I am building a professional development course for my school district and have included the usual information about copyright and fair use. All that I am missing is the obligatory horror story about some poor educator who violated copyright/fair use and was made to suffer in some way.
So far, Google has not been my friend.
So... Does anyone have a story for me?
I just did a search on words like "School sued over copyright", etc. And there don't seem to be many cases, at least that make the news. Even on those cases, the publisher does not seem to seek money damages.
I suspect that most large publishers would handle this type of matter informally by contacting the school. They just have too much to lose as they want to gain institution's long-term business, and being known as a bully (even if they are in the right) would not be good for business perhaps.
I also think that most institutions try to comply for moral reasons, especially if anyone calls them to task. Their repetition is also on the line.
If you do want to give some scare stories, look at some of the enforcement actions of the Digital Millennium when it comes to music downloads by the RIAA. Many individuals have settled for thousands of dollars. The first case to go to trial found a single mother from Minnesota liable for $220,000 for having music files in a shared folder. Search for Jammie Thomas to find more about that case.
The Jammie Thomas tip is something I should have thought of. Doh!
This looks promising, too - http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/law_librarian_blog/2008/04/georgia-state-s.html. It seems to be a flagrant example of copyright/fair use, but I will have to read more.
Two McLean High School students have launched a court challenge against a California company hired by their school to catch cheaters, claiming the anti-plagiarism service violates copyright laws.
The lawsuit, filed this week in U.S. District Court in Alexandria, seeks $900,000 in damages from the for-profit service known as Turnitin. The service seeks to root out cheaters by comparing student term papers and essays against a database of more than 22 million student papers as well as online sources and electronic archives of journals. In the process, the student papers are added to the database.
I believe you speak German (?) so the following case might interest you. See http://www.4teachers.de/?action=showtopic&sid=&dir_id=6727&topic_id=9807
It concerns the Swiss learning-materials exchange website www.unterstufe.ch who now have a very comprehensive terms and conditions for upload since they got their fingers burnt.
Alan Hess - Switzerland