Departments and web page authors need to be aware of how intellectual property laws, regulations, and policies apply to the online environment. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act provides for a limitation of liability for infringement of copyright laws by users of computing resources at institutions of higher education.
The TEACH Act expands scope of works educators may perform and display in distance education setting.
The Higher Education Opportunity Act (HEOA) includes provisions that are designed to reduce the illegal uploading and downloading of copyrighted works through peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing.
When the college is notified that someone on the college network is distributing a copyrighted file without authorization, federal law requires us to take immediate action to prevent legal sanctions. Copyright infringement is an explicit violation of the College Code of Academic Ethics.
For students, the College Committee on Ethics and Conduct has jurisdiction over these cases and students are afforded due process rights under the college judicial system. A college employee who illegally shares files on an institutional computer is referred to his or her supervisor for appropriate action; if the behavior is repeated, the director of human resources is informed.
In addition to campus sanctions, a copyright holder may pursue legal action.
At A Glance:
- Copyright Genie helps one determine: is it covered by copyright?
- The Digital Copyright Slider is a quick guide to copyright questions.
- The Exceptions for Instructors eTool assists instructors in determining fair use of copyrighted works.
- The Fair Use Evaluator assists the user in better understanding how to determine the "fairness" of a use under the U.S. Copyright Code.
- The Section 108 Spinner helps one make determinations about whether reproductions by libraries, archives, and museums can be made for educational or preservation use without the permission of the copyright holder. Source: Michael Brewer & ALA Office for Information Technology Policy
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