3.36 / Copyright

  1. Purpose

    To state University policy relative to the use of copyrighted materials by faculty and staff of the University.

  2. Preamble

    The federal copyright law (Title 17, United States Code, Section 101, et seq.) protects creative works. It is appropriate, and required, that all members of the Wichita State University community, including faculty, staff, students and volunteers respect the proprietary rights of owners of copyrights and refrain from actions that constitute an infringement of copyright or other proprietary rights.

  3. Policy

    1. All faculty and staff are expected to comply with the federal copyright law and obtain permission for use unless the use can fairly and reasonably be interpreted as "fair use." Faculty, staff and employees are expected to review this policy and request further information and resources as needed that may be utilized for purposes of determining compliance with the federal copyright law.

    2. Copyright Guidelines have been prepared by the General Counsel's Office to assist members of the WSU community in complying with federal copyright law and to enable individuals to distinguish between permitted and prohibited uses of copyrighted materials. Members of the WSU community are expected to familiarize themselves with these guidelines and to fully comply with their requirements.

    3. Faculty members and staff who willfully disregard this Copyright Policy place themselves individually at risk of legal action. In such cases, the University may refuse to defend the employee named in any litigation and personal liability may be incurred by the employee.

    4. The University copy center located in Shocker Printing is available for copying services. All material to be copied by Shocker Printing must be reviewed by the faculty or staff member requesting copy services for copyright implications and the faculty or staff member must sign the Customer Statement of the Duplication of Copyrighted Written Works which is provided here and in the Shocker Printing office. Material may be presented for copying only where copying of the material can fairly and reasonably be considered fair use or where there is a University license to copy the material or where there is permission to copy, which shall be clearly set forth on the material to be copied.

    5. The General Counsel's Office is available for further guidance on specific questions regarding the application of the federal copyright law to specific factual scenarios.

    6. Possible Penalties for Violating WSU Copyright Policies or Copyright Law

      Wichita State University prohibits the unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials, including the use of peer-to-peer (P2P) networks. Members of the University community who use these networks to share copyrighted media files are subject to appropriate disciplinary action or sanction ranging from loss of access to the relevant University services or property (including computing privileges) to dismissal or removal from the University as determined by applicable employment or student disciplinary policies. In addition, unauthorized distribution of copyrighted material, including peer-to-peer file sharing, may subject a student or employee to serious civil and criminal liabilities (e.g., 17 U.S.C. 504, et seq.). Some of these liabilities include, but are not limited to the following:

      • Civil penalties of actual damages suffered by the copyright owner from the infringement; or
      • Civil penalties of statutory damages of up to $30,000.
      • Civil penalties for willful infringement of up to $150,000, and
      • Criminal penalties for willful criminal infringement from 1 to 5 years of imprisonment and fines of up to $250,000 per offense”
  4. Implementation

    This policy shall be included in the WSU Policies and Procedures Manual and shared with appropriate constituencies of the University.

    The General Counsel and the Vice President for Finance and Administration shall share responsibility for publication, dissemination and implementation of this University policy.

Effective Date

January 1, 2010