Be Informed. Be Ethical. Be Legal.
Otterbein’s Policy on the Use of Copyrighted Material.
Otterbein University promotes compliance to United States Copyright Law, Title 17 of the United States Code. This federal law protects published and unpublished works including literary, dramatic, musical, artistic, and certain other intellectual works.
What happens if I get caught? (Otterbein University's policy)
Currently, Otterbein University receives copyright infringement notices, which means that individuals' machines were identified downloading/uploading copyright material without authorized consent. When we receive a notice, Otterbein University adheres to the following policy: We contact you to inform you of the infringement notice and ask you to meet with us. If you do not comply, your network access will be disabled. Once we meet, we will discuss the notice and ask you to remove all copies of the unauthorized content. The incident will be documented with appropriate Otterbein personnel. If you engage in another unauthorized copyright infringement act, you risk further actions including permanent removal of your network access and further disciplinary actions.
What happens if I get caught? (federal law)
Further, and most important, be aware that Otterbein University will not be able to prevent any further legal action against you if you were caught. Even if you are a first time offender, the copyright holder may pursue legal action against you. Legal action could result in criminal penalties of as much as five years in prison and/or $250,000 in fines. You could also be sued by the copyright holder in civil court, which could cost you hundreds of thousands of dollars more in damages and legal fees.
How can I get caught?
When you use such services as BitTorrent and peer to peer (P2P) to download and upload files, you are not anonymous. Whenever you connect to the network, your computer is assigned a unique IP address. This unique IP address is used to identify your computer as the source of available files to all other computers on P2P or BitTorrent. P2P allows your computer to exchange files with other computers that are running similar software. BitTorrent is a client-server service using a group of computers called a "swarm" uploading/downloading the same file. Files you download/upload can be traced back to you.
How do I prevent copyright infringement?
If you have P2P or BitTorrent software installed on one or more of your computers connected to the Internet, delete it, or if you have a legal reason to use the software, delete any unauthorized files in your "shared folder." Also be aware that file sharing is one of the easiest ways to send and receive viruses and/or spyware that will adversely affect the performance of your machine and others on the network. Finally, read the links posted here to be informed and how to legally obtain works.
Click the links below to learn about copyright basics and Fair Use.