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What are Public Performance Rights?

U.S. Copyright law requires that all videos displayed outside of the home, or at any place where people are gathered who are not family members, such as in a school, library, auditorium, classroom or meeting room must have public performance rights. Public performance rights are a special license that is either purchased with a video or separately from the video to allow the video to be shown outside of personal home use. This statute applies to all videos currently under copyright. This includes videos you have purchased, borrowed from the library, or rented from a video store or services like Netflix.

Exceptions for Classroom Video Use

The classroom use exemptions allows instructors or students who are displaying video in the course of face-to-face teaching activities of a nonprofit educational institution, in a classroom or similar place devoted to instruction do not require public performance rights. However, any other public display of video on campus outside of use in a specific course, including by student or faculty groups, requires a public performance license.


Obtaining Publish Performance Right

If you wish to show a video in the library that does not already have public performance rights included you will be required to provide proof that you have obtained a public performance license for your use.

The following licensing companies sell public performance rights.

Library Media's Public Performance Rights FAQ