Annual Copyright Compliance Message to Students (2019)

The following message was sent to U-M students on September 19, 2019:

Subject: Important Information about Digital Copyright Compliance

Greetings U-M Students,

This is an annual reminder, required by federal law, to help you understand your responsibilities and avoid potential legal problems related to copyright infringement.

In a creative, academic community such as ours, it is important to uphold the artistic rights of others, including those of copyright holders. At the same time, creativity and inquiry often require building on the work of others, and it is equally important to understand your rights as a user of copyrighted material.

Understand your responsibilities
If you make or acquire unauthorized copies of copyrighted works, you may be infringing on someone else's rights. This can happen when you share third-party content through social media sites, such as YouTube, or peer-to-peer (P2P) file-sharing technology, such as BitTorrent. Using file-sharing technologies is not in itself illegal, but what you share and how you share it may be.

Avoid potential legal problems
Infringement, even when done unknowingly, is a violation of federal law and may be subject to civil damages, criminal fines, or jail time. It also violates the following university policies:

For more information, including resources for legal options for downloading digital media and a quiz to test your knowledge of copyright infringement, visit: Copyright Compliance and Copyright Basics.

In addition, visit the Safe Computing website to find more IT security and privacy tips, tools, and news.


E. Royster Harper
Vice President for Student Life

Ravi Pendse
Vice President for Information Technology and Chief Information Officer

Sol Bermann
Chief Information Security Officer and Executive Director of ITS Information Assurance
U-M Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) Agent