Higher Education Opportunity Act - Peer-to-peer File Sharing Disclosure

General

In accordance with the Higher Education Opportunity Act of August 14, 2008, and Federal regulations issued by the Department of Education on October 29, 2009, Channel Islands provides the following information.

Unauthorized distribution of copyrighted material, including unauthorized peer-to-peer file sharing, may subject students to civil and criminal liability.

Summary of Civil and Criminal Penalties for Violation of Federal Copyright Laws

Copyright infringement is the act of exercising, without permission or legal authority, one or more of the exclusive rights granted to the copyright owner under Section 106 of the Copyright Act (Title 17, United States Code [17 USC]). These rights include the right to reproduce or distribute a copyrighted work. In the file-sharing context, downloading or uploading substantial parts of a copyrighted work without authority constitutes an infringement.

Penalties for copyright infringement include civil and criminal penalties. In general, anyone found liable for civil copyright infringement may be ordered to pay either actual damages or "statutory" damages affixed at not less than $750 and not more than $30,000 per work infringed. For "willful" infringement, a court may award up to $150,000 per work infringed. A court can, in its discretion, also assess costs and attorneys' fees. For details, see 17 USC 504-505.

Willful copyright infringement can also result in criminal penalties, including imprisonment of up to five years, and fines of up to $250,000 per offense.

For more information, please see the Web site of the U.S. Copyright Office, especially their Frequently Asked Questions.

Channel Islands Policies With Respect to Unauthorized Peer-to-Peer File Sharing

Annual Disclosure

Consistent with our educational principles, we view education as the most important element in combating sharing of copyrighted materials at Channel Islands. We use a wide variety of methods to inform our community about the law and Channel Islands' response to copyright infringement claims:

  • Every fall we send an e-mail notice, consistent with the notification requirements of HEOA, to all students regarding the illegal distribution of copyrighted materials.
  • At orientation, information is provided to entering students.
  • Policies regarding illegal distribution of copyrighted materials are published in the Student Guidebook.
  • At least once a year, a message regarding illegal distribution of copyrighted materials and Channel Islands' strategies for combating it will be sent to all employees by the Vice President for Technology & Innovation.

Plans to "Effectively Combat" the Unauthorized Distribution of Copyrighted Material

Channel Islands T&I operates software that attempts to detect the peer-to-peer sharing of copyrighted materials on campus, and logs the network identity of the computer from which the alleged violation has occurred.

T&I may use this information as follows:

  • To monitor the log of copyright violation detections, in order to determine the extent and frequency of such violations and determine the effectiveness of the Channel Islands program to combat such violations.
  • To provide a "graduated response" when multiple alleged violations occur from a single network address. While the initial response to a violation is user education, multiple violations will result in referral to the appropriate campus authorities for a disciplinary response consistent with other violations of campus policies.

For more details, visit BP.03.001 - HEOA Compliance.