Is there a way to legally share a DVD on one computer with multiple users on the network?

Joseph V October 27, 2013
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In our school – we have limited resources and budget (no surprise for most teachers : )

We have purchased an educational DVD we’d like to use in multiple classes, without having to physically hand the DVD between teachers.

Is there a way we can leave the DVD loaded on one machine, so that it can only be viewed by a single user on the network at a time – without breaking any copyright or other laws ?

For example, each teacher in several different classrooms would be given a scheduled time to view the DVD, and if an ‘unscheduled’ teacher tries to access the DVD while another is using it, they would be unable.

Thanks in advance,

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  1. Jan F
    October 28, 2013 at 9:55 pm

    One would have to look at the local laws ~ anyway, there are exemptions to the copyright law in certain situations also related to educational uses.

    Maybe this link helps:

  2. James B
    October 28, 2013 at 8:54 am

    Unless you have a school wide AV distribution system (used for example for a school news show, but there's a central matrix where TV output can be enabled/disabled per classroom), then no this isn't possible. Handing the DVD around is the only (legal) way to do this.

  3. Nala D
    October 28, 2013 at 7:49 am

    I think that's okay. We used to do that in school back then, too! For educational purposes only, of course. Since you bought the DVD legally, I think it's fine as long as you guys are not selling or redistributing it, or making others pay before they watch it, especially the students! I think it's best if you copy the DVD and put in a folder with a password, and change it once in a while whenever necessary. Also, make sure to check the share settings so not everyone can access it!