Legal Sources of Online Content

The Higher Education Opportunity Act requires all colleges and universities to offer legal alternatives to unauthorized downloading. The bullets below include legitimate online services that are approved by the AAP, MPAA, and RIAA. No endorsement or evaluation is intended. To suggest additions or provide other input, contact [email protected].

Note: Some of the sites listed provide some or all content at no charge; they are funded by advertising or represent artists who want their material distributed for free, or for other reasons. Just because content is free doesn't mean it's illegal. On the other hand, you may find websites offering to sell content which are not on the list below. Just because content is not free doesn't mean it's legal.

  • Books
    NOTE: The Association of American Publishers (AAP) page to which this section refers is no longer active. EDUCAUSE has requested that AAP provide a link to a replacement page and will post one as soon as it is available
  • Movies and TV Shows
    The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) points to Watch It Legally, which identifies legal online sources for watching movies and TV shows.
  • Music
    The Recording Industry Association of American (RIAA), together with NARM, the music business association, maintains the Why Music Matters website that provides a current list of the licensed music services in the United States.


Legal Alternatives for Downloading


Updated September 2021