Copyright allows a rightsholder to control use of the work in question. The copyright owner, subject to copyright law exceptions, controls who may:
- Copy the work
- Issue copies of the work to the public
- Rent or lend the work to the public
- Perform, show or play the work in public
- Communicate the work to the public – this includes making the work available online, and broadcasting the work
- Make an adaptation of the work or do any of the above in relation to an adaptation.
The definition of 'public' in relation to FE and HE is likely to include staff and students. So it may be infringement by communication to the public to include on the college or university intranet, a student’s or a copyright owner’s work without their permission.
This would be the case where, for example, a video from YouTube was embedded into a VLE. Although copying may not take place the embedding is likely to be considered 'communication to the public' which is a restricted act and would require permission from the rightsholder.
Copyright can exist separately and collectively in the components of any particular work. For example, the elements that constitute a website may include the web page, title, sound effects, images or pictures on the page and the address or domain name. Apart from the copyright of the website itself, each of these components grant separate rights to their owners.