Permissions Maze [...]

Part of the problem with copyright is not just things are not permissible, but that to obtain permissions for simple uses requires navigating a complex bureaucracy.

Whatever the scope of the educational use and fair use exceptions to copyright liability, at least some types of educational uses of content require rightsholders’ permission. Consider, for example, a teacher who reproduces an entire copyrighted book, film, or song, in either analog or digital format, and without a license distributes it to all students in a class for their unrestricted use. If such activity were permitted, and thus repeated in classrooms everywhere, it would cause significant harm to the market for the copied works and might reduce incentives for their creation. Presumably, such distribution would and should constitute copyright infringement.

Because of the so-called �permissions maze,� however, securing licenses can be extraordinarily difficult, particularly for individuals and noncommercial institutions lacking time and resources to engage in the sophisticated �rights clearance� now common within some content industries. The experiences documented in our case studies involving New World Records and WGBH illustrate these problems � and those entities have comparatively more resources and legal knowhow than most other educational users. Navigating the permissions maze requires users to determine if a license is required; locate the appropriate rightsholder; agree to a license; pay for the license; and carry out other terms and restrictions of the license. Trouble can arise at any of these points. The overall result is an onerous clearance process, especially for individual educators or small nonprofit enterprises. (Source)