Copyright in MOOCs

The Coursera platform is publicly available online, which means that anyone with an Internet connection can sign up for a Coursera account and access and view the course content. This also means that when MOOC authors post content in Coursera, they are effectively publishing that content online for a global audience.

Using copyrighted materials a Coursera-based MOOC requires more diligence, than using those same materials in a classroom or learning management system at UBC. Since the audience is not limited to registered students, the use of third-party copyrighted material is more likely to require the permission of the copyright owner(s), and the inappropriate use of such material is more likely to generate complaints. Further, many of the educational exceptions that allow classroom use of copyrighted material without permission either do not apply in the MOOC environment or apply only in a limited fashion.