Copyright Information & Downloading National Library of Medicine Data
NLM data are produced by a U.S. Government agency and include works of the United States Government that are not protected by U.S. copyright law but may be protected by non-US copyright law, as well as abstracts originating from publications that may be protected by U.S. or non-US copyright law.
The National Library of Medicine (NLM) assumes no responsibility or liability associated with use of copyrighted material, including transmitting, reproducing, redistributing, or making commercial use of the data. NLM does not provide legal advice regarding copyright, fair use, or other aspects of intellectual property rights.
NLM data licensees and others contemplating any type of transmission or reproduction of copyrighted material such as abstracts are advised to consult legal counsel. Those who search NLM databases may download for personal use and may provide others with a single copy of downloaded data.
Although a signed license agreement is not needed, users must ensure that all downloaded publicly accessible data stored in electronic form for over one year must be in compliance with the following provisions of the NLM license agreement:
- a. Users of these data must be provided a clear description of how the product/service was derived, indicating the currency and the source database.
- b. At least annually, the data in the downloaded product/service containing searchable MEDLINE-derived data must be corrected to incorporate the corrections NLM has made to these records during the year and in year-end maintenance. NLM data in the product/service must be carefully checked with that maintained on NLM's version of the database at the end of each calendar year and corrections made. This does not apply to products/services containing MEDLINE-derived data which itself is not searchable (e.g., MEDLINE-derived references and abstracts in the bibliography of an electronic textbook). The MEDLINE-derived data should be updated when a new edition of the product is released. In this case, users should be informed that the MEDLINE-derived data may change.
- c. Users are advised to consult legal counsel to ensure compliance with intellectual property laws. NLM cannot provide advice about copyright issues.
- d. Because NLM goes to considerable effort to assign MeSH terms, it prefers that these be retained as assigned by the indexers.
- e. The NLM record (or portion thereof) in the product/service must be labeled so as to identify NLM as the source, except for data derived from LocatorPlus.
- f. Trademark symbols must properly be used when referring to the NLM databases, system and products. A product/service using downloaded data must be named in a fashion that clearly distinguishes it from NLM-produced databases accessible at NLM.