Penalties for Copyright Infringement

Penalty for Downloading or Sharing from P2P Networks if Subpoenaed

Uploading or downloading works protected by copyright without the authority of the copyright owner is an infringement of the copyright owner's exclusive rights of reproduction and/or distribution. Anyone found to have infringed a copyrighted work may be liable for statutory damages up to $30,000 for each work infringed and, if the copyright owner proves willful infringement, that amount may be increased up to $150,000 for each work infringed. The penalty for movie infringements can be up to $250,000 per movie file. In addition, an infringer of a work may also be liable for the attorney's fees incurred by the copyright owner to enforce his or her rights.

Actions a Copyright Holder Can Take

At this time Kent State University falls under "Safe Harbor", which protects the student, faculty and staff by complying with the DMCA's request to remove the infringing material, stop access to the infringing material, and educate the violators.

BUT KEEP IN MIND the following...

Kent State University can only protect you to an extent. If a subpoena is served on the university, then the university will be required to give the name of the person who received the infringement notice.

Copyright owners can file civil suits to recover damages and costs. In many cases, statutory damages of up to $30,000, or up to $150,000 for willful infringement, may be awarded even if there is no proof of actual damages. In addition, in certain cases of willful infringement, the government can file criminal charges, which may result in substantial fines and imprisonment.

Use of an academic network does not confer immunity from copyright law, nor can Kent State University protect its students, faculty, or staff from criminal investigations or lawsuits relating to their personal actions.

Computer is Sharing Files without Owner's Knowledge

Yes. Kent State University does not actively look for computers sharing files in violation of copyright law. Some organizations, such as the RIAA, MPAA, MediaForce, Universal Studios, and others, however, do. If they find that your computer is distributing files to which they (or someone that they represent) owns the copyright, then you could get into serious trouble. Currently, the various organizations will request that Kent State University make the illegal file sharing stop. To do this, Security and Access Management will typically disable the machine's network access.

Kent State University expects students to take reasonable precautions to secure their personal computers and will be held responsible for misconduct that occurs from others' use or misuse of their systems.

If you receive a copyright violation notice and suspect that your computer has been compromised, please contact Security and Access Management 330-672-5566 or The Tech Spot in Tri-Towers.

A Friend Set Up the File Sharing without Computer Owner's Knowledge

You are responsible for the purposes in which your machine is used. Do not allow anyone to use your user name/account, as you are responsible for what happens under that user name. You should always set up accounts for your users, and disallow guests, visitors, or strangers to access your machine without your permission and knowledge. If you have set up accounts on the machine, you are still at least partially responsible for what those users do because it is your machine.


This page is maintained by the Department of Infrastructure Engineering's DMCA Compliance Team
Phone: 330-672-3929