Fair use can be defined as the principle that allows the copying of materials for noncommercial use. Copyright is a legal right bestowed upon the owner of any public work, that protects against unauthorized copying. The copyright law is something that entitles the owner of a work to make and reproduce copies of the work. In accordance with the copyright law is something called the first sale doctrine. It allows owners or purchasers of the copyrighted material to sell or rent out the work.

In journalism, these are of course very important issues. Copyrighting one's work is very important, and most all magazines, journalists, newspapers do this. But at the same time, no one can copyright news, because it is just news, so the copyright doctrine really only applies to journalism in opinion pieces, rather than the news.