This film is free and open to the public
Oct. 13, 2008
KALAMAZOO--Western Michigan University officials are urging all students, faculty and staff to beware of copyright infringement, specifically with regard to public screenings of films.
"There are a number of widespread misconceptions about copyright law as it applies to showing films," says Thom Myers, director of electronic communication. "Our office, university relations, has had to address these misconceptions, because of our role in helping publicize campus events."
Working with the general counsel's office at the University, Myers has developed a list of myths about showing movies on college campuses.
"Every movie you rent from the local video store opens with a warning that the movie is intended for private home use only, and violations will be subject to prosecution," says Myers. "They are not kidding, and the penalties can be significant.
"Every event publicized in WMU News, the Western Herald, Kalamazoo Gazette and most other public news media is immediately indexed and searchable in Google and other search engines. If you promote a public screening of a movie for which you have not secured permission, and a movie owner wants to go after someone violating their copyright, it is not that difficult to find you."
Myers is not an attorney, and the advice offered in this article does not constitute a legal opinion. For legal opinions, consult an attorney in copyright law. For suggestions on how to obtain rights for a public screening of a film, WMU faculty members and student organizations may contact Thom Myers at email@example.com.
Media contact: Tonya Hernandez, (269) 387-8400, firstname.lastname@example.org