Conditions of Use
Grant MacEwan University works to create an intellectual environment in which students, staff, and faculty may feel free to create and to collaborate with colleagues both at MacEwan University and at other institutions, without fear that the products of their intellectual efforts will be violated, misrepresented, tampered with, destroyed, or stolen. This intellectual environment is fostered by an atmosphere of trust and confidentiality that in part is encouraged by the computing environment that exists at MacEwan University.
Authority to Use
The information resources at MacEwan University are for your use as a student, faculty, or staff member of MacEwan University. It is a policy of MacEwan University that these information resources be used by you respecting the public trust through which they have been provided and in accordance with the policy and regulations established from time to time by MacEwan and its operating units.
MacEwan agrees to make reasonable efforts to provide you with computing facilities appropriate to the tasks you have been asked to undertake, and that these facilities will be available as required. In return, you agree to use the facilities provided to you for the purposes they were intended, knowing that you are accountable for their use.
The computing facilities you use are provided for you by one of MacEwan's teaching, administrative, or service units. In some cases you will be provided with a computer account (whether as an individual or as a guest) on a MacEwan computer system, whereas in other cases you will be provided with access to facilities such as workstations or computing laboratories. You may be give access to the facilities as an individual or as part of a group, such as a class. Under any of these alternatives, your responsibilities and MacEwan's responsibilities are the same.
MacEwan reserves the right to withhold access to the computing facilities provided to you if there are reasonable grounds to suspect that your continued access to the facilities would pose a threat to the operation of the facilities or the good name of MacEwan. Where there is substantiated abuse of computing privileges, MacEwan will consider the removal of your access to facilities in balance between the threat perceived to the community and the inconvenience you will face. In the event that you access to any or all computing facilities is removed, MacEwan will inform you of the options available to you to have that access reinstated.
MacEwan will treat your data and programs as both private and confidential and will not examine your information without just cause or due process, nor disclose that information to a third party unless it is for use in a disciplinary or criminal investigation.
MacEwan will not normally monitor individual usage of any general computing facility, although all usage of a general facility may be monitored to enable accurate auditing. However, MacEwan reserves the right to monitor and record the usage of any facility if threatening or abusive behaviour has been reported and MacEwan has the right to use information gained in this way in disciplinary or criminal proceedings.
To acknowledge the right of others to privacy, you agree to stay within the limits of your authorization to use the facilities provided for your use, to copy information only from pre-authorized sources, and never to delete or change information without the permission from its holder.
Never consider electronic communications either private or secure. Remember that electronic mail messages can be saved indefinitely on the receiving computer, copies can be easily made and forwarded to others either electronically or on paper, and that messages sent to non-existing or incorrect usernames are not returned directly to you but are delivered to a person designated as the postmaster for either the remote site or MacEwan.
Ethical Use of Facilities
You will refrain from illegal activity, including software piracy or unauthorized profit-making activities using MacEwan resources.
You will be sensitive to the public nature of shared facilities and take care not to display on screens in such public locations images, sounds, or messages which could create an atmosphere of discomfort or harassment for others. You will refrain from transmitting to others in any location inappropriate images, sounds, or messages which might reasonably be considered harassing.
Electronic mail is a personal medium; it represents a conversation between you and another user. As such, MacEwan will not attempt to monitor or regulate the content of your electronic mail. Notwithstanding this, within the broad context of free academic discussion and debate, communications between members of the MacEwan community are expected to reflect high ethical standards and mutual respect and civility. It makes no difference whether the communication medium is face-to-face oral exchange or a local or a national computer network. The use of obscene, racist, or sexist language, for example, clearly violates the ethical standards of the MacEwan community and is as inappropriate for computer-mediated communications as it is for other forms of MacEwan discourse.
Security and Integrity
MacEwan University is responsible for operating the computing facilities it provides in a manner that offers you and others security and integrity of computing.
MacEwan reserves the right to inspect, copy, remove, or otherwise alter data files, system resources, or user files in the regular conduct of its duty to maintain efficient and well-run computing facilities, or in the conduct of investigation into the suspected misuse of these facilities.
Entry into a system, including the network system, by individuals not specifically authorized shall be viewed as trespass. Attempts to circumvent the protective mechanisms of any MacEwan system shall be considered attempted theft or trespass. Deliberate attempts to degrade system performance or capability, or attempts to damage systems, software, or intellectual property of others shall be viewed as criminal activity. Irresponsible use (that which needlessly affects the work of others) will be treated as mischief.
Investigation of Abuses of Computing Privileges
System administrators of Information and Technology Services have the responsibility to take remedial action in the case of possible abuse of computing privileges. Nothing in this policy diminishes that responsibility and system administrators, with the approval of their supervisor and with due regard for the right of your privacy and the confidentiality of your data, have the right to disable or modify your computer access privileges, examine files, passwords, accounting information, printouts, tapes, and any other material which may aid in an investigation of possible abuse. Whenever possible, your co-operation and agreement will be sought in advance.
Investigation into suspected violation of this policy will be governed by the same regulations as other investigations on campus. For example, where academic offenses such as plagiarism or professional misconduct involve the use of computing facilities, the same faculty officers involved in a more traditional case will be involved in the computer-based case with computer specialists likely being used as resources.
This policy has been drafted and approved under the authority of the CIO, Information and Technology Services. Any questions regarding the application or interpretation of these Conditions of Use should be directed to Information and Technology Services.