The Higher Education Opportunity Act (HEOA) is a reauthorization of the Higher Education Act that includes provisions designed to curtail activities related to the unauthorized sharing of copyrighted materials. Among those provisions are the requirements that higher education institutions:
- Develop plans to “effectively combat” the unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials on their campus.
- Make an annual disclosure to students informing them of the civil and criminal penalties for unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials including the steps that the institution will take to detect and punish such activity on its network.
- Offer options and opportunities for legal access to copyrighted materials.
- Develop procedures for periodically reviewing the effectiveness of the plans to combat the unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials by users of the institution’s network using relevant assessment criteria.
Ithaca College has developed this Plan to comply with those provisions of the HEOA § 668.14. In order to understand the Plan, it is important to understand the context in which Ithaca College operates its campus network(s).
Network service to and within Ithaca College residence halls is provided by Apogee, Inc., 1 through an agreement with the College. Apogee, headquartered in Austin Texas is, according to their web site, “the leader in managing student networks for colleges and universities.” Apogee acts as the ISP of record for wired and wireless network services within residence halls as well as wireless services for students throughout the Ithaca College network. As such, Apogee responds to all DMCA complaints and has its own policies for dealing with copyright violations related to use of its network.
Ithaca College operates its own wired and wireless network used by faculty and staff on the central campus – within academic and administrative facilities. Throughout this plan, whenever it is appropriate, distinctions will be made between the Apogee network and the central campus network operated by Ithaca College.
The Plan to Effectively Combat Copyright Infringement
Network Service to Students provided by Apogee
Apogee uses bandwidth shaping on its network in order to guarantee each student a certain maximum amount of Internet connectivity that is governed by the individual agreement between each student and Apogee, and to ensure that no individual student uses more then his or her fair share of Internet bandwidth. As ISP of record, Apogee responds to all DMCA complaints related to student use of its network.
Central Campus Network Operated by Ithaca College
On its central campus network, Ithaca College uses bandwidth shaping technology provided by Packeteer2 to limit the amount of peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing protocol traversing the connection to the Internet. The College does not block P2P traffic as not all such traffic is illegal; there are legitimate uses of P2P file protocols that are consistent with the Ithaca College mission.
The Ithaca College All College Computer and Network Use Policy - Paragraph 4, Respect intellectual property - specifically prohibits the use of peer-to-peer applications for sharing copyrighted materials without permission of the copyright holder.
The College also has a robust process for responding to complaints from copyright holders under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). More information can be found at https://www.ithaca.edu/contact/copyright.php.
Annual Disclosure to Students
Students living in campus residence halls or using the campus wireless network are required to execute an agreement with Apogee in order to have access to Internet services (see Exhibit A). This agreement must be executed at least annually, sometimes each semester. Section 6.d. of the agreement describes the liabilities under law for copyright infringement and the action(s) that Apogee can take in the event of infringement or any other violation of the agreement.
Ithaca College Division of Student Affairs and Campus Life distributes information to all students annually about the Student Handbook. The handbook is a Web site that includes specific references to the Computer and Network Use Policy referenced above, as well as a link to the Student Conduct Code, which describes the actions taken whenever a College policy is violated by a student.
Student Affairs and Campus Life also publishes a Web site on Digital Citizenship that includes a section on Your Music and Movies explaining copyright law and the dangers of Peer to Peer file sharing.
Legal Access To Copyrighted Materials
The Student Affairs and Campus Life Web site on Digital Citizenship includes information about where to obtain music and movies legally.
Periodic Review of Effectiveness
Beginning in academic year 2012-2013 and periodically thereafter, Ithaca College will poll the student community to assess the effectiveness of our outreach concerning unauthorized sharing of copyrighted materials via P2P technologies and the extent to which the community is availing itself of opportunities for legal downloading. We will also assess the extent to which our technological measures have diminished the amount of P2P traffic traversing our network.