Assume a textbook T having a high cost. And T is not available anywhere for free.

Suppose I personally brought T and read and understood completely.

Am I allowed to teach using it in India? Teaching here refers to either classroom teaching, being a faculty or commercial teaching, acknowledging source.

  • 1
    Your question is unclear. What do you mean by "teach it"? You don't teach books, you teach knowledge and skills.
    – Roland
    Feb 18 '20 at 11:39
  • @Roland I mean using the strategies, understood content, questions, etc., from the textbook...
    – hanugm
    Feb 18 '20 at 11:42
  • This is purely a legal question and I'd tend to consider it off-topic for this site. The answer would depend on if there is a "fair use" concept in India, how exactly it is interpreted by Indian courts and, among other specific factors, to which extend you are reproducing the book's content during your teaching.
    – Roland
    Feb 18 '20 at 11:48
  • 2
    Agree with @roland “teach it” is unclear, even after your clarification. The main question is, will you be sharing any verbatim content from the book (photocopies, scanned PDFs of actual book content, or homework problems from the books you’ve re-typeset into your own notes but that are still in the book authors’ words, etc) with your students? If you do you are potentially infringing copyright. If not, you are just using the knowledge you acquired from the book, which (at least generically, barring very specific exceptions) does not enjoy intellectual property protection.
    – Dan Romik
    Feb 18 '20 at 18:12

I can't speak to what would be allowed or not in India, but consider this: is it good for the students if the textbook is really expensive?

Are the students supposed to read the textbook themselves? If it's really expensive then you can get the following problems:

  • They don't use the book because they can't afford it.
  • They use a pirated version of the book.
  • They spend a lot of money on a book and get into financial difficulty.
  • Only rich students can take your class.
  • They complain about the lecturer who insists on using an expensive textbook.
  • They use a different textbook that they can afford, and you have to deal with the differences that will surely arise.

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