University of Leeds

The LUTube replacement, VideoLeeds, is now live. From 28 September 2015, staff and students will no longer be able to publish new content to LUTube and should use VideoLeeds instead. Existing LUTube content will continue to be viewable until March 2016. Details

Copyright Advice

What is copyright?

Copyright protects creative or artistic works and exists as soon as a work is created. You can use it to protect the work that you create. When you put your work into LUTube you can choose options to share or restrict the copyright.

If the material you are putting into LUTube was created or belongs to someone else you must check their copyright too.

How do I make sure that my video does not infringe someone else’s copyright?

The best way to ensure that you are not infringing copyright is to make your video production completely original and unique. Although creating a video from scratch can be time consuming, it can ensure that your resource meets your learning objectives and will be highly relevant to your audience. Things to think about when creating your own video:

  • Get permission / consent forms signed from anyone playing a significant role in your video (i.e. taking a speaking part). Ideally this form should relinquish any performers rights to the work. An alternative model consent form that could be tailored to suit your needs from the JISC Web2Rights project is provided under a Creative Commons licence.
  • Make sure that the soundtrack as well as the visuals are owned by you or cleared for use in your production.
What if I want to use someone else’s content for my video?

This will all depend on where the content comes from and who owns the copyright. There are some significant areas in which you can use other people’s content, for example videos recorded from terrestrial TV channels complying with the ERA licence, videos released under specific creative commons licences and videos from specific collections that have been cleared for educational use (see below for more information).

If the video that you wish to use does is not already cleared for use then you must contact the copyright owner(s) and obtain their permission before using their work. Simple guidelines about obtaining persmissions can be found is provided under a Creative Commons licence from the Web2Rights project. A variety of sample release and permission request forms can be found on the Web2rights webiste. It remains however, your responsibility to loacte and contact the copyright owner to obtain clearance.

ERA licence

The University of Leeds subscribes to The Educational Recording Agency (ERA) licence which permits staff at the Uiversity to record broadcasts from the main terestrial broadcasters and play, copy and distribute the material to students under certain agreed conditions:

  • Content must be to viewed on campus; LUTube will not show ERA content beyond the University of Leeds campus
  • Content must be labelled correctly, ERA content wil not be able to be uploaded to LUTube unless this has been carried out.

University of Leeds library has more information about the ERA licence.

Protecting my content

Any content that is uploaded to LUTube must carry with it an indication of its copyright status and the terms under which it is being used. You will be able to choose the level of restriction you place on your content and as the right to videos can be jointly owned, you should also specify exactly who owns the rights to the video you are uploading.

Creative Commons licencing offers you the option of protecting your rights while allowing others to have more freedom in how they use your content than they might have under standard copyright restrictions. You can find out more about the options offered by the various Creative Commons licences on their website and the Web2Rights project have produced a document outlining some Top Tips for issuing licences to third parties who wish to use your content.

Collections / Repositories

There is a great deal of excellent content that can be found in a variety of collections and repositories that has been cleared for educational use. This content will often be licenced under specific licensing conditions that you may be asked to agree to and you should take care to ensure that you act within these conditions.


There are some standard exceptions to copyright restrictions that may help you when assessing whether to use a piece of video. Although if you are unsure you should always check the legal position, permitted acts include:

  • Insubstantial use (the definition of this can be qualititive as well as quantative)
  • Fair dealing for the purpose of criticism or review
  • Bona Fide examinations (anything that counts towards a final grade)
  • For use in instruction in film making and sound recording.

Web2rights project from JISC including tips on protecting your rights, consent forms, IP toolkit and FAQs:

JISC Legal is a free information service offering high quality legal information to further and higher education relating to the use of information and communications technologies.

For further information and support in this area contact Janet Jurica within the Library Service.