It can be easy to download, copy and share software,
music, film, video and information from the Internet, but
it is illegal if the material is copyright. It is also a
breach of the University ICT Acceptable Use
Policy if you break copyright when using the University’s IT
Misuse of the network may lead to disciplinary
proceedings and may even result in formal legal action through the
If you connect your computer, phone or other electronic
device to the University's IT network you should:
P2P applications such as BitTorrent, BearShare,Vuze,
Morpheus, iMesh and Lucky Wire, allow you to share files e.g.
music, movies and software with other people over the
Internet but they also make it easy for you to break the
law. You could be sharing copyright-protected files without
knowing it. More about
the risks from OnGuard Online.
Commercial organisations actively monitor internet file sharing
activity and are able to trace file sharing and downloads to an
individual PC/network connection. If a copyright infringement is
traced to a PC connected to the University network disciplinary action will be
P2P Terminator is a
free download. This allows you to turn file sharing on and off with
a mouse click, so you can disable file-sharing while on
campus. If you install this software, be aware that:
The University's ICT Acceptable Use
Policy states that you should not illegally share copyrighted
material over the University’s IT network. This includes email, web
pages, ftp, Hotline, IRC and peer-to-peer file sharing. It applies
to both University owned computers as well as your personal laptop
and other electronic devices.
All types of media are subject to copyright
including books, film, music, software and pictures. If you use,
download or publish any of these media types it is your
responsibility to ensure that you have the legal right to use the
media in that way. For more advice about using copyright material
in your studies contact the University’s Copyright Co-ordinator.
The University has a responsibility both under
criminal law and to comply with the JANET Acceptable Use Policy to
take action to prevent illegal behaviour and enforce penalties
against individuals who breach copyright.
Infringements of copyright, unauthorised
distribution and illegal downloading fall within the Student Code of
Conduct and Disciplinary Procedure and action will be taken as
In addition to the University’s disciplinary
procedure, there are several criminal and civil legislative
penalties that the individual can incur including:
More information about the legislative
penalties can be found in the Digital
Economy Act 2010 and the Intellectual Property
Office - Legislation.
video about the dangers of file-sharing from students at
the University of Wisconsin - advice for American students, but the
same issues apply to UK students.
Respect Copyrights provides
guidance on legal downloading and avoiding digital piracy.
Bay TSP - Takedown
Notice provides information about Copyright Infringement
Notices and provides context for the legal penalties.
For further advice about file sharing, please contact the IT
Service Desk on ext. 2000 or 01902-322000.
More information about copyright can be found on the Learning
Date last modified: 12th August
Last reviewed: 12th August 2011
University of Wolverhampton, Wulfruna Street, Wolverhampton, WV1 1LY
Course enquiries: 0800 953 3222, General enquiries: 01902 321000, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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