The use of college-supported AV equipment on campus is limited to academic/classroom functions where the AV content is an integral part of the curriculum.
Section 110.1 of US Copyright Law states:
Notwithstanding the provisions of section 106, the following are not infringements of copyright: "Performance or display of a work by instructors or pupils in the course of face-to-face teaching activities of a nonprofit educational institution, in a classroom or similar place devoted to instruction, unless, in the case of a motion picture or other audiovisual work, the performance, or the display of individual images, is given by means of a copy that was not lawfully made under this title, and that the person responsible for the performance knew or had reason to believe was not lawfully made."
The following is an excerpt from the New Yorker Films Public Performance Rights FAQ.
1. What are public performance rights?
Public performance rights are the legal rights held by distributors or producers over the showing of a film outside of one's home. The rights-holder can grant others the temporary right to show the film by selling them or granting them a public performance license.
2. When do I need to obtain a public performance license?
Anytime a film is shown outside a person's personal home, the screening is considered "public". It does not matter if admission is charged or if the entity screening the film is a non-profit organization, school or library. If the film is being shown outside the home, it is considered "public."
3. What about the "teaching exemption"?
The copyright act allows films to be screened in face-to-face teaching situations, defined by specific criteria. To be eligible for the teaching exemption, the screening is limited to students who are enrolled in a class in which the film is a part of systematic mediated instructional activities, the instructor is present, and the screening is an integral part of the classroom session. Playing films for the department, for honors students, or as a "film series" or lecture series does not qualify for the teaching exemption, but requires a public performance license.
4. I bought a tape or DVD from the distributor for my school or library. Does it include public performance rights?
Most tapes are sold without public performance rights, but some tapes or DVDs are sold with limited public performance rights. They may enable you to play the tape for its lifetime in public screenings on your campus. However, you may not copy the tape or lend the tape to other institutions or organizations, or charge admission for the screenings you hold with that tape. These rules may vary, so check carefully with the distributor when purchasing.