An exception to copyright law exists, but is all too frequently misapplied: the right of quotation. Works protected by copyright may be used for the purpose of quotation. This can apply to academic works, news reports, satires, parodies or documentaries dealing with the topic under discussion. Countries including the USA and Israel also allow quotation in teaching and educational materials and by search engines.

The key concept here is fair use: quotations from works protected by copyright must be used within the framework of an independent work on the topic. Assembling “collections of quotations” is not covered. While no fixed rule exists that would define exactly how much can legitimately be cited from another work, borrowing too much will not be judged to be covered by “fair use” if a dispute arises. Even when sources are given, one may not use third-party material to embellish one’s own work.

As is always the case, rules differ and are interpreted differently in different places. As such, whether footage can be used for the purpose of quotation, and the form it can be used in, must be determined individually on a case-by-case basis to avoid unpleasant surprises. We would be happy to help you with this.
Enquiries to