Graduation Year


Document Type

Honors Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


Management, Marketing, and Organizational Communication

Program or Major


Faculty Advisor

Michael T. Matraia

Second Faculty Advisor

Deborah O'Malley


In this thesis, I have identified weaknesses to the fair use concept in Section 107 in the Copyright Act of 1976. In particular, it is difficult to identify what fair use is in copyright cases because of the ambiguity of the four factors and how they are applied. As a result, inconsistent rulings by judges occur. Therefore, the solution that I propose is to revise the statute to put an appropriate emphasis on the application of all four factors in a cohesive way, specifically the second factor, because the way in which it is viewed now gives it too narrow of a focus, leading to inconsistency in rulings. In other words, there is a lack of understanding on how to apply this factor to each case and how to identify a threshold for transformativeness in fair use. To assist in better understanding what it means for a more consistent ruling on fair use in various cases, the statute should include a mechanism similar to location models to identify where the fair use threshold is and what consequences this threshold will have on the market.