When you download a file from the internet (or when you copy-and-paste or save something from the internet), you are making a copy of it, which is a ‘restricted act’ in law.  This kind of copying is fine in some circumstances, but not in others.

Downloading for research and private study from free-to-view websites. Provided that what you download is for your own research or private study, you can argue that copying material from the internet is ‘fair’ in law. Obviously if you download material for any other purpose, you cannot argue that it is ‘fair’ on these grounds.  If you initially download something for research or private study, and then subsequently use it for some other purpose, then that other purpose does not count as ‘fair’ on these grounds.

You should delete or destroy any copy of anything that you have downloaded for your research or private study as soon as you no longer need it for those purposes.

Downloading from University subscription e-journals, e-books, online databases etc. Loughborough University Library subscribes to a great variety of e-resources, including e-journals, e-books and online databases.  Access enables you to view, save and print from these resources.  The publishers of these e-resources set their own terms and conditions as to how much you can print out. E.g. e-books usually only let you print off one chapter.

If you want to download a work which is not covered by legal exceptions or by the licences that the University holds, you can always get in touch with the copyright owner of the work and ask for permission directly.

For more information please contact the University Copyright Advisor:;

01509 222351.

Updated by C. Greasley 2 February 2018

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