fair use


Definition of fair use

: a legal doctrine that portions of copyrighted materials may be used without permission of the copyright owner provided the use is fair and reasonable, does not substantially impair the value of the materials, and does not curtail the profits reasonably expected by the owner

Examples of fair use in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The motion argues that Trump should escape the lawsuit on fair use grounds. Eriq Gardner, Billboard, "Donald Trump Tries 'Fair Use' Defense in 'Electric' Copyright Lawsuit," 12 Nov. 2020 Several justices focused their attention on these fair use questions. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "Google’s Supreme Court faceoff with Oracle was a disaster for Google," 8 Oct. 2020 Software makers including Microsoft and a leading association of internet companies are supporting Google, saying copyright law must allow some fair use of computer programs to promote follow-on technologies and interoperability between programs. Brent Kendall, WSJ, "Supreme Court Weighs Copyright Fight Between Google and Oracle," 7 Oct. 2020 Sotomayor seemed open to Google's claim that by adapting Oracle's code to serve a different purpose — establishing a new mobile operating system — Google qualified for fair use protections. Brian Fung, CNN, "Supreme Court puzzles over the nature of software in landmark Google v. Oracle case," 7 Oct. 2020 And separately, does Google have fair use to whatever is copyrighted? Eriq Gardner, Billboard, "A Supreme Court Without RBG May Impact Hollywood's Grip on Intellectual Property," 21 Sep. 2020 Earlier this month, Minaj took the position in a summary judgment motion that her demo recording made fair use of Chapman's copyright. Eriq Gardner, Billboard, "Nicki Minaj Wants Jury to Resolve Copyright 'Who Done It?' in Battle With Tracy Chapman," 25 Aug. 2020 The scans are protected to prevent distribution by borrowers, and Internet Archive argues that their practices fall under fair use. Theresa Machemer, Smithsonian Magazine, "Publishers Sue Internet Archive for Copyright Infringement," 3 June 2020 This is one of the reasons the courts found that book scanning for a search engine was legal under fair use. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "Lawsuit over online book lending could bankrupt Internet Archive," 1 June 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'fair use.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of fair use

1847, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for fair use

Time Traveler

The first known use of fair use was in 1847

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Statistics for fair use

Last Updated

19 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Fair use.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/fair%20use. Accessed 30 Nov. 2020.

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More Definitions for fair use

fair use

Legal Definition of fair use

see use sense 2

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