Electronic or Digital Resources

Computer software and electronic transmissions of text or imagery are protected under the Copyright Act of 1976. Users should be aware that data on the central systems are backed up onto tape and may be subpoenaed in a court case.

Use and Ownership of Software

Unauthorized copying of software is illegal. Copyright law protects software authors and publishers, just as patent law protects inventors. Unauthorized copying of software by individuals can harm the entire academic community. If unauthorized copying proliferates on campus, the College may incur a legal liability.

Respect for the intellectual work and property of others has traditionally been essential to the mission of the College. As part of the College community, Information Services values the free exchange of ideas. Just as we do not tolerate plagiarism, we do not condone the unauthorized copying of software, including programs, applications, data bases, code, and documentation. Therefore, we expect all users of the College computing facilities to subscribe to the following statement of principle (developed by the EDUCOM Software Initiative) about intellectual property and the legal and ethical use of software: Respect for intellectual labor and creativity is vital to academic discourse and enterprise. This principle applies to works of all authors and publishers in all media. It encompasses respect for the right to acknowledgment, right to privacy, and right to determine the form, manner, and terms of publication and distribution. Because electronic information is volatile and easily reproduced, respect for the work and personal expression of others is especially critical in computer environments. Accordingly, every user of Kalamazoo College’s computing resources is expected to avoid violations of authorial integrity, including plagiarism, all invasion of privacy, unauthorized access, and trade secret and copyright violations.

No user is allowed to store or use private copies of licensed software (except that provided by Information Services (IS)) on any Kalamazoo College computer system unless the user provides IS with a copy of a license agreement allowing such possession. Stolen or bootleg copies of software are not allowed on any Kalamazoo College computing system. No user may copy, or attempt to copy, any proprietary or licenses software provided or installed by IS. This includes software on the SUN systems as well as that provided for use on faculty, staff and lab microcomputers. No user may install ANY software on Kalamazoo College microcomputer lab machines without first having the express permission of IS staff and their assistance. The IS staff will refuse to assist or offer support to any person who is using illegally obtained or improperly licenses software. Proof of software purchase, serial numbers or OEM numbers may be required for any re-installation of software. All software (i.e., programs and associated documentation) developed using IS computing resources and facilities is the property of Kalamazoo College. Any exception to this policy must be arranged beforehand with the Director of Information Services.

Use of Other Forms of Electronic or Digital Materials

In addition to software, there are other forms of electronic or digital materials that are covered under the U.S. Copyright Act of 1976. Common violations of this policy include unauthorized use or distribution of:

  • Text and Data
  • Trademarked Images – This includes corporate logos and cartoon characters.
  • Photographs – This includes all photographs that are not in the public domain.
  • Artwork – This includes scanned or computer generated artwork that is not your own.
  • Video – This includes video clips of movies, television shows, etc.
  • Audio – This includes any audio file that is not your intellectual property.
    • Many of these files are currently available as MP3 files.
    • Sound recording infringements are punishable by up to 5 years in prison and $250,000 in fines.

In addition to violating copyright laws, using text and data without proper citation is plagiarism.

Plagiarism is a violation of the Honor code.

See Information Services Policies for specific policies regarding electronic and digital resources.

Please Note: We routinely analyze our computing resources to assure optimal performance. This includes monitoring traffic on the network. We reserve the right to review a student’s account when unusual activity warrants or if we receive a complaint.