The Higher Education Opportunity Act (HEOA) includes 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
- Certify to the Secretary of Education that they 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
TCC uses a wide variety of methods to inform students about copyright laws:
- The TCC Copyright Website provides information and guidelines of copyright laws and fair use to the campus community.
- All students are required to adhere to the practices stated in the “Student Code of Conduct” (SCC). SCC includes a section on copyright compliance, and is included in the Student Handbook and posted on the College’s website.
- Each year, the Office of Student Affairs publishes the TCC Student Handbook and reviews each section in Student Orientation.
TCC uses several technology-based deterrents to combat the unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials:
- TCC utilizes Solarwinds traffic monitoring to identify the largest bandwidth users. When high-bandwidth consumption is observed, the user is contacted to ensure that the purpose of usage is legitimate.
- TCC currently blocks all known P2P traffic via iBoss Web Content Filtering and Security Services.
- TCC’s procedures concerning the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998: If the College receives a complaint that a user is redistributing copyrighted material, that user's Internet connection will be blocked until the complaint is resolved. If the College receives multiple complaints about a single user, their computer will be removed from the network and the user will be required to meet with the appropriate Dean\Director and the Vice President of Information Technology. Disciplinary action may be taken at that time.
Alternative Online Sources for Copyrighted Materials
Educause maintains a comprehensive list of Legal Downloading Resources. TCC encourages users to take advantage of these legitimate sources.
Beginning in 2011-12 and periodically thereafter, TCC will annually review the procedures and revise them as necessary to remain in compliance.