Copyright Crash CourseCopyright Crash CourseCopyright Crash CourseCopyright Crash Course

Photograph of Georgia Harper




Scholarly Communications Advisor
The University Libraries,
University of Texas at Austin
P.O. Box P
PCL 3.200
Austin, Texas 78713-8916

Phone: 512.495.4653; Cell 512.971.4325


Curriculum vitae

January 2011


Doctor of Jurisprudence
University of Texas at Austin School of Law, 1988, with Honors, Order of the Coif

B.S. Elementary Education
University of Texas at Austin, 1975, with High Honors

Work Experience 

University of Texas at Austin Libraries
September 2006 – present

My focus as Scholarly Communications Advisor for the University Libraries is digital access and its effect on the future of the research library, and copyright concerns raised by staff and patrons.

Office of General Counsel, University of Texas System Administration
September 1991 – August 2006

In my capacity as the Section manager and copyright attorney for the University of Texas System’s 15 Universities and Health institutions, I provided advice and counsel on copyright and other intellectual property matters, contracts involving the Board of Regents’ intellectual property and other matters related to research, scholarly publishing and education. I also coordinated and oversaw the delivery of additional intellectual property services by the Intellectual Property Section.

Pillsbury, Madison & Sutro (Now Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP), San Jose California
January 1989 – August 1991
Associate in the Business Law Practice

From 2006 through 2008 I enjoyed a 2 year appointment as the the Virtual Scholar for the University of Maryland, University College’s (UMUC) Center for Intellectual Property (CIP), and hosted the Center’s blog, Collectanea. In connection with this appointment, I contributed to its quarterly newsletter, helped to plan its annual (2008) symposium, provided a 2 week online workshop and gave the keynote address at the symposium (see below).

I am invited to lecture and conduct workshops on a wide variety of copyright topics of interest to universities, libraries, archives and museums, among others. I lecture at international, national, regional and local seminars, symposia, and conferences for audiences and participants that include attorneys, university and college faculty, staff and students, library professionals and administrators. I have also been asked to advise national and state organizations representing universities and libraries on issues involving copyright law.

I have taught copyright courses at the University of Texas at Austin’s Graduate School of Information (Library and Information Science) and at the Law School. I provided online copyright course materials each semester to faculty working through the UT System UTTeleCampus to provide distance education courses.

Prior to my legal career, I taught at public and private schools in Austin, Texas. I taught trainable mentally retarded teens and young adults (The Austin State School), severely and profoundly multi-handicapped children (Austin Independent School District) and normal pre-schoolers (All-Austin Cooperative Nursery School) over an eight-year period from 1975 to 1983.


Harper, G. and Schaub, E. (2007). Digitizing, licensing and fair use: A case study in transition strategy for image collection conversion. Visual Resources Association Bulletin 34(3).

[Abstract] Boyer, P. J. and Harper, G. (2007). "Fair Use" of Copyrighted Material in a Graduate Medical Education Curriculum: Pushing the Electronic Envelope.  presented at Anatomic Pathology Informatics and Imaging Support for Translational Medicine. Pittsburgh, PA September 9 - 12, 2007. [submitted to Archives of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine]

Copyright Law and Policy in a Networked World, a compendium published by the National Association of College and University Attorneys (NACUA), Harper, G., Editor (January 2007)

Harper, G. (2006). Revised Section on Copyright and Patent Law. The Law of Higher Education, 4th Edition, by William A. Kaplin, Barbara A. Lee, Jossey-Bass.

Copyright Issues in Higher Education, a monograph of the National Association of College and University Attorneys, June 2001, 2005

Copyright Law for Archivists, The Association of Research Libraries, January 2004

NIDRR Grantee Questions about Copyright, The Research Exchange, Volume 8, Number 1, 2003

Developing a Comprehensive Copyright Policy to Facilitate Online Learning, The Journal of College and University Law, Volume 27, Number 1, Summer 2000

University Liability for Faculty Infringements, Higher Education Law Bulletin, Volume VIII, Nos. 1 and 2 Spring and Summer 2000

Copyright – Endurance and Change, Educause Review November/December 2000

The Copyright Crash Course Tutorial, an online publication of the Office of General Counsel, The University of Texas System,, maintained 1999 – present

Crews, K. and Harper, G. (1999). The immunity dilemma: Are state colleges and universities still liable for copyright infringements? Journal of the American Society for Information Science 50(x)

The Copyright Crash Course, an online publication of the Office of General Counsel, The University of Texas System,, maintained 1996 – present

Copyright & The University Community, a monograph of the Office of General Counsel, The University of Texas System, August 1993

A Sample of Recent Invited Regional, National and International
Lectures, Seminars and Workshops

Basic Copyright Issues

“Copyright 101 Pre-Conference Workshop,” presented for the Center for Intellectual Property, at its annual meeting in Washington, D.C. 2010

“The Constitution and Copyright,” presented for the Amherst Library, on Constitution Day in Amherst, Mass. 2010

“Copyright Issues for Administrators Handling Electronic Theses and Dissertations,” presented at the 13th Annual International Symposium on Electronic Theses and Dissertations in Austin, TX. 2010

“Crash Course in Copyright for Lawyers New to Higher Education,” presented for the National Association of College and University Attorneys (NACUA), at its annual meeting in Chicago, Illinois. 2006

Fair Use and Library Matters

“Fair Use and Risk Analysis in Digitizing Archival Materials,” presented for the Online Computer Library Center, at its Undue Diligence Symposium in San Mateo, CA. 2010

“Fair Use Always Depends on Context,” a full-day library workshop presented for the State University Libraries of Montana at their annual meeting in Missoula, MT. 2010

“Integrating Access to Digital Course Materials,” a 2-week online workshop presented through the Center for Intellectual Property, UMUC, Hyattsville, MD. 2008

“The Effects of Mass Digitization Projects on Copyright Law, Policy and Practice,” presented as keynote address at UMUC’s Center for Intellectual Property’s Annual Intellectual Property Seminar. Hyattsville, MD. 2008

“Copyright Law for Mass Digitization Projects,” presented at Yale University, Sterling Memorial Library. 2008

“Digital Distribution of Course Materials,” presented by online videoconference for the North Dakota University System Board of Regents, 2007

Professional Memberships

Texas Bar Association, admitted to practice January 1993

California Bar Association, admitted to practice June 1989

Texas Library Association and Texas State Library and Archives Commission

Member, "Transforming Texas Libraries" Visioning Taskforce, 2007

National Association of College and University Attorneys

Chair, Publications Committee - 2002 – 2003; 2003 – 2004
Member, Task Force on Electronic Delivery - 2002 – 2003
Member, Planning Committee - 2001 – 2002
Vice-Chair, Publications Committee - 2000 – 2001
Member, Publications Committee - 1998 –1999
Member, Information Services Committee - 1997 – 1998

Council on Library Information Resources

Member, Advisory Committee on Scholarly Communication, 2006

Association of American Universities

Member, Copyright Task Force for Copyright Legislation Review Board – 1998

Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana

Member, Intellectual Property Advisory Committee for “The Variations2 Project:  Indiana University Digital Music Library Project”

Other Memberships

Travis Audubon Society

            Chair of Field Trips Committee, 2002 – 2004

Awards and Honors

Center For Intellectual Property’s Inaugural award of its ‘Georgia Harper Copyright Literacy Award, 2010

University of Texas School of Information IMLS Digital Library Fellow, 2006-2008

Named a Fellow of the National Association of College and University Attorneys, 2001


Upon request

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The Copyright Crash Course © 2001, 2007 Georgia K. Harper