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Use & Permissions

The Southern Oral History Program (SOHP) welcomes non-commercial use and access that qualifies as fair use to all unrestricted interview materials in the collection. The researcher must cite and give proper credit to the SOHP. The SOHP requests that the researcher informs the SOHP as to how and where they are using the material using this web form. The preferred citation is as follows:

  • Interview with [interviewee name] by [interviewer name], [interview date] [interview number], in the Southern Oral History Program Collection #4007, Southern Historical Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
  • Example: Interview with Katharine DuPre Lumpkin by Jacquelyn Hall, 4 August 1974 (G-0034), in the Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007), Southern Historical Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

The SOHP works to uphold the obligations and legal commitments made to interviewees, interviewers, and donors of material. Some interviews have restrictions imposed by the interviewee, interviewer, or donor; restricted interviews are clearly marked. In such cases, it is the researcher’s responsibility to uphold the restriction appropriately and completely. Researchers may, for example, be required to obtain written permission from the interviewee or interviewer to quote from the interview. Contact the SOHP with any questions about restrictions by email here.

For commercial use of any sort, including reproduction (including quotation, publication, and broadcast in any medium), distribution, derivative works, public performance, and public display that goes beyond fair use, the researcher must obtain written permission from the SOHP by using this web form. Permission will comply with any agreements made with the interviewee, interviewer, or donor of materials. This permission is valid only insofar as the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, as owner or custodian of the material, has any rights in the matter. This permission does not remove the responsibility of the author, editor, publisher, or broadcaster to guard against infringement of any rights, including copyright that may be held by others. The researcher must cite and give proper credit to the SOHP (see preferred citation above). The SOHP requests that the researcher informs the SOHP as to how and where they are using the material using this web form. The SOHP reserves the right to refuse the right for commercial use.

For most unrestricted interviews, copyright has been assigned to the University of North Carolina. When the copyright has not been assigned to the University of North Carolina, copyright is retained by the interviewers/interviewees, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.

For more information about fair use, see our guidelines here.

Oral history materials may contain sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations, the North Carolina Public Records Act (N.C.G.S. Section 132 1 et seq.), and Article 7 of the North Carolina State Personnel Act (Privacy of State Employee Personnel Records, N.C.G.S. Section 126-22 et seq.). Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals without the consent of those individuals may have legal ramifications (e.g., a cause of action under common law for invasion of privacy may arise if facts concerning an individual’s private life are published that would be deemed highly offensive to a reasonable person) for which the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill assumes no responsibility.

If an interview has been transcribed, researchers should quote from the transcript. If no transcript is available, reference to material in the interview should be taken from the audio recording.

For preservation purposes, use of audiotapes or videotapes may require production of listening or viewing copies. If a researcher requires the creation of a listening or viewing copy, the researcher will be responsible for the cost. For more details about audio/visual reproduction policies at UNC, see Audio Recordings and Moving Images Reproduction Services.