. What Rights Does Copyright Provide?

A copyright owner has the exclusive right to (1) make copies of the work; (2) create “derivative works” (revisions, modifications or extensions of the original work, including by turning a book into a movie); (3) distribute copies by sale, rental, lease or other methods; (4) perform the work publicly; and (5) display the work publicly. 

Creating derivative works of a copyrightable work involves transforming or reusing an existing work in a newly created work.  A derivative work, by definition, is a use that would require permission for the use of the underlying work.    

Copyright law prevents anyone other than the copyright owner from copying or distributing copies of the work without the permission of the copyright owner, unless that work is in the public domain or the copy qualifies as a “fair use”.  This protection applies to electronic formats just as it does to paper formats.  A copy in any medium or format is still a copy.   

Multiple copyrights can exist in the same material.  For example, a user’s manual may contain a diagram of a device, as well as a written description of that device, plus a set of instructions for how to use that device.  Each of these may be a separately copyrightable work, as would the user’s manual in its entirety.  Copying the diagram would violate the copyright in the diagram, although copying a single page of text from a user’s manual probably would not violate the copyright in the manual.  On the other hand, copying the entire manual, or a substantial portion of the manual, would violate the copyright in the manual. 

  1. What Constitutes Infringement?

The test for copyright infringement is generally stated in terms of “substantial similarity.”  If it is shown that someone had access to the copyrighted work, and the allegedly infringing work is “substantially similar” to the copyrighted work, the work is infringed.  Direct evidence of copying can also establish infringement.  The scope of protection given to more creative works is broader than that given to less creative works, so even a small amount of copying from a very creative work (such as a novel or a poem) might infringe the work.  Conversely, for a much less creative work (such as a compilation of factual material), the copyright protection is quite “thin,” and generally more of the work must be copied before there will be infringement.  

Suppose, for example, that someone wanted to create a lab manual, using content obtained from various sources – an image from one website, a chart from another website, some text from a journal, etc.  Each of those elements is likely protected by copyright and should not be included in the lab manual UNLESS:  (1) permission is obtained from the copyright owner of EACH element to include it in the lab manual, (2) the use of that content qualifies as fair use (see below), or (3) the content is in the public domain.  This process must be repeated for EACH element obtained from a third-party source.   

  1. What About Fair Use

Not all copies of a copyrightable work are infringing.  Unauthorized copies or uses in a variety of contexts, including for educational purposes, are sometimes permissible under the legal doctrine known as “fair use”.  However, fair use can be a complicated analysis.  To determine whether unauthorized copies or use of a copyrighted work is a fair use, a court will consider four factors:  (1) the purpose and character of the use being made; (2) the nature of the copyrighted work (whether the work is more informational or creative in nature); (3) the amount and substantiality of the portion of the work used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and (4) the effect of the unauthorized copy or use on the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.  

In general, in an educational context, if the material copied constitutes a relatively small portion of the copyrightable work as a whole – such as a short quote from an article or book, a few lines from a poem, or a few frames from a video or movie – the use is likely to qualify as a fair use.  

  1. When is a Work in the Public Domain

A public domain work is a creative work that is not protected by copyright and which may be freely used by everyone.  The reasons that the work is not protected include:  (1) the term of copyright for the work has expired, (2) the author failed to satisfy statutory formalities to perfect the copyright, (3) the author dedicated the work to the public domain, or (4) the work is a work of the U.S. government.  

The rules for determining whether a work is or is not in the public domain are too complicated to summarize in this Copyright Policy.  In general, however, any work published before 1929, or any unpublished work created before 1904, are now in the public domain.  Of course, numerous other works are in the public domain, but determining whether that is or is not the case for any particular work can be an intensive exercise.  

As noted above, all works created by the U.S. government and its various commissions, agencies and authorities are, as a matter of law, in the public domain.  The same is true of many, but not all, state-created works.  (The rules vary from state to state.)  The same is not necessarily true of works created by contractors hired by a state or federal governmental commission, agency or authority.  Those works may or may not be in the public domain.  

As discussed below, do NOT assume that merely because a work is available online it is in the public domain.  

  1. What About the © Symbol

Any work protected by copyright should include a copyright notice, which often includes the © symbol, the word “Copyright”, or its abbreviation, “Copr.”  The presence of a copyright notice is a strong indication that the work is protected by copyright.  However, the use of a copyright notice is entirely optional.  An original creative work may still be protected by copyright regardless of whether the copyright symbol – © – is displayed. 

  1. When Should Credit Be Given

If content is copied from a third-party source, whether print, online or otherwise, credit should be given to that source.  However, giving credit to a third-party source does NOT mean that the use is not infringing, nor does it mean that the use qualifies as a fair use.  It’s just the fair and ethical thing to do. 

  1. Beware of the Internet

Many people tend to believe that anything found online or in a mobile app is freely available, or that, if something like a photograph or a manual can be found on the web, then anyone is free to copy and use it.  This is NOT the case.  Materials found on online or in a mobile app are subject to copyright protections just as a paper copy would be.  Chances are that any website you may visit includes Terms of Use (or equivalent) that spell out what you may, and may not, do with the materials available on that website.  When you want to use material you have found online, you should always look for Terms of Use (or equivalent).  A link to such Terms is typically located at the very bottom of the website’s home page (meaning that you may need to scroll all the way down to find the link), but the link could also be somewhere else on the page, such as the top.  A website’s Terms generally indicate that, by browsing the website, you agree to honor certain restrictions on use of the material dictated by the website owner, which sometimes includes displaying the original license agreement or maintaining certain logos on the material.  Many websites prohibit ANY use of materials found there without permission.  

In addition, please remember that, just because a work can be found on a particular website does NOT necessarily mean that the website owner is the owner of the copyright in that work.  Often, the website is a mere licensee, or even an infringer.