The C-SPAN Video Library records, indexes, and archives all C-SPAN programming for historical, educational, research, and archival uses. Every C-SPAN program aired since 1987, now totaling over 160,000 hours, is contained in the C-SPAN Archives and immediately accessible through the database and electronic archival systems developed and maintained by the C-SPAN Archives.
The Archives records all three C-SPAN networks seven days a week, twenty-four hours a day. Programs are extensively indexed making the database of C-SPAN programming an unparalleled chronological resource. Programs are indexed by subject, speaker names, titles, affiliations, sponsors, committees, categories, formats, policy groups, keywords, and location. The congressional sessions and committee hearings are indexed by person with full-text. The video collection can be searched through the online Video Library.
All C-SPAN programs since 1987 are digital and can be viewed online for free. Duplicate copies of programs that have aired since 1987 can be obtained and used for education, research, review or home viewing purposes. Proceeds from the sale of these programs help support the operation of the Archives. Some programs are not copyright cleared for sale.
The Archives began within the Purdue University School of Liberal Arts in 1987. In July 1998, C-SPAN assumed responsibility for the archival operations and the facilities were moved from the Purdue University campus to the Purdue Research Park in West Lafayette, Indiana. The indexing, abstracting, and cataloging of C-SPAN programs is the responsibility of the C-SPAN Archives staff.
Under C-SPAN's copyright policy a license is generally not required to post a recording of C-SPAN's video coverage of federal government events online for non-commercial purposes so long as C-SPAN is attributed as the source of the video. However, simultaneous streaming or retransmission of the C-SPAN networks' video coverage of any event not in the public domain, live or recorded, may not be posted under any circumstances without a license.
Keeping a C-SPAN logo on the screen during the non-commercial use constitutes sufficient attribution under this policy.
Federal government events include:
Video coverage of the debates originating from the chambers of the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate is in the public domain and as such, may be used without restriction or attribution.
C-SPAN does NOT permit unlicensed commercial use of any of its video programming (including coverage of federal government events) whether or not C-SPAN is attributed as the source of the video. Under this policy a license is required to use C-SPAN video for:
September 13, 2010