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Acceptable Use Policy

last modified 2011-05-20 09:53 AM

This Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) document, including the following list of Prohibited Activities, is an integral part of your access to the network at Martin Luther College. If you engage in any of the activities prohibited by this AUP document Martin Luther College may suspend or terminate your account.

Martin Luther College's Acceptable Use Policy for Network Services is designed to help protect Martin Luther College, Martin Luther College's network users and the Internet community in general from irresponsible or, in some cases, illegal activities. The AUP is a non-exclusive list of the actions prohibited by Martin Luther College. Martin Luther College reserves the right to modify the Policy at any time, effective upon posting here.

Prohibited Uses of Martin Luther College Systems and Services

  1. Transmission, distribution or storage of any material in violation of any applicable law or regulation is prohibited. Copying, storing, and/or distributing copyrighted materials without appropriate authorization. Unauthorized copying may constitute plagiarism or theft. While music and video "sharing" programs make copyrighted material available (see legal alternatives below), it is still illegal to copy, store and distribute copyrighted materials without authorization.(see summary of civil and criminal penalties below) This includes, without limitation, material protected by copyright, trademark, trade secret or other intellectual property right used without proper authorization, and material that is obscene, defamatory, constitutes an illegal threat, or violates export control laws.
  2. Advertising, transmitting, or otherwise making available any software, program, product, or service that is designed to violate this AUP which includes, but is not limited to, the facilitation of the means to send Unsolicited Bulk Email, initiation of pinging, flooding, mail-bombing, denial of service attacks, causing congestion on the network by activities such as propagating "chain letters", "broadcasting" messages to groups or individuals, introducing any computer viruses, worms, Trojan Horses, spy ware, and playing of interactive network multi-user games.
  3. Unauthorized attempts by a user to gain access to any account or computer resource not belonging to that user (e.g., "cracking").
  4. Sharing login information and passwords with others. Be careful about making personal information about yourself and others available on the internet.
  5. Unauthorized access, alteration, destruction, or any attempt thereof, of any information of any Martin Luther College end-users by any means or device.
  6. Using Martin Luther College's Services to interfere with the use of the Martin Luther College network authorized users.
  7. Using the network for any purpose which violates federal/state laws.
  8. Using the network for commercial purposes.
  9. Misrepresenting your identity in the use of the network.
  10. Using an IP address not assigned to you.
  11. Sending or storing patently harassing, intimidating, abusive, or sexually explicit material.
  12. Intercepting or altering network packets or data transmissions.

Unacceptable uses of the network may result in reprimand, loss of Internet access, loss of your network account, or other disciplinary actions. In cases where unacceptable use severely impacts performance or security, Network Services will immediately suspend an individual's access privileges to maintain reasonable service for the rest of the network. This policy is subject to amendment.

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 of the United States Code). 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 Title 17, United States Code, Sections 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 at, especially their FAQ's at

Legal Sources of Online Content

Not all free sources of content are illegal. Some sites provide content at no charge; they are funded by advertising or represent artist who want their material distributed for free, or for other reasons. The link following has many sites, maintained by EDUCAUSE, that offer legal downloads, both free and at a cost:

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