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File Sharing and Copyright Infringement

Consequences of Illegal Downloading
St. Norbert College does not condone violations of copyright or intellectual property laws. If illegal materials are found on your computer, legal action may be taken against you by the copyright holder(s) of that material. Federal law (Title 17, United States Code, Sections 501 and 506) provides severe civil and criminal penalties for the unauthorized reproduction, distribution, rental, or digital transmission of copyrighted sound recordings. Criminal penalties can be as high as five years in prison or $250,000 in fines. Civil penalties can be $750 to $150,000 for each work (each song, movie, tv show, game, or software program) being illegally distributed.

The two primary groups that police the downloading of music and movies are the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) and the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA). These two groups constantly monitor downloads and websites for copyright violation.  When they see that a song or movie has been downloaded illegally, they notify the school who then takes steps to internally identify the person who downloaded the file.

St. Norbert College regularly receives complaints from organizations acting on behalf of the entertainment and software industries regarding users on our network illegally trading copyrighted files.  We strongly recommend that you uninstall all file-sharing software from your computer and remove all illegally obtained files.

Legal Alternatives
Some of the more popular legal online media sources, include iTunes, Amazon, Redbox Instant, Spotify, and NetFlix. If you want to purchase access to songs or movies, find a service that has negotiated copyright agreements with the companies representing the artists. It is ultimately your responsibility to ensure that the files you are downloading and sharing are legal copies.

More Information
The College strongly encourages all students to remain safe and legal by refraining from training copyrighted audio, video, software, and games.  To help better inform the community about this issue, it is encouraged to review the following sites for additional information.