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ERIC Number: EJ771624
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Jun-1
Pages: 1
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0009-5982
Colleges Charge "Reconnect Fees" to Students Cited for Copyright Violations
Read, Brock
Chronicle of Higher Education, v53 n39 pA30 Jun 2007
Like most institutions that have received copyright-infringement notices from the entertainment industry, Stanford University has a straightforward process for dealing with the complaints. Campus officials identify students accused of piracy, ask them to delete the offending material from their computers, and disconnect from the campus network anyone who does not comply. Starting this fall, however, students who get disconnected will help Stanford pay for its trouble. The university will make first-time piracy suspects pay a $100 fee to get back on the campus network, and it will charge repeat offenders stiffer fines. A small but growing number of colleges have adopted similar "reconnection fees," arguing that doing so will help defray the surprisingly expensive process of responding to complaints filed under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). Stanford gives students 48 hours to respond to infringement notices, either by removing offending material from their computers or by contesting the accusations. Students who respond will not be disconnected from the campus network, so they will not have to pay a fine. Students who fail to answer in 48 hours will be fined, and multiple-time offenders will be immediately disconnected, leaving those students no choice but to pay steep reconnection fees. The fees are both an attempt to deter piracy and a method of reimbursing the information-security office, which has been overwhelmed by copyright complaints. The State University of New York at Albany has charged reconnection fees since 2003, cutting down on copyright-infringement notices, and helping the information-technology office afford things that might otherwise bust its budget (like a CD-ROM, filled with antivirus software, that the university gives out to students), according to the university's information-security officer. But some critics say those penalties are unfair and many colleges remain unwilling to charge students for copyright claims.
Chronicle of Higher Education. 1255 23rd Street NW Suite 700, Washington, DC 20037. Tel: 800-728-2803; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California; New York
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Digital Millennium Copyright Act 1998