Copyright & Films/Movies Shown Outside Formal PC Classes (Public Performance Rights Needed)

September 18, 2019

PC Faculty, Students and Staff,

Please be reminded of the Providence College Copyright Policy (see below).

Under US Copyright Law, a film/movie (DVD, streaming, etc.) shown to PC students and faculty in a face-to-face class as a component of the class/course, is often considered FAIR USE (i.e., does NOT require public performance rights).

However, any Providence College showing of a film/movie (DVD, streaming, etc.) NOT in a face-to-face classroom or classrooms as a component of a formal PC class/course, requires you to obtain (often to purchase) PUBLIC PERFORMANCE RIGHTS.

Explicit details can be found on pages 18-20 and 34-35 of the Providence College Copyright Policy and Guidelines at:

Any questions should be directed to the PC Library at the Research Desk or:
Phone:             401.865.2581
Text:                 401.484.7004
The Library Staff can provide information to assist you in obtaining PUBLIC PERFORMANCE RIGHTS if needed.

You (e.g., your department, club, organization, etc.) will be responsible for the costs of public performance rights.

Russell Bailey, Ph.D. – Professor & Library Director
Gail Dyer – Assoc. VP/Assoc. General Counsel
Charles J. Haberle – Assistant Vice President for Academic Affairs, Academic Facilities and Technology Planning


The federal Copyright Law (Title 17, United States Code, Section 101 and following) requires all members of the Providence College community to respect the proprietary rights of owners of copyrights and to refrain from actions that constitute an infringement of copyright or other proprietary rights. Copyright Compliance Guidelines have been developed to assist members of the community to comply with federal copyright law. Members of the Providence College community are expected to become familiar with these Copyright Guidelines, to act with careful consideration of their requirements, and to seek assistance whenever necessary and as directed.

Willful disregard of Providence College’s Copyright Policy by members of the community may result in personal liability in the event that legal action is taken against them. Further, the College may refuse to defend employees named in a court suit and employees may be personally liable for any damage incurred as a result of the copyright violation.