Montana State University


Montana State University
P.O. Box 172080
Bozeman, MT 59717-2080

Tel: (406) 994-1929
Fax: (406) 994-1918
Location: Room 1, North Hedges Hall


Digital Millennium Copyright Act Violations


The purpose of this document is to set forth the policies and procedures followed by Montana State University when complaints about violation of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act are received.


These policies and procedures apply to all users of Montana State University networks, regardless of the device.

Policy statement

Montana State computing services, including network (wired and wireless) connections, may not be used to share copyrighted materials (files, programs, songs, videos/movies, etc). Sharing copyrighted material without the copyright holder's express permission is a direct violation of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, and will not be tolerated at MSU.


Copyright infringement is a violation of federal law and subject to civil and/or criminal sanctions. Thus, every user of Montana State University networks and computing services must comply with University copyright guidelines and policies. When MSU receives copyright infringement complaints, preservation notices, pre-settlement notices, subpoenas, and/or settlement letters, they are taken seriously and acted upon accordingly under the provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, Title 17, United States Code, Section 512.

Pursuant to the DMCA, MSU has a designated agent to receive notification of alleged copyright infringement occurring through the University's networks. Under the authority of the designated agent, the Auxiliary Services Information Technology Division will acknowledge receipt and handle all complaints alleging infringement violations.


MSU is required by federal law to remove copyrighted materials from the infringing source when informed by the copyright holder. Violation of a federal law is a violation of MSU's Student Code.

Alleged violators will receive an email notification or call with a copy of the original complaint, explaining what must be done to respond to the alleged copyright infringement violation.

P2P File Sharing Guide

Information provided in part by ResNet, North Carolina State University, and ResNet, Kent State University.

It is ILLEGAL to download or share copyrighted files! These instructions are for the legal sharing of files! ResNet in no way endorses the use of file sharing software, which will not be supported by ResNet staff.

You Can Improve the Performance of the Network in the Following Ways:

1. Don't use filesharing software.

Don't use filesharing software to download or share copyrighted files. It is illegal, and the recording industry is prosecuting college students who share such materials.

The RIAA has recently won lawsuits against students at other universities for sharing copyrighted materials. Making college students pay $12,000-$17,000 in legal fees and penalties.

The University cannot protect you if you are caught.

2. Disable your file sharing applications when you are not actively using them.

By keeping these applications running even when you're away from your computer, you limit the amount of bandwidth available to your friends and neighbors. Many of these applications make it hard for you to fully shut them down, allowing file sharing to take place even after you think you have exited the program. Unless they are explicitly turned off (often from the System Tray), you may still be sharing files. If you're not sure how to shut down your application completely, look at the information provided below.

3. Limit the amount of bandwidth you use for sharing files, or don't share files at all.

We recommend allowing no more than two simultaneous uploads or downloads at a time.

Use the following links to configure the most popular filesharing applications:

Please note that MSU does not endorse the use of any of these applications. Some have very poorly written code, and most of them contain spyware/adware. Downloading files from unknown sources greatly increases the risk of receiving a file infected with a virus, worm, or Trojan. This puts your computer, your files, and your personal information (i.e. credit card numbers, bank account PINs, etc) at serious risk.

4. Read and follow the rules for computer and network usage at MSU and the law regarding copyright.

Please refer to the ResNet AUP and the MSU AUP for more information.

5. Encourage your friends and hall mates to follow these guidelines.

Filesharing affects everyone.

The network is a shared resource, and filesharing has been known to slow down campus networks. If your friends are sharing files, they're affecting your network connection, too.