Digital Millenium Copyright Act (DMCA) Copyright Infringement Notification: procedures followed by George Mason University's Copyright Resources Office
When an enforcement agency sends a copyright infringement notification to the university specifying a copyright violation (e.g., illegal downloading of movies, software, games, or music for further sharing), the Copyright Resources Office (CRO) takes these steps, as needed:
- Identifies the IP address "owner."
- Sends an electronic StopIT letter to the responsible individual.
- Receipt of a second notice requires the offending individual to contact the CRO via telephone or email to arrange an interview.
- A third offense results in partition of the offender's port to discontinue Internet service provided by the university.
- The CRO contacts the Network Operations Center (NOC) to request identification of the individual. The entire content of a copyright infringement notice received by the CRO from an enforcement agency will be forwarded to NOC. Based on the details (e.g., IP address and port number) provided by the enforcement agency, a department, staff or faculty member, or student may be identified.
- If it is NOT a static address, computer hardware ID for the matching date and time of the violation will be requested from NOC.
- If the university owns the computer used to download copyrighted files to be shared illegally, the CRO will contact the appropriate ITU field services staff to have the infringing material removed from the computer, as well as any programs allowing distribution of said materials.
- If the computer is located in a student dorm and is affiliated with a student, most likely the computer belongs to the student, in which case GMU is merely the online service provider. Consequently, the CRO may:
1) send a StopIT Notice #1 to the individual associated with the ISP/port requiring removal of the stated copyrighted material, 2) send a StopIT Notice #2 to the individual requiring removal of the stated copyrighted material, as well as requiring a mandatory interview with the Head of the CRO, or 3) upon receipt of a third violation, take steps to partition the port through which the student is providing access to the copyrighted material listed in the infringement notification. The port would remain partitioned until further notice, until an interview is conducted, or until the end of the semester.