Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

OER (Open Education Resources): Films and Music Resources

Definition

Not all of these resources are OER, many of them are public domain or from the library.  Library resources can be used in your classes without worrying about copyright but they are Zero Textbook Cost (ZTC), not OER.

Showing Movies in Class and on Campus

There are many sources for streaming video content available that students can access on their own. For instance, subscription services Netflix and Hulu offer thousands of documentaries, mainstream film titles, and television programs on a streaming basis for an affordable monthly fee that most students likely already pay. Additionally, sites like Amazon and iTunes offer inexpensive streaming video rental. Instructors are encouraged to investigate availability of videos through these subscription services that they wish students to view and require students, as part of the class, to have one of these low-cost monthly services or to rent movies on their own time. . There are also many online sources for free and legal streaming content:

Students must access these on their own, you may not show them asychronously.

Thanks to George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida. Resources for Free and Legal Streaming Video. CC BY NC SA

Searching for Specific types of films

You may search or browse for films by title or genre. On some pages, you may filter by MPAA ratings, copyright year, and genre.

Searching for specific criteria

On the homepage, use the search bar at the top to search for keywords in the title or description.

Feature Films for Education homepage header with search box highlighted in yellow

Use the Advanced Search page to search for keywords and/or search by Producer, Copyright Year, Genre, or Language (there are a few Spanish-language films and several with Spanish subtitles). Other advanced search features listed don't actually provide additional functionality.

FFE Advanced Search page showing multiple keyword search boxes and several filters including Producers, Copyright Date, and Genre

 

Public Viewing Rights OR Service Agreement

Copyright determines what may and may not be used in the classroom.  Films may be shown synchronously in a closed classroom (or behind the portal), if you only use what is pedagogically necessary.  When you download a link to your Canvas shell, you are making a copy.  This breaks copyright law.

Service Agreements are usually more restrictive because those services either own their own original content (Amazon or Netflix) or have paid a licensing fee to the copyright owner to show that film.  When you download a film for a non-personal use, you are breaking the service agreement.  While the worse thing that will probably happen to you is your service will be cancelled, do you want to chance it.

FBI Anti- Piracy Warning

Image credit: The Hollywood Reporter

While streaming doesn't violate U.S. copyright law, downloading very explicitly does. You're making a copy of the work every time you download something — a clear violation if it's done without the copyright holder's permission. “The copyright owner has the exclusive right to make copies.Oct 14, 2019 

"When Streaming is Illegal: Here is What You Need to Know About Pirated Copies."  All Connect Full-text Article