At the 2010 American Occupational Therapy Association Annual Conference & Expo, a colleague witnessed his own lecture slides presented verbatim in another person’s workshop without author acknowledgment. My colleague had posted his slides, which were materials from a course he developed and teaches, to a university course repository. The workshop presenter likely accessed my colleague’s slides online, copied them verbatim, and now presented the material as her own. Although this incident is a clear example of copyright violation, legal practices guiding copyright ownership and protection have become muddled in the digital age by Internet access to almost all information. The relative ease of accessing and copying information has forced traditional copyright conventions to be reconsidered. In this incident, although copyright infringement is clear, no well-defined legal practice exists to secure damages for the rightful author.

The Copyright Act of...

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