Fair use is the concept that people can use copyrighted works under certain qualifying circumstances. (ARL, 2012). Fair use is important because it gives non for profit institutions and circumstances the ability to use valuable work for the greater good and improvement of everyone. Fair use creates an environment where scholars can feel comfortable researching and building upon other scholar’s work. However, the rules of fair use can purposefully vague, making it difficult to interpret which scenarios are protected under the concept and which are not. Since each case is unique, they must be reviewed on an individual basis (ARL, 2012).
The U.S. Copyright office states that fair use is the legal doctrine that "promotes freedom of expression by permitting the unlicensed use of copyright-protected works in certain circumstances"(U.S. Copyright Office, 2018). Fair use makes it easier for nonprofit and educational organizations to use, contribute, and transform information for the betterment of society.