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Copyright Center

HEOA (Higher Educational Opportunity Act of 2008)

HEOA Compliance Plan

Bellevue University

March 2015


This document outlines Bellevue University’s plan to comply with the Higher Education Opportunity Act (HEOA) regarding its provisions to reduce the illegal uploading and downloading of copyrighted works through peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing.

 Specifically, HEOA requires institutions to:

  • Make an annual disclosure that informs students that the illegal distribution of copyrighted materials may subject them to criminal and civil penalties and describes the steps that institutions will take to detect and punish illegal distribution of copyrighted materials;
  • Have developed plans to “effectively combat” the unauthorized distribution of copyrighted material including "the use of one or more technology-based deterrents";
  • Offer alternatives to illegal file sharing to the extent practical;
  • Identify procedures for periodically reviewing the effectiveness of the plans to combat the unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials.

In compliance with the Higher Education Opportunity Act (HEOA) of 2008 with regard to peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing, Bellevue University has taken the following concrete steps to curb illegal downloading on our University computer networks.

Part 1:  Informing the Community

1-1. Where can information be found about copyright issues and responsibilities? 

Bellevue University has developed a copyright information center to provide its students and staff with up to date information and education. The center provides resources that answer questions about digital copyright, file sharing, and Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) notification procedures at Bellevue University, what students and staff should do to remain in compliance with copyright law, and what penalties may be incurred.

1-2. What mechanism(s) are you using to educate your community?

Bellevue University's educational objective is to develop, implement, and disseminate knowledge and awareness of copyright and the penalties of infringement of those copyrights. We accomplish our objectives through a variety of mechanisms that include the following:

  • We provide copyright workshops, as needed, to notify the campus community outlining federal law, university policy and practices, and the potential internal and external sanctions applicable to copyright infringement, including unauthorized P2P file sharing via the University computer network.
  • On our library website, we provide links to videos and other resources on copright compliance
  • We include HEOA policy statements in all campus handbooks (i.e. student, faculty, adjunct, employee, etc.) and catalogs.
  • We post notices to students and employees on the web site, in campus classrooms, computer labs, and the library.
  • We include information notifying users of file sharing risks and copyright requirements, responsibilities, and consequences on the logon page for all wireless networks and campus networked computers.

Part 2:  Offering Alternatives

 2-1. Are you carrying out your own survey of alternatives or linking to one or more lists maintained by others? If the latter, which list(s)?

There are many legal sources for copyrighted material. We have adopted the EDUCAUSE list of legal alternatives as our official list.

2-2. Have you made any special arrangements with one or more content providers to obtain content through legal methods?

Not currently.   

Part 3: Technology based deterrents

3-1. What technology-based deterrent(s) have you decided to use?

Bellevue University deploys the network monitoring solution CopySense from Audible Magic. It distinguishes between legal and illegal file sharing, and it automatically responds to violators with direct messages reminding them of campus network usage policies. It also allows us to implement increasing levels of restriction for repeat offenders.

 3-2. What procedures are you using for handling unauthorized distribution of copyrighted material (e.g., monitoring, sanctions, etc.)?

The University responds to all Digital Millennium Copyright Act notices and other copyright violations according to its policies and practices. 

When a violation has been detected, the Copysense appliance detects illegal file sharing activity; it severs the connection and immediately redirects the user to a page reminding them of Bellevue University’s policy. Any required follow-up will be guided by university policies and practices and may also result in civil or criminal procedures.

Part 4: Review of the plan

4-1. How are you periodically reviewing the plan? 

We periodically survey our community to assess the effectiveness of our communications and education effort. We will continue to analyze the impact of our technical efforts to combat illegal file sharing and other aspects of our plans to combat unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials.