Category Archives: All News

STAFF SPOTLIGHT: Liz Declan, Scholarly Writing Specialist

If you’re writing for publication, the Office for Professional Writing, Publishing, and Communication (OPWPC) is here for you. They know that writing and public speaking can be overwhelming. That’s why they offer one-on-one consultations, workshops, and writing retreats to assist in your goals.

And the OPWPC is growing! This January, Liz Declan, the new Scholarly Writing Specialist, joined the team. We caught up with Liz to learn how her previous position at the university is influencing her role in the Academic Commons and what interesting projects she’s working on now. Keep reading to learn more about Liz and how she can help you, and even find out what superhero movies she and her seven-year-old daughter have been watching. 

What’s your title, and when did you start working in the Academic Commons? 
I am a Scholarly Writing Specialist, and I began working in the Academic Commons in January of 2022.

Before joining the Academic Commons, you were a faculty member on the East Falls campus. Can you talk to us about that: what courses did you teach? What motivated your desire to transition to your current role? 
As an adjunct, I taught Introduction to Academic Writing, Written Communication, and Multimedia Communication. I love teaching, but my passion for writing extends to many fields. I wanted a transition into an editorial role, and this position was the perfect coalescence of these many interests.

Are there aspects of your previous position as an instructor that have been helpful as you transition into this new position?  
The transition has been wonderful! I am really enjoying the work I am doing, and I’m finding that there’s a great balance of drawing upon skills I came to the position with and learning new skills in the role. I’m a firm believer that teaching is an experience that lends itself to any other role or job, so yes, absolutely. One obvious difference is that rather than coaching a student to become a better writer, I am making direct changes to texts or suggesting revisions. 

Can you describe your role, Scholarly Writing Specialist, a bit? What does that title mean, and what types of projects are you working on? 
As a Scholarly Writing Specialist, it’s my job to help faculty, staff, and members of the Jefferson community with scholarly publications and communications. The bulk of what I do is edit drafts of scholarly articles to be submitted to journals, but I also provide feedback on posters and presentations.

What is an interesting, unique, or informative scholarly article you’ve reviewed so far?  
I recently read a few manuscripts on topics related to outreach and programming for people with autism, which is a topic I’m passionate about, so that was both informative and interesting. It’s really exciting to see subjects I’m invested in and that I think need more attention being written about for publication. There have been several manuscripts on race, gender/LGBTQ experience, and/or disability, all of which excited me.

What advice would you give to someone who may be feeling overwhelmed or a bit frustrated with the writing and editing process?
I think in terms of being overwhelmed or frustrated, just knowing you’re not alone in feeling that way is helpful. Even professionals who are writers by trade experience that because writing is difficult and what we want to say often gets lost in translation from brain to pen to paper (or brain to hand to keyboard). I will mention, though, that the OPWPC helps with every stage of the process, so if someone is stuck or frustrated, reaching out to work through an issue is a good idea.

How can someone get in touch with you if they are interested in your services?  
My email is That is the best way to reach me! In addition, you can visit our website for information on upcoming workshops on topics like time management and writing abstracts, to schedule a one-on-one consult, or to find out about upcoming writing retreats.

When you’re not supporting the Jefferson community with their professional writing and communications projects, what are a few things you like to do with your time?
I have a seven-year-old daughter, and we’ve recently been watching our way through the Marvel movies, which has been a delight. I am also working on a memoir. Those two areas (motherhood and my creative projects) tend to be where all my extra time goes.

Learn more about the OPWPC and get support with your writing and communications projects today.

Register now for Women Makers & Designers: Inside the Textile & Costume Collection (March 8 with Jade Papa)

Celebrate International Women’s Day with Jade Papa, curator of the Design Center and Adjunct Professor, on Tuesday, March 8, at 7 p.m. This virtual event is open to the public.

Register now for “Women Makers & Designers: Inside the Textile and Costume Collection.” At the event, Jade Papa will give an insider’s look into the University’s historic collection, exploring pieces created by women makers and designers, including fashion designer Claire McCardell and textile designer Dorothy Liebes.

Following the presentation, stick around to ask questions about the collection. Learn more about the collection and register here. Check out Follow the Thread, a blog maintained by the Design Center staff and students, for weekly posts on the collection.

Coping with COVID on the College Campus: Virtual & In-Person Event (March 8)

Join Jeffersonians on Tuesday, March 8, for a panel discussion on the psychological impact of the pandemic on college students, faculty, and staff. Hear perspectives of students, an administrator, and a psychologist. Learn about dealing with uncertainty; positives/negatives of online learning; stress and anxiety due to isolation, changed living environments, and more. Box lunch provided for those on-site.

Date: Tuesday, March 8, 12:30 – 2pm
Format: In-person (Kanbar) and Zoom

Register here

Note: Jefferson faculty/staff: Completing attendance at the “Coping with COVID” event fulfills one of the five program requirements to earn the 2023 wellness credit. Once completed, you can visit the Aetna wellness portal and self-report your participation under “Rewards” and “Emotional Wellbeing.”

Moderator: Evan Laine, MA, JD, Faculty Director, Arlen Specter Center; Director, Law & Society Program, Thomas Jefferson Univ. – East Falls


  • Henry Humphreys, PhD, Vice-Chancellor, Dean of Students, Thomas Jefferson University – East Falls
  • C. Virginia O’Hayer, MA, PhD, Clinical Associate Professor, Psychiatry and Human Behavior, Thomas Jefferson University – Center City
  • Julia Smith, BA, Advanced Student, MS in Community & Trauma Counseling Program, Thomas Jefferson University – East Falls

Think Before You Pin: Pinterest & Copyright (4 OF 4)

The following post is the final of four celebrating Fair Use Week. Check back all week as librarians from the Scott and Gutman libraries bring you stories highlighting the importance of fair use in the lives of students and faculty. Read Post 1, Post 2, and Post 3 to catch up on all things fair use.

Think Before You Pin: Pinterest & Copyright
By Daniel Verbit, MLIS, Scholarly Communication Librarian, Gutman Library

Fair use is a section of the copyright law also called Title 17 of the United States Code that governs the protection of works while promoting scholarship.

In support of Fair Use Week, I talked with Edward Weisz, Co-Chair of Patent Prosecution Practice, Cozen O’Conner. He specializes in intellectual property and has been interviewed in many publications, including Women’s Wear Daily, for his expertise.

How does the law decide if there was copyright infringement?
Attorney Weisz provides an excellent example in which a group of students sketched a bowl of fruit. The class would all have similar results, each slightly different, as they created their original work from the same source material. Furthermore, each student would have copyright over their version; however, if someone did not look at the bowl of fruit and copied off their neighbor’s sketchpad, that would be copyright infringement.

How does this work in practice?
It is easy to take an image and use it in a different capacity in the modern digital world. In Tylor v. Hawaiian Springs, LLC, a college student used a photograph taken by photographer Vincent Tylor for a mock advertisement as part of a homework assignment and posted it to her Pinterest page. This instance is considered fair use, as it was for academic purposes.  

Next, Hawaiian Springs, a bottled water company, re-posted this image on its commercial Pinterest page. The company also edited and used the image on its Facebook page without contacting the photographer. The picture included the photographer’s signature, so there was no question about who took the photo.

The photographer discovered this and filed for a judgment against the company. The company attempted to use a fair use defense; however, as it was used for commercial use, the fair use defense did not apply. The judge in the case also included that a defendant’s knowledge or intent is irrelevant to their liability for copyright infringement. (Tylor v. Hawaiian Springs, LLC, Civ. No. 17-00290 HG-KJM (D. Haw. Jul. 3, 2019)

The photographer sent a cease and desist letter to the defendant to take down the posts using his copyrighted images. The company took down the images, and the case was filed later.

Since the image had been registered in the copyright office, and the company did not contest that they used it and others for commercial purposes, the judgment favored the photographer.

Copyright registration is not needed to secure the copyright; however, registering the copyright increases the creator’s compensation if someone trespasses on their copyright.

Copyright and textiles
Copyrights can be registered for fabric designs, patterns, and cross-stitch graphs in textile design. To submit for copyright registration, the creator must formally submit a swatch. To see an example of fabric swatches, visit the Design Center.

For students designing new fabric swatches, Professor Marcia Weiss, Director of the Fashion & Textiles Futures Center, provides the following advice:

“Do not work with existing textiles to inspire other collections. Consider what inspired you about the original design, and use that as a foundation to create something that is uniquely yours.”

If you have questions about registering copyright for the work you created, the Free Library of Philadelphia is our local Patent & Trademark Resource Center. They are designated by the United States Patent and Trademark Office to help you research and support you in your quest to register a copyright.

Visit the Thomas Jefferson University Libraries research guide to learn more about copyright.

Fair Use and Fanfiction (3 OF 4)

The following post is the third of four celebrating Fair Use Week. Check back all week as librarians from the Scott and Gutman libraries bring you stories highlighting the importance of fair use in the lives of students and faculty. Read post 1 and post 2 to catch up on previous fair use articles.

Fair Use and Fanction
By Larissa Gordon, Scholarly Communication Librarian, Scott Memorial Library

The fair use doctrine comes into play every day in the life of university students, allowing them to quote sources in their papers and access educational materials shared by their instructors. Review this infographic from the Association of College and Research Libraries to see how constant a presence fair use is in their lives. However, for many of us, fair use can also be integral to the hobbies that we enjoy after the school day is over.  

Take, for example, the popular fanfiction website Archive of Our Own (A03), which has seen increased traffic due to the pandemic, earning view count numbers in the millions each day. Websites like A03 owe their continued existence to the fair use doctrine. Without this exception to copyright law, fan fiction as an activity and art form would not be possible, as it is based on the characters, stories, and worlds created by commercially published authors. As mentioned in a previous post, US copyright law gives the right to create derivative works exclusively to the authors who created that original work. On the surface, this would seem to make fanfiction a clear violation of the law.  

However, according to many lawyers, such as those associated with the Organization for Transformative Works, the nonprofit organization that runs the AO3 website and offers legal advice and assistance to fanfiction authors, fanfiction is absolutely legal under the fair use doctrine. Fanfiction is fair use as long as the work is “transformative,” meaning that the new author added content with new meaning and value to the original work. The derivative work must also be “noncommercial” in nature, meaning the author does not make any money from their fanfiction. These two ideas line up with two of the four previously mentioned principles of fair use, which look at the “nature” of the work and its effect on the market for the original work.   

Going a bit further, it is also useful to note that copyright law extends to fanfiction authors. These creators own the copyright to the content they added to the original work, just as the commercially published authors continue to own the content they created. This fact helps create a vibrant community where fanfiction authors create derivative works, not just of a commercially published work but also of the work of other fanfiction authors. Without fair use, this activity and the community that supports it would not legally exist. Thank you, fair use!  

Sources and further reading: 

Is Fanfiction Legal? 
The New York University Journal of Intellectual Property and Entertainment Law 

Copyright and Fanfiction: A Primer 
American Library Association, Office for Intellectual Freedom 

How to Keep Fanfiction Legal and Avoid Trouble with Lawyers
SyFy Channel Website 

Fanfiction: Crossing the Line from Infringement to Fair Use 
Loyola University Chicago School of Law Blog

Stay tuned to this blog for the rest of the week, as librarians bring you stories highlighting the importance of fair use in the lives of students and faculty. 

Using Creative Commons and Public Domain to Avoid Copyright Infringement (2 OF 4)

The following post is the second of four celebrating Fair Use Week. Check back all week as librarians from the Scott and Gutman libraries bring you stories highlighting the importance of fair use in the lives of students and faculty. Check out the first article.

Using Creative Commons and Public Domain to Avoid Copyright Infringement
By Daniel Verbit, MLIS, Scholarly Communications Librarian, Gutman Library

In the press, sometimes you hear about musicians suing each other for stealing songs or copying art. Universities have been sued by publishers and authors have sued Google for digitizing their work. These infringements happen most often because one party assumes they are borrowing a small enough portion of the other’s work without trespassing on their copyright. This concept of borrowing a small portion of another person’s copyrighted work is called fair use and it is a complex topic that derives from the Constitution. The Copyright Act later clarified fair use in 1976. 

In William Patry’s Treatise, Patry’s Fair Use, the preface opens with “Fair use is good for creativity and innovation.” While fair use supports creativity, there is no easy way to determine what is fair use, and it’s a complicated legal question that can only be fully decided in court. But there are two tools that can help you avoid deciding if something is fair use: public domain and creative commons. 

Public Domain and Creative Commons
Public domain is a legal term for materials that are no longer covered by copyright. An example of public domain is when copyright has expired, or a creator decides to allow their work to be used freely for anyone to distribute, remix, adapt, and build upon in any medium or format, with no conditions.

The other type of copyright licensing is creative commons (CC), which comes in many forms. CC licensing is inspired by creators’ willingness to share their content for public use. Each creator can choose a licensing method that works for them. According to the creative commons website, “One goal of CC is to increase the amount of openly licensed creativity in ‘the commons’ — the body of work freely available for legal use, sharing, repurposing, and remixing. Through the use of CC licenses, millions of people around the world have made their photos, videos, writing, music, and other creative content available for any member of the public to use.”

CC licensing has been around for years, and there are over two billion items licensed. These vary in formats and types of media, including journals and books.

Finding Images and Music
If you are looking for an image to use or adapt for any use, you can use the creative commons without contacting the original creator.

How do you find these resources? They can be found on websites you may already be familiar with, such as Flickr, bandcamp and WikiCommons.  

Flickr is a site that hosts images from different creators. On Flickr, you can narrow your search based on what you would like to do with an image. For instance, you can filter for “Commercial Use allowed” if you want an image you can use for student club outfits without violating copyright.

This selection will include images that the creator has shared and are permitted to use. Six different types of licenses are available, which vary depending on permissions. Be sure to look at each license to understand what they require. For example, credit must be given to a creator when that creator has assigned a CC license.  

Suppose you are looking for music for an immersive installation or your portfolio slideshow. In that case, you can easily filter on bandcamp to find a piece that works for you. To hear more about music and fair use from the perspective of those in the music industry, check out this podcast.

Sharing Your Work
Creative commons is successful because creators believe in sharing their work. If you create new work and want to share it with the world to reuse, adapt, or remix, visit the creative commons website. Find the license that works best for you and help continue the cycle.

Learn More
If you have questions about copyright, fair use, or creative commons, visit our guide.

What is Fair Use Week? (1 OF 4)

The following post is the first of four celebrating Fair Use Week. Check back all week as librarians from the Scott and Gutman libraries bring you stories highlighting the importance of fair use in the lives of students and faculty. Read Post 2, Post 3, and Post 4, to learn more about fair use.

What is Fair Use Week?
By Larissa Gordon, Scholarly Communication Librarian, Scott Memorial Library

The 9th annual Fair Use Week celebration begins today (Feb. 21st, 2022). This event is sponsored by the Association of Research Libraries (ARL), a nonprofit membership organization supporting major public and private libraries.  According to the Fair Use Week website, this celebration is a time for libraries to “promote and discuss the opportunities presented” by the doctrine of fair use. 

Section 106 of the U.S. Copyright Act (title 17, U.S. Code) gives authors the exclusive right to distribute, display, and perform their creative works, and to create derivative works based on their original work. This means that individuals seeking to use an author’s work in these ways must first get permission from that author, as long as the work in question remains under copyright.  

Copyright law was initially developed to encourage creators to produce works by ensuring that creators would be able to earn an income from their work. However, if copyright law were to be applied rigidly, it would end up stifling many forms of media that we take for granted, such as news reporting, artistic criticism, research, and parody. It would also negatively impact educational settings by severely restricting what information educators could use in the classroom for instruction. 

Fair use was designed to function as a limitation on copyright law, making the law more flexible than it would have been if strictly applied. The fair use doctrine allows limited use of a copyrighted work under certain situations, making the above-mentioned forms of media possible. However, so that it can be truly flexible, the fair use doctrine does not lay out perfectly clear absolutes when it comes to telling us exactly how much of another creator’s work we can safely use.  

Instead, it presents four factors that must be considered in determining whether a particular use is “fair use.” Those factors require users to consider the overall purpose of the use, the nature of the original work, the amount of the work reproduced, and the effect of the new work upon the potential market for the original work. More detailed information on these four factors and how to apply them can be found on the US government copyright website. According to the copyright office, fair use violations are determined by the courts on a “case-by-case basis,” depending on to the unique facts of each situation. 

This is one reason why it is impossible for librarians to offer specific advice on copyright law. The law itself is not specific. A lot depends on the user’s intent, and it is the user who needs to self-evaluate their application of the fair use doctrine. However, librarians can help by providing tools and guidance, such as this guide on copyright from the Thomas Jefferson University Libraries. At an individual consultation, a librarian familiar with copyright and fair use can provide one-on-one guidance and support. 

Stay tuned to this blog for the rest of the week, as librarians bring you stories highlighting the importance of fair use in the lives of students and faculty. 

Love Data Week 2022 – Celebrating Data, Improving Data Management, and Increasing Productivity through LabArchives Research Notebook

Love Data Week (February 14 – 18, 2022) is an international celebration of data that aims to promote good data practices while building and engaging a community around topics related to research data management, sharing, preservation, and reuse. Join LabArchives for a weeklong series of events dedicated to helping you improve the organization of your data while taking steps towards better overall data management through the LabArchives Research Notebook.

Pick and choose the sessions below that interest you or attend all for a comprehensive look at LabArchives and how you can improve your research data management regimen. New this year are sessions on LabArchives Inventory.

Introductions and recordings
For new users or those in need of a refresher, LabArchives offers weekly webinars on the professional edition and inventory tool for researchers and the classroom edition for educators. Register or watch past webinar recordings.

Creating Templates to Standardize the Collection and Management of Data (45 minutes)
LabArchives recommends using templates to create a consistent entry format for documenting and tracking information. Templates can be made from reusable pages or entries that can easily be copied to save time. Once created, this form can be reused by all members of the notebook to provide consistency and a clear list of data requirements. Join this session to see examples of templates, how you can create your own, and reuse them.

Wednesday, February 16, 10:00 a.m.
Register here

Best Practices and Tips for Establishing Your Notebook’s Structure (30 minutes)
The LabArchives Research Notebook begins as a blank slate that is meant to be flexible so that you can customize the structure to complement current workflows. Join this session for a closer look at how you can use built-in layouts or set up a notebook using other popular structures, including project and grant-based, individual researcher-based notebooks, date-based, or team and company notebooks to manage shared materials for reference purposes.

Tuesday, February 15, 2:00 p.m.
Thursday, February 17, 10:00 a.m.

Register here

LabArchives Inventory (45 minutes)
This session is intended for new users that want to learn how LabArchives Inventory streamlines the organization, tracking, and ordering of lab inventory. Whether you need to order inventory from a vendor or manage your in-lab created materials, LabArchives Inventory provides a simple and customizable solution for your physical inventory management needs. During the session, learn how to customize inventory types and storage locations, add and manage lab inventory items, and use the ordering options to request and receive materials.

This webinar is offered every week. Register here.

Open Office Hours and Drop-in Consults (60 minutes)
Bring your questions (big or small) to this session and meet directly with LabArchives team members. They will be available for quick screen shares for feature questions and demos, and to discuss best practices and tips that are most relevant to you. Drop-in any time during the hour. Registration is required. Not a good time for you? Set up consults directly through the support team at

Wednesday, February 16, 1:00 p.m.
Register here

Science Communication Series: Social Media, Science Advocacy, Presentation Skills, and more

This joint series is brought to you by the College of Life Sciences, the Department of Marketing and Communications, the Graduate Student Association, and the Academic Commons’ Office for Professional Writing, Publishing, and Communication (OPWPC). Sessions are virtual and open to all. Attend and participate to earn a Jefferson Science Communication Certificate.

Attendance will grant you one point toward the Science Communication Certificate. Completing the writing test or answering the interview questions will grant you three additional points. Submitting an assignment late will grant you two points instead of three. Please see attached flyers for this Career Panel and the Science Communications Series Certificate program.

Science Advocacy
Thursday, May 5
12:30 – 1:30 p.m.
Register here

Learn strategies to get public and government support for your science or your cause. Hear from Kristin Anderson, PhD, and Ed Bilsky, PhD, as they discuss science advocacy. Check out this flyer to learn more.

Presentation Skills: Body Language Workshop
Monday, May 9
12 – 1 p.m.
Register here

Discover the nuances of what body language communicates in presentations, learn the importance of body language across cultures, and explore how to use your non-verbal skills to communicate research more effectively. Check out this flyer to learn more and sign up.

3-Minute Thesis Competition

Train to tell your science story in three minutes. Present your talk or attend and cheer on competing PhD candidates.

Questions? Contact Learn more about the Science Outreach & Communication Initiative.

Register now for the Jefferson Humanities forum “Origins” with Dr. Robin Wall Kimmerer on Monday, February 28

Join Jefferson Humanities and the Jefferson College of Life Sciences on Monday, February 28, at 5:30pm for a virtual forum with Dr. Robin Kimmerer.

Robin Wall Kimmerer is a mother, scientist, decorated professor, and enrolled member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation. She is the author of Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants, which has earned Kimmerer wide acclaim. Her first book, Gathering Moss: A Natural and Cultural History of Mosses, was awarded the John Burroughs Medal for outstanding nature writing, and her other work has appeared in Orion, Whole Terrain, and numerous scientific journals. She tours widely and has been featured on NPR’s On Being with Krista Tippett and in 2015 addressed the general assembly of the United Nations on the topic of “Healing Our Relationship with Nature.” Kimmerer lives in Syracuse, New York, where she is a SUNY Distinguished Teaching Professor of Environmental Biology, and the founder and director of the Center for Native Peoples and the Environment, whose mission is to create programs which draw on the wisdom of both indigenous and scientific knowledge for our shared goals of sustainability.

Forum Scholar: Anne Bower, PhD, Professor of Biology, College of Life Sciences, Thomas Jefferson University.

RSVP: Register for the virtual event

Read the book: Access the eBook version of Braiding Sweetgrass via the TJU Libraries

Download the digital flyer to learn more.

New Journal (NEJM Evidence) & Upcoming Workshop on Evidence Synthesis

Thomas Jefferson University Libraries just added a new journal to our collection – NEJM Evidence. The journal, published by the New England Journal of Medicine, is an online-only, peer-reviewed general medical journal. NEJM Evidence, published monthly, will highlight original research and new ideas in clinical trial design and clinical decision-making.

And you can gain skills to find more evidence synthesis publications at our workshop, “Evidence Synthesis for Evidence-Based Teaching,” this March. Greg Laynor, Senior Librarian at Scott Memorial Library, will lead the virtual workshop on Friday, March 11, where he’ll share tips to find evidence synthesis publications about teaching practices. The workshop will also cover options for publishing evidence synthesis projects on education topics, such as the Best Evidence Medical Education (BEME) Collaboration.

In the meantime, check out NEJM Evidence. The journal publishes:

  • Original research, clinical trials, and other clinically grounded work (e.g., epidemiology studies, first-in-human trials, meta-analyses) that validate or challenge prior clinical findings
  • Standard reviews, systematic reviews, and other review types that contextualize research findings to accelerate clinical adoption of new evidence
  • Case studies and reviews of clinical trial methodology that enhance understanding of trial strengths and weaknesses
  • Curbside consult series that addresses common patient care issues

Learn more about NEJM Evidence and sign up for the Evidence Synthesis for Evidence-Based Teaching workshop in March.

JDC Quarterly Report October – December 2021: CREATE Day Presentations, Dissertations, Story Slam, Population Health Capstones, and More

Happy New Year and welcome to 2022! The Jefferson Digital Commons (JDC) ended the final quarter with 326 new items and 193,650 downloads. Check out the Quarterly Report to read about the latest additions to the repository and see what people are saying about the JDC.

In 2021, the JDC reported:

  • 21,218 video and audio streams
  • 15,311 institutions accessed content
  • 1,564 works posted
  • 218 countries visited the site

This quarterly report includes:

  • Articles
  • Conferences and Symposia
  • CREATE Day Presentations
  • Dissertations
  • Faculty Development Programs
  • Grand Rounds and Lectures
  • JCPH Capstone Presentations
  • Jefferson Health Conference for Advancing Care Excellence
  • Journals and Newsletters
  • Lesson Plans
  • Models
  • Posters
  • Reports
  • Story Slam
  • Student Projects
  • What People are Saying About the Jefferson Digital Commons

Check out the Quarterly Report now to learn more.

SPRING 2022 WORKSHOPS: Time management, measuring research impact, the elevator pitch, and more

Jump into 2022 by prioritizing your professional goals with the Academic Commons! Workshops will focus on things like:

  • updating course materials to be inclusive and accessible to students
  • improving your time management skills to be most productive
  • measuring the impact of your research
  • utilizing educational technologies to make teaching online effective

We’ll cover classroom tools like VoiceThread and Respondus, Open Educational Resources (OER), persuasive writing, and more. Browse the sessions below or download our flyer to learn more.

Writing Strategies to Get People to Listen and Understand
Wednesday, March 30, 12-1pm

Have you ever been told that your writing is hard to understand? We’ll review simple writing concepts you can use to make your sentences clearer, livelier, and more concise.

The Elevator Pitch
Wednesday, April 13, 1-2pm

What would you say if you had a minute or two to make a case with a decision-maker? What kinds of words might make a difference in getting through to them? We’ll analyze the pitch and practice making one using a simple method and key words.

Winnie-The-Pooh will be just one of many new works entering the Public Domain starting January 1st, 2022

While we all celebrate January 1st as the start of a new year full of new possibilities, there is another reason that fans of open access information in the United States commemorate every January 1st. This is because January 1st is when new works enter the public domain for the year. Despite what it might sound like, the public domain is not a place. Instead, according to the U.S. government copyright office, works that are in the public domain are “no longer under copyright protection” and “may be used freely without the permission of the former copyright owner.” Currently, U.S. copyright law states that materials published between 1923-1977 remain under copyright for 95 years from their publication date. What this means for Winnie-The-Pooh is that now creators will be able to take the beloved characters from that children’s story and write their own stories or create their own media without having to get permission from a copyright holder.

Interested in learning more about what works will be entering the public domain this year? The Public Domain Review website has put together a new feature where they showcase a work set to enter the public domain each day throughout December. Other well-known works highlighted on their website include Ernest Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises and books by authors such as D. H. Lawrence, Baroness Orczy, Franz Kafka, William Faulkner, and Agatha Christie.

This year there is also something special happening with music and sound recordings. All recordings published in the U.S. before 1923 will enter the public domain in January. These works were not available before now because sound recordings before the 1970s were protected by state laws, which held that the words were copyrighted indefinitely. The Music Modernization Act of 2018 made it possible for these works to enter the public domain. Check out these sound recordings on the Library of Congress’s Citizen DJ website, and use them without permission however you like starting on January 1st.

To learn more about copyright and fair use issues, please visit the Thomas Jefferson University Libraries copyright guide.