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The chaos of Copy & Paste

Tad not drinking wine

Photo Credit: ekai via Compfight cc

Reading about plagiarism and copyright this week made me realize how huge and important (!) this topic is. You can inquirer into this topic from many different perspectives: location where you are in the world, from the perspective of the students, the teachers, the bloggers, from the perspective of the kind of media (article online, movie, blog, image, comic, … endless).

First of all we as teachers need to know about copyright and plagiarism. Working at a PYP school and not having any books for teaching (which I really like) makes it difficult to have resources and of course we get them through the internet. Wikipedia says about Fair Use:

In United States copyright law, fair use is a doctrine that permits limited use of copyrighted material without acquiring permission from the rights holders. Examples of fair use include commentary, search engines, criticism, news reporting, research, teaching, library archiving and scholarship.

I was happy to read the word teaching, but what about In United States copyright law?  Germany seems to be always kind of stricter. Reading the wording of the law I’m realizing that I’m not a lawyer and I’m not used to read laws. Meaning it is complicated. Said very simple: § 53 Urheberrechtsgesetz (UrhG) allows us to copy for the use during lessons. There are different interpretations (using something during the lesson or saving something on the computer) written on the German website lo-recht (Recht und digitale Medien): Vervielfältigungen für Unterricht und Prüfungen. But … I have to admit that the article is quite old and I still feel quite confused. Therefore – my German colleagues (working at a German school): Please let me know more. How do you handle those issues? Thx. We need to know as teachers, for us and as important for getting the students aware.

At the moment Grade 5 at our school is working on their exhibition topics. In German the students are inquiring into a ecosystem which is related to their Central Idea. Right in time I heard about compfight, a flickr search engine, which gives you the code for attaching the caption. I also realized that Google allows you find pictures with certain usage rights (Advanced Search). Very helpful for the students is as well EasyBib: A Free Automatic Bibliography and Citation Generator.

In the context of the students writing their pieces for their exhibition as well as in the context of myself writing blog entries, the website plagiarism.org was very informative and surprising for me. There are 10 types of plagiarism and I’m wondering now how much remix and mashup my students do?! And what about myself? I’m reading several websites/articles and recently I started to write down the source. Then I try to build my opinion, combine it with my own experience, ask new (or old) questions – what am I doing?

Last but not least the readings this week made me think about licensing own work. It feels good to know more about Flickr and Creative Commons which allows you to license your work easily if you want to share it. I don’t have to share and contribute so much at the moment, but I told a friend about it who is an artist and she was very happy to hear about it. Let’s spread the word! That is also part of all this with Coetail.

And how about 3D plagiarism? Today at the Maker Munich there was a talk about: Piracy hoch drei: Öffnet die 3D-Technologie wirklich die Büchse der Pandora?  – in English something like:

Piracy power three: Does the 3D technology really opens the Pandora’s Box?

I’m living in such a exciting and interesting time!

 

 

One reply on “The chaos of Copy & Paste”

It’s all very interesting isn’t it? I used to feel that if someone put it up on the internet then they open themselves up to people taking it and making it their own. Is that the right way to look at it? No. I think our best judgement about how to give credit and what to use when we “take” from the internet is the most common sense way to look at these things. Put yourself in the creator’s shoes – would you want someone taking your work without asking? I am going to try something with my students this week that have them think about this idea…..

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