Fort Hays State University > About FHSU > Division of Student Affairs > Judicial Affairs > Illegal Downloading
Ethical Use of Computing Resources PolicyIntroductionFort Hays State University (FHSU) provides computing resources and worldwide network access to its faculty, staff, and students for legitimate administrative, educational, and research efforts. As a member of the FHSU electronic community it is your responsibility to use computing resources ethically and responsibly. Members of the FHSU electronic community are expected to exercise reasonable care in the utilization of FHSU information systems or their components.
PrivacyThere are limitations on the amount of privacy that can be expected for individuals utilizing computer resources. Complaints or exceptional circumstances may result in investigation. The Electronic Communications Act of 1986 provides no protection for employees using company online systems. Users should exercise extreme caution in using e-mail to communicate confidential or sensitive matters, and should not assume that e-mail is private and confidential. It is especially important that users are careful to send messages only to the intended recipient(s). Particular care should be taken when using the "reply" command during e-mail correspondence. Because of the contents of such an e-mail are subject to laws governing public records, users will need to exercise judgment in sending content that may be deemed confidential. Furthermore, e-mail transmissions may not be secure, and contents that are expected to remain confidential should not be communicated via e-mail. Common examples of confidential contents include: student grades, personnel records, individual donor gift records, and data subject to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA), Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) regulations, and the Gramm Leach Bliley Act (GLBA).
ResponsibilitiesIn making appropriate use of the FHSU computing resources, users must accept the responsibility for their behavior and:
Individuals Will Not...In making appropriate use of computing resources, individuals should avoid:
Use of E-mail for FHSU BusinessThe official Fort Hays State University E-mail Account is the only electronic mail platform for communicating university business. Official e-mail communications are intended only to meet the academic and administrative needs of the campus community. All electronic notifications from the university are transmitted through this e-mail account and are not forwarded to other non-FHSU e-mail accounts. Users are expected to read, and shall be presumed to have received and read, all Fort Hays State University e-mail messages sent to their Official Fort Hays State University e-mail accounts. The university expects that such communications will be received and read in a timely fashion.
Assignment of Student E-mailOfficial university e-mail accounts are available for all enrolled students. The addresses are all of the form [Name]@mail.fhsu.edu. These accounts must be activated before the university can correspond with its students using the official e-mail accounts. An account website available through the TigerTracks Portal has been designed for this purpose. Students' official e-mail addresses will be included in directory information. As with other directory information, any student may request that access to his or her official e-mail address be restricted.
Expectations about Student use of E-mailStudents are expected to check their e-mail on a frequent and consistent basis in order to stay current with university-related communications. Students have the responsibility to recognize that certain communications may be time critical. Failure to check e-mail, error in forwarding mail, or e-mail returned to the university with "Mailbox Full" or "User Unknown" are not acceptable excuses for missing Official university communications via e-mail.
Educational Uses of E-mailFaculty will determine ow electronic forms of communication such as electronic mail will be used in their classes, and will specify their requirements in the course syllabus. This will ensure that all students will be able to comply with e-mail-based course requirements specified by faculty. Faculty can therefore make the assumption that students' official FHSU accounts are being accessed.
Redirecting of E-mailIf a student wishes to have e-mail redirected from their official FHSU address to another e-mail address such as @aol.com, @hotmail.com, or an address on a departmental server, they may do so, but at their own risk. The university will not be responsible for the handling of e-mail by outside vendors or by departmental servers. Having e-mail redirected does not absolve a student from the responsibilities associated with official communication sent to his or her FHSU account.
Authentication for Confidential InformationIt is a violation of university policies for any user of official e-mail addresses to impersonate a university office, faculty/staff member, or student. To minimize this risk, some confidential information may be made available only through the password-protected Tiger Tracks Portal. In these cases, students will receive e-mail correspondence directing them to the appropriate Tiger Tracks Portal link, where they can access the confidential information only by supplying their student ID and personal identification number (PIN). The confidential information will not be available in the e-mail message.
Consequence of MisuseIndividuals who misuse FHSU computing resources will be held accountable for their conduct, which may include discipline under the Student Code of Conduct or Faculty Handbook.
Academic FreedomNo provision of this policy shall be construed so as to impose any limit to the academic freedom of faculty in their instructional, research, or service activities.
Illegal DownloadingSome people seem to believe that if you can get something for free, it must be all right. However, this is not the case with Internet piracy. Downloading copyrighted materials, such as music, videos, games, graphics, and information has become one of the most controversial issues on the Internet. Fort Hays State University does not permit such types of illegal downloads. Approximately 100 violations occurred at FHSU during the Fall 2007 semester. Most violations were due to illegal downloads of music, and some were movies. When notified of these copyright infringements, the university must take action in order to comply with the federal law. First, the source’s Internet access is revoked. Second, the student is required to meet with the Assistant Vice President of Student Affairs to learn about the actions that must be taken to resolve the situation and have his or her Internet access restored.
Here is a list of actions YOU can take to avoid violating copyright law and FHSU acceptable use policies:
See the following references for more information:FHSU Acceptable Use of Computing Resources Policyhttp://www.fhsu.edu/ctc/computer policies
Recording Industry Association of Americahttp://www.riaa.com/
Entertainment Software Associationhttp://www.theesa.com/
The Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998: http://www.copyright.gov/legislation/dmca.pdf
Copyright Education Presentation, by the Picture Archive Council of America:http://www.pacaoffice.org/copyrightPresentation.shtml