Answered By: Desk Reference
Last Updated: Aug 28, 2020

Fair dealing has been called a users’ right that provides a counter balance to creators' and owners’ rights.  The purpose of copyright law can be said to advance knowledge and to foster research by encouraging the publication of original works.  The law achieves this partly by providing an incentive for the creation of new works through establishing exclusive rights which may in turn be assigned or licensed to another party.  Fair dealing is both a user right and an exception to infringement (other more specific exceptions are enumerated within the Copyright Act). Fair dealing allows the use of a work, without the owner's permission, for certain purposes and ensures a balance by preventing research from becoming too costly or cumbersome to be conducted effectively, thus constraining the production of new work and working against the intended purpose of copyright law. The Supreme Court has suggested that Fair Dealing requires an analysis of six factors in the use of a work: purpose, character, amount, alternatives, nature, and effect.

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