Plan for Combating the Unauthorized Distribution of Copyrighted Materials


1. Handling unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials

Unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials is a violation of Albright’s Acceptable Use of Technology Resources Policy. Student violations of this policy will be referred to the Office of Community Standards. Employee violations will be referred to the appropriate divisional vice president. The Information Technology Services department will maintain a database of all copyright violation notices, and in the case of repeat offenders, further policy enforcements and sanctions are applicable, as outlined in the Acceptable Use policy.

Albright College uses a BlueCoat PacketShaper device to manage bandwidth utilization and to greatly limit the ability of peer to peer file sharing on our campus residential network. Additionally, by default, all inbound ports to client computers on our residential network are blocked at the Internet firewall. This prevents computers from acting as servers or super nodes in peer to peer networks.

2. Reviewing the effectiveness of this plan

The effectiveness of this plan will be reviewed annually by the Director, Core Technologies & Client Services and the CTO, by reviewing the number of copyright and peer to peer file sharing takedown notices for the current versus prior years according to ITS database records. A summary of the review will be provided to the Dean of Students and other vice presidents, as appropriate. Any significant increase in notices over the prior period would warrant additional educational and/or policy enforcement measures, in consultation with senior management.

3. Education and Annual Student Notices

Each year, policies and laws relating to unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials will be explained and reviewed with incoming students during the IT Services portion of new student orientation.

The College will provide an annual notice of policies and laws relating to unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials to all students pursuant to the statutory requirements of the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008. The annual notice shall:

  • Inform students that unauthorized distribution of copyrighted material, including peer-to-peer file sharing may subject a student to civil and criminal liabilities.
  • Include a summary of penalties for violation of Federal copyright laws.
  • Describe institutional policies with respect to unauthorized peer-to-peer file sharing.
  • List or provide a link to legal alternatives to unauthorized distribution of copyrighted material.
  • Provide appropriate College contact information for questions or guidance.

4. Legal Alternatives to Unauthorized Distribution of Copyrighted Material

EDUCAUSE maintains a comprehensive list of legal sources of online content, as provided here.

For a printable copy of this procedure, click here.