Skip to Main Content

Copyright, Licensing and GDPR: DMU Replay and Copyright

Using Images In Your Teaching

Though it is easy to find and download images from the internet, you will find that most will be subject to copyright protection, and unless you own the copyright yourself, it may not be legal to download and use them in your lecture that is recorded.

However there are ways in which you can legally use images in your recorded lectures:

  • Use images where copyright has expired (see table for duration of copyright);

  • Use images licensed under a Creative Commons (CC) licence - all CC licences mean the copyright owner must be attributed and there may be other restrictions on its use;
  • Create your own images;
  • Obtain permission to use them from the copyright holder;
  • Use images under a copyright exception, such as 'illustration for instruction' provided the use is considered fair and you acknowledge the owner of the work (see above).  Note this is only acceptable where the recorded lecture is held on the Institution’s VLE.

If you do not know the owner of the image you have acquired from the internet, you can use TinEye or Google Reverse Image Search to find out who owns the image. 

DMU Replay and Copyright

You can use copyright protected works such as images, diagrams and video clips in a lecture PowerPoint presentation, however you will not be legally able to record the lecture with the contents of the PowerPoint unless you qualify under one or more of the following:

  • The copyright period of the material has expired (see copyright duration chart).

  • You have permission of the rights holder to use the material in a specific manner.

  • The copyright is owned by the University.

  • You own the copyright.

  • It is covered by the relevant statutory exception of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act.

Type of Material

Duration of Copyright

Literary and Artistic Works

70 years from death of the author.

If several authors then 70 years following death of the last surviving author

Dramatic & Musical Work

70 years from publication, if there is no author named.

Sound Recordings

70 years from recording and performance rights


70 years from the last to die: director, producer, author of screenplay, composer of soundtrack


50 years from the date of the broadcast

Typographical Layout

25 years from publication

Crown Copyright

125 years from publication but subject to a waiver

Unpublished works made before 1 August 1989

Copyright expires on 31 December 2039

In UK copyright law there is an exception which allows extracts of copyright material to be included in teaching materials for the purposes of instruction; this is s.32 Illustration for Instruction. There are a number of considerations to take into account if you wish to rely on this exception:

  • all types of copyright works can be copied for the sole purpose of illustration for instruction – to illustrate a teaching point;
  • use is subject to fair dealing - so copying is limited to what is required for the purpose and must not impact on the rights holder;
  • copying must be done by a person giving or receiving instruction;
  • copying must be for a non-commercial purpose only;
  • the work must be sufficiently acknowledged.

So what is Fair Dealing?

‘Fair dealing’ is a legal term used to establish whether the use of copyright material is lawful or whether it infringes copyright. There is no statutory definition of fair dealing and a judgement is taken on a case by case basis. Factors that have been identified by the courts as relevant in determining an infringement of copyright include:

  1. Does the use affect the market for the original work? If a use of a work acts a substitute for it, causing the owner to lose revenue, then it is not likely to be fair;

  2. Is the amount taken reasonable and appropriate? Was the amount used necessary? Usually only a part of a work may be used.

You can use this exception only where the lecture recording is available via our virtual learning environment and is password protected.  As soon as the lecture recording is shared outside the university protected systems, then all copyright content has to be edited from the lecture recording, unless it is out of copyright, you have permission, licensed and/or you or the university owns the copyright.  Note, copyright exceptions are your defence for using third party copyright material and not a right.

Creative Commons Licences

Images released under a Creative Commons licence can be used in your teaching as long you follow the licence conditions the image is released under.  A description of the types of licence images are released under are given here.  You can also search for images on the Creative Commons site from here.

Commercial Videos and DVD's

You are permitted to show commercially purchased videos and dvd’s for educational purposes in a lecture presentation.  However, the same content should not be recorded for DMU Replay unless you have permission to do so.

Material From YouTube

Copyright in videos from sites such YouTube rests with the creator.  They can generally be used in lecture presentations for educational purposes but should not be recorded in DMU Replay, unless you have specific permission to do so from the copyright holder.