Digital Copyright Safeguards Program

Shawnee State University is committed to educating its students, faculty and staff on the importance of understanding its role as an institution of higher education and the regulations it must adhere to as defined within the Higher Education Opportunity Act (HEOA). Combating the unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials by users of the SSU network, without interfering with the intended purpose of educational and research use of the network, is the overall goal of this program.

ITS understands its role in accepting the responsibility to implement the latest technologies that deter copyright infringement and continues to monitor traffic on the network for unauthorized content, and respond to any notice from an authority charged to protect copyrighted material as reported under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA).

Technology Safeguards to Protect SSU

Shawnee State University uses BlueCoat PacketShaper and Procera Networks packet shaping technology devices to manage bandwidth utilization on campus. The technical policy in place enforces limits that block the ability for unauthorized peer to peer network functions on campus. In addition, by default all inbound ports to client computers on campus are blocked at the Internet firewall. This prevents computers from acting as servers or super nodes in peer to peer networks.

All students are given the opportunity to attend a session with ITS at orientation, on current technology issues at the start of each school year. This session addresses copyright infringement, peer to peer file sharing and other common policy violations that can occur through the use of technology.

ITS provides a number of publications in compliance with federal and state regulations, in packets distributed to each housing student upon move-in, and made readily available to all students at the Help Desk. Distributed materials include a notification section on federal copyright law and the implications of copyright infringement utilizing campus technology resources.

Procedures in Place

Upon receiving notification of copyright infringement through a reported notice from a recognized authority, Information Technology Services has a set of procedures for enforcement. The infringing user is identified and contacted. In cooperation with the Office of Student Affairs, first time offenders meet with ITS personnel to ensure they understand the violation, and are given 24 hours to resolve the issue to complete satisfaction of the authority. ITS provides a timely response back to the authority noting compliance as required.

On second offense or due to an unwillingness to comply after the first offense, offenders are disconnected from the network and sent a notification that network connectivity will not be restored until the individual meets with the Dean of Students. The user is afforded the opportunity to meet in person to discuss the notice and action taken. Connectivity will not be restored until a written authorization is received by Information Technology via an email to, from the Dean of students, to restore connectivity. These disciplinary procedures are defined in the SSU student handbook.

Shawnee State University Notice on Copyright Infringement

Software and other materials that are protected by copyright, patent, trade secret, or another form of legal protection ("Protected Materials") may not be copied, altered, transmitted, or stored using SSU-owned or operated technology systems, except as permitted by law or by the contract, license agreement, or express written consent of the owner of the Protected Materials. The use of software on a local area network or on multiple computers must be in accordance with the software license agreement.

Education and Awareness

It is SSU’s shared responsibility to protect the institution from copyright infringement. Overall campus awareness, technology changes and enforcing policy are all the deterrents that comprise the safeguards in place to protect students, faculty and staff. Each of us needs to be aware of the laws in effect to combat unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials, and the steps we need to take to ensure that we protect individuals from potential civil and criminal liabilities, and disciplinary action that can be assessed upon those who violate federal copyright laws.

The Office of the General Counsel is available to provide clarification to any law in effect as it relates to HEOA and the individual responsibilities we assume as a campus community. ITS will meet to review the effectiveness of the Copyright Safeguard Program on a periodic basis with the General Counsel, to stay abreast of changes in the law, and to discuss changes required in SSU’s network usage Policy 5.30, to adhere to any such changes and additional responsibilities.