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Library - Plagiarism and Copyright: Copyright

Information in this LibGuide is organised to support and guide students in their academic activities.

What is copyright?

Copyright is a bundle of exclusive rights, given to authors/creators (known as rights owners) in order to control certain activities relating to the use and dissemination of their original works, whether they are :

  • books
  • articles
  • music
  • artworks
  • computer programs
  • films
  • sound recordings


The UJ Plagiarism Policy states that:

“…. Copyright is the specific intellectual property right, which an author acquires in accordance with the Copyright Act, No. 98 of 1978 in respect of a protected work.


Copyright infringement includes the infringement of the economic rights of the right holder and the moral rights of the author….”

Copyright Limitations

Information on this page is also applicable at the University of Johannesburg

During the course of your studies, you may sometimes want to copy material, e.g. journal articles, web pages, maps etc. You need to be aware that this material will almost certainly be protected by copyright, which will limit the amount you can copy.


  • single extract or several extracts from a book as long as the total copied is not more than 10% of the whole work, OR
  • one chapter from a book, OR
  • one article from a journal or newspaper issue, OR
  • one paper from a set of conference proceedings, OR
  • one single case from a volume of law reports, OR
  • Poems, short stories and other short literary works may be copied so long as they are not more than ten pages long.    
  • You may select an area of a map not greater than A4 in size and copy it up to four times for private study or research for a non-commercial purpose. 

Copyright user manual

This document has been designed by the copyright office to guide students and staff of the University of Johannesburg

Subject Guide

Profile Photo
Dawie Jacobs
University of Johannesburg Library
Auckland Park Campus
+27 11 559 3454

copyright statements : example

Support CC

Permission for copyright


Senior Copyright Officer

Thapelo Mashishi

011 559-2182