Friday, June 09, 2006

Copyright, Plagiarism and Use of Visuals

In this short post I would like to initiate some discussion in relation to copyright issues. Copyright issue is not just about regulations, but to my opinion, it is much about professional ethics and integrity. It is important to understand that it is not appropriate to grab images form other sites and present them as your own creations. It is also not always appropriate to even place an image developed by others in your own image creation even with the acknowledgement (for educational purposes) and permission (in particular if you intent to publish and commercialized). If you change original image little bit that does not protects you from the plagiarism. This is plagiarism (in the same way that copying text and presenting it without acknowledgement is). This module is to be highly interactive, innovative and creative "adventure” for students, and you must exercise this “freedom” to try new things and apply what you know at the intersection of science, art and design. Do not allow yourself to be “paralyzed” by thinking about your own technical skills, just let it go and try creating something, as I said before, even on paper, if you feel comfortable that way. You can scan or photograph it and post online. However, PowerPoint is easy and effective tool to develop visuals and in addition if you need royalty free graphics, there is plenty at Microsoft Office Clipart Library, however, you can use these only within Microsoft applications.

Please comment to these issues.

Here are some links providing information about copyright issues: Fair Use Guidelines For Educational Multimedia Copyright Kid Copyright 001 by Kate Thompson


At 12:25 PM, Blogger Mr. Chan CB said...

I find creating my own graphics to be fun. At least it's more interesting than writing a whole lot of text, especially for our reflections.

I'm sure Ryan (and Daniel) knows what I mean about the writing business. :)

At 3:17 PM, Blogger Kelvin Leung said...

I agree. It is also worth noting that a lot of so-called "public domain", "free" or "royalty-free" graphics out there actually have terms & conditions if we plan to use them in our own presentations. We will need to always read carefully and cite our sources properly (ie, give credit to the original author) before using them.

At 5:23 PM, Blogger Mr. Chan CB said...

I'm not sure with using graphics, but academically, it is fine to borrow someone else's text as long as it is cited. I can only presume it is the same with graphics.

At 10:50 PM, Blogger Daniel said...

I tried to bring the discussion about copyright to the classroom floor, however, somehow, I feel that the class was into really interested in discussing this. Again, technical issues appear to be in the minds of many.

At 4:20 PM, Blogger Maximilian Wat said...

Software, work and graphic are cognitive artifacts of other people. If we use them to create other knowledge, we are to obtain the permission of the authors. If there is a need to pay, it is our obligation to do so. It is similar to a tangible tools. We have to borrow or even buy if we want to use them.

Regarding to the educational context, I feel that the discussion of the “digital ethics” is rather weak in school in Hong Kong. The enforcement of a sound ICT copyright protection policy in school enhances the recognition of intellectual property. Thus, we can encourage creativity and mutual respect among people in school.

At 8:21 PM, Blogger Daniel said...

I agree with Maximilian that schools in Hong Kong should pay more attention to this issue and educate children to appreciate an dunderstant intellectual property issuis in digital world.

At 9:44 PM, Blogger Peon Cheung said...

It is also about the issue of information literacy. As a teacher librarian, I have done my part to educate my students to have respect for intellectual property when working on project-based learning. I think most teachers in HK have been gradually aware of this issue.

At 12:57 PM, Blogger Chris said...

I thought that the WWW was invented for information exchange to facilitate the learning community.

If the resources on the Internet are over-protected, the WWW will be losing its edge.

Considering the case of the "Bus Uncle", if the video was not uploaded to the Internet for free access and arbitrary editing, how could it become the talk of the town today?

Based on the "Bus Uncle" experience, I suggest that everything posted on the WWW should be freely copiable and reused.

Some people said that the over-protection of intellectual property right on the Internet had been suffocating the development of the Internet. What do you think?


At 1:04 PM, Blogger Christina MLIM said...

I agree that copyright issues are kind of ethical issue. It worth us to think it deeply. In fact, the intellectural property like, publication, idea, and graphic, they are the "private goods" that owned by the creator, however, the nature or the method of transfer is a little bit similar to "public goods". That's why many people are willing to become the "free rider".

I read several articles related to copyright before, most of the authors felt the issues were difficult to deal with, because it is difficult to let the readers understand the ownership issue. I really agree that we should teach the students when they are young.

At 5:13 PM, Blogger Daniel said...

Guys, Creative Commons is one way to declare what you are allowing others to do with your material, e.g. only view/read, distribute for free, have right to modify, etc. However, I think that we should not be confused here. Plagiarism is if you use someone else’s work and declare it as your own -- this is very unethical to do and if you get caught doing this in context of your study, the University has particular disciplinary process in place for punishment (e.g., 6 months suspension.

Copyright is different issues. In copyright people use someone else’s work to make financial or other gains with or without declaring it as their own. In this case person how broke copyright regulation and who made profit will be liable to pay compensation and in some cases (e.g. DVD piracy) to be legally prosecuted. That is how I understand this, but do feedback if you have to add something or correct me.

At 8:45 PM, Blogger Beryl said...

I really respect the copyright of the work of the creators. In school, it is our responsibility to nurture the respect of copyright laws. However, I have another viewpoint about the original idea of having the internet. It is supposed to be developed as a platform for easy sharing all around the world. Then it creates a huge platform for business and it helps people to make a good forture. People get things so easily and plagiarism problems get more serious.


At 8:18 PM, Blogger Keith Ma said...

I also think we should try our best to create objects ourselves. If it is inevitable to include others' works, acknowledgements must be made. Anyway, creativity and originality should be our prior concerns.

At 7:06 PM, Blogger Amy Kan said...

Plagiarism is a serious offence. It is important that we have to respect intellectual property, authors, creators and inventors. But I have difficulty in judging whether it is legal to use certain images or pictures which are commonly used among people especially those Sanrio or Disney cartoons.


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