Illegal downloading for documentary research / fair use purposes

Hi there,

Will downloading material for documentary research purposes cost me a clearance position?

For context, I work in documentary film. During the research phase of a project, my job is to collect as much news and archival material as I can find on the subject.

In situations where ordering a screener is not an option, it is industry standard to download or screen capture the material so that it can be easily reviewed by the entire team. These illegally downloaded materials are labeled as screeners and do not make it into the final project.

I am now making a career transition, and am looking at clearance positions. Will this type of illegal downloading be a problem? If so, if I hand this task off to an intern does that absolve me of this issue?

So you are worried you are doing something illegal, yet you think it is ok to pass an activity that you think is illegal to someone else to absolve yourself?

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Zero integrity is a hefty accusation, but I appreciate the opportunity to clarify. To be clear, this is industry standard, I work with the approval of lawyers, and this generally falls under fair use. I assumed this wouldn’t be an issue, but I became concerned when I saw another post on here where a teacher asked about downloading youtube videos, which I thought would also fall under fair use, but some people said it would be an issue. The fact is if I don’t do it, it will get passed down to someone else. I can’t just quit my job at the moment, so I’m trying to figure out the best thing to do.

I did delete that comment……

Your initial post did not read the same as what you posted above.