The purpose of this statement is to set forth University policy with regard to institutional responsibilities as an online service provider and claims of copyright infringement.
Title II of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act ("DMCA") of 1998 limits the liability of online service providers, such as Wichita State University, for certain copyright infringement liability if various procedures are followed. This policy is intended to take advantage of the liability protections in the DMCA. By taking advantage of the DMCA, the University does not waive any other immunities provided to it or the state of Kansas by any applicable law or constitution.
Wichita State University respects the rights of holders of copyrights, their agents and representatives and will implement appropriate policies and procedures to support these rights without infringing upon the legal use, by individuals, of those materials. Legal use can include, but is not limited to, ownership, license or permission, and fair use under the U.S. Copyright Act. Employees and students need to be aware of the rights of copyright owners. Information on copyright law and these rights can be found in a number of places, but general information can be found by going to the following sites:
WSU Policies and Procedures Manual
Persons who are found to intentionally or repeatedly violate the copyright rights of others may be denied access to all University computing and networking facilities and resources. All instances of reported copyright violations will be reported to the appropriate University authority in accordance with the following policies for possible additional disciplinary actions:
The Designated Agent for complaints under the DMCA is:
Toney S. Flack
Chief Information Officer
Wichita State University
Wichita, KS 67260-0098
A notice of alleged copyright infringement to the Designated Agent concerning information residing on the University's systems or networks at the direction of the user must have the following:
- A description of the works claimed to be infringed.
- A description of the allegedly infringing works or location site sufficient to enable the Designated Agent to find them.
- Sufficient information to enable the Designated Agent to contact the complaining party.
- A statement that the complaining party believes in good faith that the use of the material is not authorized by the copyright owner, the owner's agent, or the Copyright Act.
- A signed statement that the information provided by the complaining party in the notice is accurate and, under penalty of perjury, that the complaining party is authorized to act on behalf of the copyright owner of one or more of the exclusive copyright rights.
- A physical or digital signature of the owner of an exclusive copyright right or the owner's authorized agent with accompanies the statement.
When properly notified of the potential copyright infringement, the Designated Agent will make a reasonable effort to contact the site or page owner of the materials in question. There will be an attempt to secure the voluntary take down of the work, but, if not, then the University will immediately disable access to the work unless it is immediately determined that the work is lawful under the copyright law. The owner of the site or page of the alleged infringing material may exercise their counter notice procedure rights set forth below. The Designated Agent may, but need not, undertake to determine if the work complies with copyright law.
After voluntary take down or the site is involuntarily disabled, the University may, but need not, proceed to counter notification on its behalf or on behalf of its employees and students, or the owner of the site may provide counter notification to the Designated Agent. Counter notices can claim only that either the copyright owner is mistaken and that the work is lawfully posted or that the work has been misidentified. A site owner may assert that use of another's work is fair use, which falls under the provision that the copyright owner is mistaken in characterizing the work as infringing. Various University officials may be consulted in arriving at a fair use determination.
Counter notices to the Designated Agent must contain the following:
- A physical or digital signature of the site or page owner.
- A description of the materials removed and its location before it was removed.
- A statement that the owner believes in good faith that the material was removed by mistake because the work is not infringing or that it was misidentified.
- Sufficient information to enable the Designated Agent to contact the owner who is filing the counter notice, e.g., name, address, phone number, email address, and his or her consent to jurisdiction of the federal district court with proper jurisdiction for any court actions arising from the infringement.
- A statement that the owner will accept service of process from the complaining party.
Access to the materials in question will be restored within ten to fourteen business days after the date the Designated Agent receives the counter notice unless the Designated Agent first receives a notice from the complaining party that he or she has filed an action seeking a court order to restrain the page owner.
The Designated Agent will promptly send a copy of any substantially conforming counter notice to the complaining party indicating that the site will be restored within ten to fourteen business days unless the Designated Agent receives a notice of court action.
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.
This policy shall be included in the WSU Policies and Procedures Manual and shared with appropriate constituencies of the University.
The General Counsel shall have primary responsibility for publication, dissemination and implementation of this University policy.