Acceptable Use Policy

File Sharing

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) was passed by Congress in October of 1998. As described in the DMCA, the College of Saint Elizabeth is considered an Online Service Provider due to the fact the college is "an entity offering the transmission, routing, or providing of connections for digital online communications, between or among points specified by a user, of material of the user’s choosing, without modification to the content of the material as sent or received."

As a result, the College of Saint Elizabeth receives notifications of alleged copyright violations, including those resulting from peer-to-peer file sharing in the form of “pre-litigation letters,” which are investigated and distributed to the person who is allegedly in violation. While the College does not actively scan computers on the network for copyrighted material, the College utilizes tools on the campus network that might bring potential violations to the attention of the College administration.

The Higher Education Opportunity Act passed in August of 2008 requires higher education institutions as of July, 2010 to now combat unauthorized filing sharing, including issuing "a description of the institution's policies with respect to unauthorized peer-to-peer file sharing, including disciplinary actions that are taken against students who engage in unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials using the institution's information technology system."

At the College of Saint Elizabeth, the file sharing policy pertaining to unauthorized peer-to-peer file sharing applies equally to all campus network users including faculty, staff and students.

First offense

  • Users found violating the College’s file sharing policy will be automatically directed to a web page listing the alleged copyright violation, and regular Internet access, which affects e-mail access, will be disabled for a penalty period of at least 30 minutes.
  • The user must acknowledge understanding of the College’s policy relating to file sharing and agree to cease any further unauthorized file sharing activity before normal Internet access is restored.
  • If the user believes that no violation has occurred, they may contact the Network Operations department to have the incident reviewed.
  • A violation may be subject to the College's judiciary procedures.
  • Student Life or Human Resources may be notified of the incident for students and employees respectively.

Second offense

  • Users found violating the College’s file sharing policy a second time will automatically be directed to a web page listing the alleged copyright violation, and regular Internet access, which affects e-mail access, will be disabled.
  • The user must acknowledge understanding of the College’s policy relating to file sharing and agree to cease any further unauthorized file sharing activity.
  • Student Life or Human Resources will be notified of the incident for students and employees respectively, and the user may be subject to the College’s judiciary procedures.

Third offense

  • Repeated violations of the College’s file sharing policy will result in indefinite loss of Internet access, and the user will be subject to Student Life judiciary procedures or Human Resources disciplinary action for students and employees respectively.

The disclosure and a summary of penalties for violating the Copyright Law can be found here.