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41204_42505_0.pngStudent Acceptable Use Policies (AUP)

One method of dealing with improper online form is to establish an Acceptable Use Policy (AUP). All users must agree to abide by the conditions of the AUP. Student user guidelines and disciplinary actions should be developed based upon district or school policy, and can vary from school to school.
There are a number of possible disciplinary actions you can invoke:
•       additional hours of training
•       meeting with student and parent
•       removing privileges or the account
•       user reimbursement for any possible damage to system
•       suspensions.
Before activating any user account, provide students and parents with guidelines and a contract for both to sign. Your FirstClass administrator can configure your user policies and guidelines to automatically open when any user logs into your site.
Tips for creating conferences and user accounts
•       Ensure that auto registration is always turned off.
•       Assign an administrator who will be responsible for creating user accounts manually.
•       Request that parents sign an account request form before the account can be activated.
•       Use the student’s graduating year to determine the length of time to keep the account.
•       Disallow aliases.
•       Make students responsible for their own account security. If a student accesses another student’s account, change the password and give the new password to the teacher until the matter is resolved. This will be the biggest problem with any user account.
•       Ensure that your policy states that your institution reserves the right to monitor all conferences and approve any information before it is posted.
•       Plan for the moderator to report to the teacher, who should contact students privately regarding posting issues.
•       When new conferences are created, choose one or two students who are very active on the system and ask them to report any questionable postings or problems, such as poorly designed permissions or an inappropriate posting.
•       Make it clear what language is appropriate and what is not, including swearing and forms of swearing (for example, using asterisks (*) or other symbols to denote vulgar terms).
Most school communities have user policies or contracts to inform users of the rules that must be followed online. They also establish an agreement with the user that can be used when dealing with user protocol.
This section lists sample Acceptable Use Policies (AUP) designed by FirstClass education sites for their own users. These AUPs are being used with permission from their respective owners.
9203_31904_3.pngHalton District
Halton District has put together a large amount of acceptable use guidelines as online web pages. Some of that information is presented here.
Acceptable Use Guidelines
The Halton District School Board ’s Wide Area Network (WAN) and its connections to the Internet shall be for the exchange of information in order to support the Board's administration and the user's education only.
Network Etiquette/Citizenship
• Users will not create, send or receive offensive messages or pictures from any source. For example, users will not post, publish or display any defamatory, inaccurate, abusive, obscene, profane, sexually oriented, threatening, racially offensive, sexist or illegal material.
• Users will not transmit or download information, media or software in violation of copyright laws.
• Only public domain resources or resources for which the author has given expressed consent of on-line distribution may be uploaded or downloaded. Software and resources downloaded will be used only under the terms and conditions specified by the creator or owner of those resources.
• Posting messages and attributing them to another user, or otherwise misrepresenting one’s identity online, is unacceptable.
• Creation, modification or transmission of any software having the purpose of damaging computer systems or files (e.g.,computer viruses) is prohibited. All software and files downloaded will be systematically checked for viruses before they are used on Halton systems.
• Any malicious attempt to harm or destroy data of any person, computer or network linked to the Halton WAN is prohibited.
• Users will not share their passwords or accounts with others and must make all efforts to safeguard this information from unauthorized users.
• Users will not attempt to access information for which they are not authorized.
• Users will not give out personal information such as home address, telephone number, parents’ work address/telephone number, credit card number or the school ’s name and address without permission.

Community Netiquette Guidelines
Keep in mind any guidelines can be bent or broken according to circumstances.
Creation Phase
•       Before using e-mail ... would a phone call or face-to-face meeting be more appropriate?
•       Appropriate uses for e-mail: reminders, activity/event information, individual assignments, etc.
•       Inappropriate: sensitive information (e.g. difficult learning problems, discipline issues, behaviour, etc.)
•       Use To:, Cc:, Bcc: appropriately (Cc: for information only, Bcc: recipients names will not appear to other addressees)
•       Subject should be as descriptive as possible (e.g. 'Johnny's math homework Mar 3rd')
•       keep messages brief (a screenful or less is a good rule of thumb and avoids scrolling to boot)
•       stay on a single topic, use separate messages if different topics or audiences are appropriate
•       write as you would a conventional written message by using:
        - simple, clear language
        - a courteous, positive, sensitive tone
        - proper punctuation, grammar, sentence and paragraph structure
        - emoticons and abbreviations if you are sure the recipients will understand them
•       avoid formatting (e.g. bold, underline, colours) as this might not be transmitted to other systems
•       include a signature file (name, contact information, etc.) if needed, and keep signatures short
Replying & Forwarding
•       include quoted text, but just the minimum amount necessary (e.g. don't include entire original message unless relevant)
•       select the appropriate mode (e.g. reply sender, reply all) to avoid spamming (see Resources > Glossary)
•       delete unnecessary message content before forwarding
•       reply to a message when the sender is expecting a response with a reasonable time period (e.g. 48 hours)
•       identify any applications needed to open attachments (if used)
•       be wary of large attachments, they are slow to download and may overload a user's mailbox
•       reread carefully (i.e. from the reader's perspective), imagine your message published in the local newspaper
•       automatically spellcheck before sending if available
•       be sensitive in your message, lest your message may be misinterpreted
•       wait 24 hours before sending e-mails composed under emotional duress
•       hit 'send' only if the message is true, necessary and kind (from an Arabian Proverb)

Guidelines For Chat (Synchronous Online Discussion)
Like face-to-face meetings, chats run smoother if participants agree to follow some guidelines. Beginner and advanced chatters alike will have more effective chats if they collaborate using these guidelines. However, experienced chat participants and moderators will know when it is appropriate to do things differently. For example, freestyle chatting might be more appropriate for brainstorming or with small/disciplined groups.
Basic Chat Guidelines
Face-to-face meeting etiquette generally applies to chats.
•       Introduce yourself when you log on.
•       Please be punctual (for scheduled chats, if late, don't interrupt discussion unnecessarily).
•       Take turns to avoid chaotic/multiple threads (unless that is the goal).
•       Use offline text editing (e.g. Notepad) where possible to:
- develop ideas/responses while waiting your turn;
- copy/paste your contributions when you are given the floor;
- take notes and/or post agenda items (as moderator).
•       Be polite and respectful as you would be in any f2f meeting.
Contribution Guidelines
An Arab proverb admonishes one to consider 'the three filters' before speaking to ensure that speech is pure. Participants should reflect on these three filters (plus two more shown below) before clicking 'send' in a chat.
Is it true? Is it necessary? Is it kind?
Is it brief? Is it on-topic?
Using Emoticons and Acronyms
Commonly understood short-forms can add meaning, but less common forms should be explained on first use (e.g. f2f = face to face). Search the web "acronyms" or "emoticons" for more.

:-)     happy
:-D     laughing
;-)     kidding, winking, sarcastic
btw     by the way
u c     you see
Moderator Guidelines

Catania's Law of Chat Entropy:020310_115031_0.png
(where C = chaos, N = size of group, S = skill of moderator)

•       Keep chat groups small where possible, if focussed/orderly discussion is the goal. 
•       Guide the group using an agenda or list of questions to stay focussed.
•       Moderate discussion with speakers lists, encouragement, direction as needed.
•       Tolerate different styles and approaches where possible (e.g. people who ignore guidelines in their excitement to get their points across, etc.)
•       Archive the chat session text for later discussion if needed.
•       Summarize notes in a separate document to provide meeting minutes if needed.
•       Thank participants for their attendance and contributions.
•       Close the chat at the agreed-upon time in a sensitive way.

based on netiquette

SYLLABICATION:  net·i·quette
PRONUNCIATION:  111003_84421_2.png   
NOUN:  Etiquette* practiced or advocated in electronic communication over a computer network.

ETYMOLOGY:   (Inter)net + (et)iquette.

•       I will follow all Tribes Agreements when participating online:
- Attentive Listening (in this case reading)
- Mutual Respect
- Appreciation Only/No Put Downs
- Participation/Right to Pass
•       I will follow all of the guidelines in the Elementary ICT Agreement (AUG)
•       I will not give out personal information such as my address, telephone number, parents’ work address/telephone number, credit card or the name and address of my school without permission.
•       I will tell my teacher right away if I come across any information that is inappropriate or makes me feel uncomfortable.
•       I will never send my picture or anything else without first checking with my parents and /or teacher.
•       I will not respond to any messages that are mean or in any way make me feel uncomfortable.
It is not my fault if I get a message like that. If I do I will tell my teacher right away.
•       I will not give out my password to anyone (even my best friends), other than my teacher
•       I will be a good on-line citizen and not do anything that hurts other people or is against the law.
•       I will never agree to get together with someone I "meet"on-line
•       I will talk with my parents about the rules for going on-line.
9203_31904_3.pngBranksome Hall
Used with permission from Branksome Hall and Lesley Monette, Director of IT, Branksome Hall
Technology and Network Acceptable Use Policy
Updated September 2004
Branksome Hall is committed to providing advanced technology resources and access to learning opportunities for our students, faculty and staff. These resources are to be used for educational purposes, for communication and to carry out the legitimate business of the school. The school offers these resources with the recognition that access to the network includes risks with the benefits it offers.

While the Internet has many sources of excellent information that are useful to our curriculum, it also has sources of information that are inaccurate, inappropriate or offensive. There is also the potential to commit illegal acts on a network or the Internet. It is impossible for Branksome Hall to guarantee that no student, faculty or staff will ever access these sources, either deliberately or inadvertently. Therefore Branksome Hall's Acceptable Use Policy has been prepared for all users of our network and computing resources. Users must conform at all times to the following policy. A "user" refers to any person using Branksome Hall's computing facilities or any person using technology within the school campus.  
Ethical Use of Computer and Network Resources
Proper Uses
The user may connect to and use Branksome Hall's computing and networking resources only for the purposes related to the user's studies and school business. All other uses are prohibited at all times.
Branksome Hall Expectations
Above all else, users are expected to use any computer technology in a way that will not disrupt its use by others and that does not contravene any of the school's policies or procedures.  Users are expected to voluntarily limit searches to topics and sites that are deemed appropriate, to "log out" properly, and to report information relating to or in support of improper or illegal activities to the school Principal immediately.  
Improper Uses
Acts inconsistent with ANY of the school's policies are considered improper uses of the school's computer and network resources.
Unlawful Use
•       intentionally destroying or damaging equipment, software or data belonging to Branksome Hall or others.
•       intentionally disrupting electronic communications or monitoring them without authorization.
•       copying copyrighted material without permission
Unethical Use: some of these may also be illegal
•       violating computer system security, software license agreements or another user's privacy
•       posting, e-mailing or transmitting, abusive, threatening, obscene or harassing materials
•       posting, e-mailing or transmitting, images or audio recordings not authorized by the owner
•       using school facilities for commercial purposes without the permission of the administration
•       using computer telecommunication facilities so as to impede or disrupt computing activities of others
•       distribution of unsolicited advertising, chain letters, mail bombing; phoning or message broadcasting after a recipient has requested that they stop
•       using without permission, computer accounts or network identification numbers (IP addresses) that are assigned to others.
The user should not use Branksome Hall's technological resources in a manner that is harassing to others. This includes posting images or e-mail messages that  intentionally cause discomfort to others. In addition, displaying images, sounds, or messages on a computer in a public area that causes discomfort to others who share that area is prohibited. Users should assume that their electronic correspondence is the legal equivalent of publicly spoken or written words.
No one must intentionally seek information about, browse, obtain copies of, or modify files, passwords or data belonging to other people whether at the school or elsewhere, unless specifically authorized to do so by those individuals. Users should also understand this also includes taking digital pictures or audio recordings of staff and students without their permission and using them or transmitting them to others in any way.   
Users should be aware that the absolute privacy of electronic information cannot be guaranteed and depends largely on the security procedures the users themselves follow. A System Administrator may assume access rights to a user's private files, when required for maintenance of the school's computer resources, in emergencies, or in the course of investigating possible wrongdoing.  In addition, Branksome Hall implements a computer monitoring station to identify viruses, excessive bandwidth use, and inappropriate use of technology.  This process displays the content of information traveling the network.  User should assume nothing on our network is private, and that they should not keep personal or inappropriate content on school computer equipment.  
System Security
Reasonable efforts must be made by all users to preserve the overall security of the system. This includes maintaining an updated, proper and secure password. Passwords should never be shared. A forgotten password or unauthorized use of a password should be reported to a System Administrator at once. Attempts to access information, files or system areas that are beyond the level of security that a user has been granted will be considered a forfeit of system privileges. If you encounter or observe a gap in the system or network security, you must report the gap to a System's Administrator. You must refrain from exploiting any such gaps in security.
Viruses are unauthorized computer programmes that may destroy or damage computer files on an infected computer. Users should be aware of the possibility that a virus may be located in any file or disk obtained from a third party. For this reason users must obtain the permission of a supervisor before loading any software onto a school computer. If you have any doubts or concerns about the source of any file that you plan to load onto a school computer, you must obtain the permission of a supervisor before loading the file.

I, the BranksomeNet User, by using the school network, acknowledge that I have read and understand the Branksome Hall Computer and Network Acceptable Use Policy and  I understand that violations of this Policy may result in the school rescinding my BranksomeNet, Internet and school network privileges, and may include additional disciplinary action.

(Branksome Hall acknowledges input from Appleby College's Acceptable Use Policy)
9203_31904_3.pngScarborough Board of Education
ScriBE’s purpose is to enhance the educational experience by providing curriculum resources and to assist communication between teachers and classes both within and outside Scarborough.
Private mail should remain private. Please note, however, that the administrative team can legally open private mail if that action seems necessary for the ongoing "health" of the system. This situation is rare and we will first attempt to request the user’s permission.
Students are allowed on the system only with the sponsorship of a teacher and only "see" the conferences that are appropriate.
The teachers did not want to share ScriBE with the student body as a whole. However, several students were allowed to use it based on the invitation of a teacher. This policy only formalized this practice and allowed the easy identification of student abuse, which could then be dealt with by the individual school.
The teachers created a special conference area call Students to denote to teachers that students would be able to read the information placed in these conferences.
Parents who wish access to ScriBE will have the same accesses and privileges as their children. The request for parent access must also come through a teacher.
In the classroom, offensive language is not allowed. Messages containing foul language or defamatory content will be removed and the creator will have privileges withdrawn. This wording gives the board the freedom to look for "offensive" language (such as racism, defamatory comments, foul language, and so on) and to handle accordingly.
Sharing of a ScriBE account with others will result in the withdrawal of privileges. Users are told to keep their passwords private, and not to save them in their settings files.
Shareware and public domain libraries are supported. In accordance with Board policies, computer programs portraying physical violence will not be allowed and the transfer of commercial software or other copywritten material is forbidden.
Vendors can have an account to contribute to the information pool or to assist with the technical support. Public advertising and pricing are allowed.
In general, if it’s not allowed in your school, it’s not allowed on ScriBE.
ScriBE policy implementation
ScriBE provides a training ground for the development of the skills necessary to access and manage information electronically. We are helping to extend education beyond the classroom without actually leaving it.
These policies are posted on ScriBE in a policies conference that opens automatically for each user. There is also a "things you should know" message—dealing with how e-mail should be used.
Acceptable Use Policy for Educational Technology 1999–2000
Shorecrest has made and will continue to make a significant investment of time and financial resources to bring technology into the classroom. Along with the increased educational resources that telecomputing brings to teachers and students comes an increased need to use them wisely and responsibly.
Please become familiar with the following Shorecrest Acceptable Use Policy for Educational Technology. When you have read this policy, please obtain both parent and student signatures and return the signed copy to your respective school office. Students who have not returned the policy will not be given access to Shorecrest’s computers and computer network.
Respect others
Communicate through computers as you would deal with people in person. Use appropriate language at all times. Do not slander or defame anyone, or represent others’ ideas as your own.
Keep personal information confidential
Do not reveal your real name, telephone number, address, password, credit information, or other information that could be used against you. Do not give out such information about anyone else.
Your account
You are responsible for your accounts at all times. Never let anyone use your accounts or your on-line identity. Keep passwords secret; never disclose them to anyone. Use passwords that are difficult to guess, and change a password if you suspect anyone knows it. Use only your own computer identity; do not log on as anyone else or use anyone else’s account.
Breach of security
If you find a security problem, report it to a teacher immediately; do not demonstrate it to others, or continue to use the computer. Do not attempt to defeat security software, including any kind of password protection. This is the electronic equivalent of taking a crowbar to a locked door, and it will be treated as seriously.
Except for your own schoolwork documents, do not delete, alter or reposition files, or transfer files to any school computer. Do not tamper with another person’s files.
Inappropriate material
Do not attempt to access material that is sexually explicit, obscene, or otherwise inappropriate. Use the Internet only for purposes related to schoolwork. Avoid irrelevant material and comply with teachers’ instructions about accessing specific areas.
Some unacceptable uses are:
•       Entering Internet chats (IRC); accessing Usenet or e-mail through browsers like Netscape (use Shoreline for e-mail); playing games or accessing game-related sites; and sending chain letters or other unnecessarily widespread messages.
•       If you receive any inappropriate messages or materials, contact a teacher. Do not reply to such messages.
•       Get permission before downloading files or filling out any sort of forms or message fields on the Internet. Avoid sites that send sounds or slow-loading graphics.
•       On the Internet and elsewhere in the Shorecrest systems, you may not use the facilities for your own commercial or political purposes.
•       Respect software copyright restrictions. Do not duplicate commercial software. Do not place any copyrighted software, including shareware, on a Shorecrest computer without permission of the Computer Department.
•       Take proper precautions not to bring viruses or other damaging software into any Shorecrest computer or network. Before using a floppy disk that has been off campus, bring it to a teacher.
•       Leave all settings as you find them. Do not change control panels, preferences, system components, or configuration files unless directly supervised by a teacher. Behave with restraint around computers; move calmly, and don't touch others' keyboards or mice.
•       Protect our computer hardware. Do not eat or drink near computers. Follow the shut-down procedure before switching off. Do not attach or detach any peripherals unless all components are powered down and unplugged; check with a teacher before connecting your own hardware. Do not tolerate any damage or theft by anyone.
9203_31904_3.pngClark County School District
Acceptable use policy
Computer network resources, provided by the Clark County School District in partnership with the Clark County Public Education Foundation, enable communication with electronic communities around the world. These computer network resources include InterAct™, Internet, e-mail, mainframe, and all other Internet service providers such as America Online and CompuServe, when used in an educational setting.
The use of these electronic resources shall be consistent with the purpose, mission, and goals of the Clark County School District and used only for educational purposes. The purpose in providing these services is to facilitate access to information and resources, promote educational excellence, and enhance communication between schools and the community.
The Internet is a network connecting thousands of computers throughout the world. The Internet can bring a wealth of educational material to the classroom, but may also contain material that is objectionable. The Clark County School District filters web sites believed to be inappropriate. However, no filtering system is perfect. The District cannot and does not represent that inappropriate or objectionable material can be completely filtered. Parent(s) and guardian(s) must consider this in deciding whether to permit their children access to the District’s computer network resources.
This Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) is provided so that staff, students, and members of the community using the District’s computer network resources are aware of their responsibilities. The use of these network resources is a privilege, not a right.
Access to district network resources
Staff, students, and members of the community may be given access to the District’s computer network resources. This access, including account and password, must not be shared, assigned or transferred to another individual.
The District will periodically require new registration and account information from school, staff, and community members. Adult users must notify the system administrators of any changes in account information (address, phone, name, and so on) within fifteen business days.
Access to the district’s computer network resources may be suspended or terminated if terms and conditions of this AUP are violated. Prior to a termination of access to the District’s computer network resources, the user will be informed of the suspected violation and given an opportunity to present an explanation. The user may request a review hearing with an appointed hearing officer within seven days of notification if the user feels that such action is unjust. After the review, access may be terminated if the hearing officer denies the appeal.
Each student must have a teacher sponsor and a signed Parent/ Guardian Permission Agreement before access is granted to the District’s computer network resources. A signed agreement must be renewed on an annual basis. The parent(s) or legal guardian(s) can withdraw their approval at any time, upon written request.
System security
Computer users may not run applications or files that create a security risk to the District’s computer network resources. If users identify a security problem, they must notify appropriate administrators immediately.
Any user reasonably deemed to be a security risk, or discovered to have a proven history of problems with other computer networks, may be denied access to the District’s computer network resources.
Users should immediately notify the system administrators if they believe that someone has obtained unauthorized access to their private account.
Respecting resource limits
Staff, students, and community members will not post chain letters or engage in spamming. Spamming is sending messages to a large number of people, or sending a large number of messages to a single person, with the intent of annoying users or to interrupt the system.
The system administrators reserve the right to set a limit on disk storage for network users.
Unless previously approved, users are responsible for any phone charges including, but not limited to, long distance charges, per minute (unit) surcharges and/or equipment or line costs, incurred by user while accessing computer network resources.
Illegal activities
The District will cooperate fully with local, state, or federal officials in any investigation related to illegal activities.
It is prohibited to sell or purchase goods and services without prior approval of the appropriate administrator.
Attempting to gain unauthorized access to the District’s network resources or go beyond authorized access is prohibited. This includes attempting to log in through another person’s account or accessing another person’s files.
Vandalism will result in cancellation of privileges to the District’s computer network resources. Vandalism is defined as any malicious attempt to harm or destroy data or equipment on any computer network.
It is prohibited to use the District’s computer network resources with the intent of denying others access to the system.
Advertising will be permitted on the District’s computer network resources with the prior approval of the appropriate administrator.
Intellectual property (copyright)
No copyrighted material is to be placed on the District’s computer network resources without written permission from the copyright owner.
All users of the District’s network resources must agree not to submit, publish, or display any type of material that violates this AUP.
Only public domain files, and files for which the author has given written consent for online distribution, may be uploaded to the District’s software libraries.
Software having the purpose of damaging the District’s network resources or other systems is prohibited.
Users may be required to use a District approved Internet browser or other software to access the computer network resources.
Polite and appropriate language is expected at all times.
Abusive messages are prohibited.
Harassment is prohibited. Harassment is conduct which is sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive that it adversely effects, or has the purpose or logical consequence of interfering with a user’s educational program, or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive environment. Behavior that continues after an individual is informed of its offensiveness may constitute evidence of an intent to harass. If told by a person to stop sending messages, the sender must stop.
Electronic mail and real-time conferencing
It is not the intention of the system administrators to inspect or disclose the contents of electronic mail or computer files sent by one user to another, without consent from either party, unless required to do so by the Clark County School District, local, state, or federal officials. Electronic mail is not private. As with written communication, users should recognize there is no expectation of privacy for electronic mail.
Users are expected to remove e-mail messages in a timely manner. All users must promptly report inappropriate messages received to a teacher, supervisor, or the system administrators.
Students should not reveal personal information such as addresses, phone numbers, passwords, or financial information to others. Private information may not be posted about another person.
A cancelled account will not retain electronic mail.
The system administrators reserve the right to terminate access to the District’s computer network resources if this AUP is violated while using real-time chat features, including video conferencing. The use of computer network technology resources shall be consistent with all Clark County School District policies and regulations.
Prior to receiving access to the District’s network resources, students, parents, and educators must submit a completed Network Access Form to the appropriate administrator or designee at their home school. To live, learn, and work successfully in an increasingly complex and information-rich society, students must use technology effectively.
9203_31904_3.pngUniversity of Maine
General statement of principles
The University of Maine encourages the creative and innovative use of information technology to enhance its teaching, research, and public service mission. Users will not have their right to access denied or abridged due to the individual's race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national origin or citizenship status, age, disability, or veteran’s status. The University respects the intellectual labor and creativity of others and seeks to protect the free and peaceful expression of ideas. All members of the University share responsibility for maintaining an environment where actions are guided by mutual respect, integrity, and reason.
The University of Maine expects all members of its community to use network systems with proper regard for the rights of others and the University. Abuse of these privileges will be subject to disciplinary action, as established by the operating policies and procedures of the University. The University reserves the right to limit access in response to evidence of violations of University policy or federal, state or local laws. All members of the University community are bound by federal, state and local laws relating to civil rights, harassment, copyright, security, pornography, privacy, and other statutes relating to electronic media. It should be understood that this policy does not preclude enforcement under the laws and regulations of the United States of America, the State of Maine or local communities.
Who is covered by this policy
All users of University of Maine electronic communications systems are subject to the provisions of this policy, including those who rely on remote or off-campus access to these systems.
Use of these systems implies consent with this policy, as well as other applicable University policies and local, state and federal laws. For individuals whose network accounts are primarily for representing units or special projects, further policies may apply as governed by the needs of the unit or project.
Individual privileges
The following individual privileges are extended to all users of electronic communication systems. However, it is understood that each of these privileges is conditioned upon acceptance of the accompanying responsibilities.
Free expression
There shall be no restrictions placed on the fundamental rights to free speech except those necessary to protect the rights of others and to preserve the order necessary for the University to function as an institution of higher learning. Given the diverse cultural backgrounds of users, the University cannot protect individuals against exposure to materials that they may consider offensive. Nevertheless, the University reserves the right to take restrictive actions in response to complaints that posted material creates a hostile environment for individuals or classes of individuals. The University also has the responsibility to take restrictive action when a user violates University policy or federal, state or local laws.
Users may expect to keep personal electronic mail correspondence reasonably confidential. Users should be sensitive to the inherent limitations of shared network resources in protecting privacy. Some examples of this may include printing personal messages on a shared printer or leaving a message or account open on a computer in a public computer lab. Specific personal electronic communications and computer files will not be searched deliberately to seek evidence of malfeasance except in an emergency or as part of a formal investigation by an authorized authority.
Due process
The University will use due process in cases of discipline resulting from rules violations. The University's administrative procedures promote fundamental fairness, although they do not follow the traditional common law adversarial method of a court of law. System administrators are authorized to take any actions deemed necessary to preserve the integrity of the system, including immediate temporary suspension of access by any user allegedly involved in a violation pending the outcome of an investigation. See below for the procedure for addressing violations of this policy.
Individual responsibilities
Users of the University of Maine's network systems accept responsibilities that include, but are not limited to, the following specific examples.
Respect for intended use of resources
Users are responsible for all actions taken on their network account. Individual password security is the responsibility of the user and he/she should take precautions against others obtaining unauthorized access to his/her personal account. If the user allows another individual access to his/her account, the user assumes full responsibility for the actions of this individual while logged into his/her account. Accounts are not to be used for conducting personal business enterprises, including consulting for private gain. The University’s electronic communication systems are to be used only for the furtherance of the University’s mission and not for personal benefit.
Respect for privacy of others
Users shall not access anyone else's electronic resources, including files and mail, without specific permission from the owner. Permission does not include sharing account information as designated above, but allows for collectively reading e-mail and sharing files using network services. The user shall not take advantage of another's inexperience or negligence to gain access to any computer account, data, software, or file for which he or she has not received explicit permission to access.
Respect for shared nature of resources
Users will not encroach on others' use of the University's computers and network facilities. No user should attempt to modify the University system or network facilities or to crash systems. Users should avoid activities that unreasonably tax systems resources, including but not limited to: sending an excessive number of messages either locally or over the Internet; participating in electronic chain letters, frivolously printing multiple copies of documents, files or data; excessive game playing; modifying system facilities, operating systems, or disk partitions; or damaging or vandalizing University computing facilities, equipment, software, or computer files.
Respect for rights of others
University computing resources will not be used to harm or threaten to harm the safety or environmental health of another individual or individuals. The user must comply with University policies and federal, state and local laws regarding discriminatory harassment. Examples of violations include, but are not limited to: harassment; defamation, violation of privacy; intentionally placing a person or persons in reasonable fear of imminent physical harm; giving or causing to be given false reports of fire or other dangerous conditions; or harassment or discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national origin or citizenship status, age, disability, or veteran status.
Respect for intellectual property
Respect for intellectual labor and creativity is vital to the academic discourse and enterprise. This principle encompasses respect for the right to acknowledgment, right to privacy, and right to determine the form, manner, and terms of publication and distribution. Examples of violations include, but are not limited to: copying copyrighted software without express written permission of the copyright owner; failing to obtain necessary licensing for software or to adhere to all licensing provisions (installation, use, copying, number of simultaneous users, term of license, and so on); plagiarism or inadequate attribution of the intellectual property of others; posting of texts, images or audio works in disregard of copyright restrictions; or unauthorized publication or distribution of another's work or writing.
Respect for integrity of system or network
Accounts shall not be used for unauthorized access and/or attempts to access computers, computer software, computer data or information, or networks without proper authorization, regardless of whether the computer, software, data, information, or network in question is owned by the University. Abuse of networks or computers at other sites using University of Maine resources will be treated as an abuse of computing privileges at the University. Users are prohibited from attempting to circumvent or subvert any system's security measures.
Reporting violations
If a user believes that a violation of this policy or criminal act has occurred, the user should contact the appropriate campus office. University officials will take appropriate action in accordance with established University procedures. Infractions that may be violations of federal, state, or local laws will be reported by University officials to the appropriate authorities.
In some situations, it may be necessary to suspend account privileges to prevent ongoing misuse while the alleged violation is under investigation. The system administrator reserves the right to immediate temporary suspension of the account(s) of anyone suspected of a violation, pending the outcome of investigation by the appropriate office. In the case of minor, first time offenses, the system administrator may choose to resolve the situation informally without reporting the violation to other University officials. Appeals of any disciplinary decision will be handled according to existing law, University policies, and disciplinary procedures.
Administration and implementation
Systems administrators will manage network systems in a manner that is consistent with the system's importance for campus communication and the need for privacy of personal electronic mail messages. In connection with their responsibilities, professional staff members may on occasion need access or monitor parts of the system and thereby be given access to the contents of certain electronic mail messages. System administrators will respect the privacy of personal communications encountered on the systems. However, if, during the course of routine duties, a system administrator encounters information that indicates that a breach of this policy or criminal act has been or is about to be committed, they will report the existence and source of this information to the proper authorities.
Administrators are not responsible for monitoring user activity or content on any network system. However, when they become aware of violations, either through the normal course of duty or by a complaint, it is their responsibility to refer the matter to the appropriate authority for investigation and possible discipline. To forestall an immediate threat to the security of a system or its users, system administrators may immediately suspend access of the people involved in the violation while the incident is being investigated. They may also take other actions to preserve the state of files and other information relevant to an investigation. Specific personal electronic communications and computer files will not be searched deliberately to seek evidence of malfeasance except when the appropriate authorities feel it is necessary in order to: enforce policies regarding harassment and the safety of individuals; to prevent the posting of proprietary software or texts, images, or audio works in disregard of copyright restrictions or contractual obligations; to safeguard the integrity of computers, networks, and data either at the University or elsewhere; and to protect the University against seriously damaging consequences.
In general, electronic mail is considered the private information between the sender and recipient account holder. There may be exceptional circumstances where the University may release electronic mail to other parties. These situations may include, but are not limited to, the death of the account holder, when an absent or terminated employee has received mail associated with his/her job responsibilities, or during the course of a criminal investigation by authorized legal authorities.
The University recognizes that all network system users are bound by federal, state, and local laws relating to civil rights, harassment, copyright, pornography, privacy, security and other statutes relating to electronic media. Nothing in this policy should be interpreted as precluding enforcement of the laws and regulations of the United States of America, State of Maine or any locality in the state of Maine.
Acceptable use agreement
The account issued to you by Information Technologies shall be used only in the manner described below. Violations of these rules may be cause for referral of the matter to the appropriate University judicial body or to the Department of Public Safety.
The account shall be used only by the person to whom it is issued. You are responsible for the actions of anyone using your account.
All passwords issued are to be held privately and securely. Be responsible for all use of your accounts and for protecting each account's password. In other words, do not share computer accounts. If someone else learns your password, you must change it.
The account shall be used for academic purposes pertaining to the University of Maine only. You may send and receive electronic mail and maintain personal information as long as you observe the rules of etiquette, including refraining from obscenities and profanity. You may NOT conduct business transactions on the UM system or through networks. This prohibition extends to consulting for private gain.
The account shall not be used for unauthorized access and/or attempts to access computers, computer software, computer data or information, or networks without proper authorization, regardless of whether the computer, software, data, information, or network in question is owned by the University. (That is, if you abuse the networks to which the University belongs or the computers at other sites connected to those networks, the University will treat this matter as an abuse of your University of Maine computing privileges.)
The user shall not take advantage of another's inexperience or negligence to gain access to any computer account, data, software, or file for which he or she has not received explicit permission to access.
The user shall not send fraudulent computer mail, break into another user's electronic Mailbox, or read someone else's electronic mail without his or her permission.
The user shall not use the University's computing resources to harass or threaten other users.
Software, other than freeware/shareware, may NOT be copied without written permission of the system administrator.
The user is responsible for maintaining the security of his or her own data and for making backups of such data.
The user shall not encroach on others' use of the University's computers. Examples are: disrupting others' computer use by excessive game playing; by sending excessive messages; by printing excessive copies of documents, files, data, or programs; by modifying system facilities, operating systems, or disk partitions; by attempting to crash or tie up a University computer; or by damaging or vandalizing University computing facilities, equipment, software, or computer files.
The user should report any abuse of the above to the appropriate project director, instructor, supervisor, system administrator, or other University authority..