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Millsaps College Compliance with the Higher Education Opportunity Act Peer-to-Peer File Sharing Requirements

Information Technology Services


This page outlines Millsaps College's plan to comply with the Higher Education Opportunity Act (HEOA), 2008. HEOA includes provisions designed to reduce illegal uploading and downloading of copyrighted works through peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing on college campuses. These provisions include requirements that institutions:

  • 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;
  • implement procedures for handling unauthorized distribution of copyrighted material, including disciplinary procedures. See policy.
  • use one or more technology-based deterrents to illegal file sharing.
  • periodically review the effectiveness of the plans to combat the unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials by users of the institution's network using relevant assessment criteria.

Annual Disclosure

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

  • MajorFacts, the student handbook,
  • Code of Conduct and Honor Code
  • Pre-registration and Orientation references to policies
  • CourseConnect link to copyright policies
  • Millsaps web page on copyright and illegal downloading
  • Notices posted in student computer labs.
  • All members of the Millsaps Community endorse a Computer User Agreement that includes a section on copyright compliance.
  • Library FAQ and ITS policies web page
  • Computing support staff, including student Help Desk workers, are regularly trained on the College position with respect to copyright issues.
  • Annual notice to each student and employee containing a list and brief description of consumer information the college must disclose and institutional policies and sanctions including Federal copyright law penalties.

Use one or more technology-based deterrents

Millsaps currently employs bandwidth shaping to limit P2P traffic and can employ other limits as needed. Students and employees found to be using excessive bandwith are contacted to insure bandwidth consumption is for legal purposes and that the user is aware of the College's policies concerning illegal file sharing.

The College investigates all Digital Millennium Copyright Act notices from copyright holders.

Offering Alternatives to Illegal File Sharing

The Millsaps web site provides links to sites that provide numerous options for obtaining music, videos, and other digital content in a legal manner. Members of the Millsaps community are encouraged to take advantage of these legitimate sources of digital content.

Reviewing Effectiveness

Beginning in 2012-13 and periodically thereafter we will examine how well the college community is informed about illegal file sharing and other copyright regulations; the extent to which community members are taking advantage of legal alternatives to file sharing; the impact of our technical efforts to combat illegal file sharing; and other aspects of our plans to combat the unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials.