Bard College Student Handbook

Campus Computing

Bard provides electronic information systems for the campus community in order to support the educational mission of the College. These systems serve important needs for our faculty, staff, and students. Electronic mail messages, like telephone and paper mail communications, are private and privileged exchanges deserving protection and security. Bard views with most serious concern any fraudulent action or any violation of security related to electronic communications and is prepared to take appropriate corrective and punitive actions in response to such behavior.

As citizens of the Bard College community we bear the responsibility to avoid libel, undocumented allegations, and attacks on personal integrity. The same standards of civil discourse and etiquette that govern our face-to-face interactions must apply to online communications including: composing, sending, or redistributing electronic mail or voice messages, and creating or publishing postings online (including images, message boards, and social network sites such as Facebook or Twitter).

With today’s technology messages are disseminated more rapidly and more widely than ever before; a single damaging statement is likely to “live” for years online. We all then must also be aware of and responsible for the “life” of our comments and messages beyond the original posting.

The College expects that the community of people who use electronic information resources will do nothing in that action that infringes upon the rights or safety of others on this campus or elsewhere and will not apply campus information systems in any fraudulent ways.

Thus, all users agree to the following:

1. College computer facilities will not be used for activities that are in violation of campus, local, state, or federal rules and laws. This includes:

  • Copyright infringement
  • Cheating
  • Theft
  • Vandalism
  • Software piracy (the unauthorized duplication or use of copyrighted software)
  • Media piracy (the unauthorized duplication and distribution of copyrighted text, still image, video, and audio files, e.g. MP3)
  • Sending messages that encourage or promote violation of the above or other College, local, state, or federal regulations

2. Use of College computer facilities for commercial purposes or personal profit is forbidden with the exception of the publication of scholarly works which may incidentally provide revenues to the author(s).

3. Users will respect an individual’s right to privacy and freedom of expression and will not read, copy, or print material written by others that is not intended for public inspection. Inappropriate use includes:

  • Sending messages in such a way that makes them appear as though they originated from a different person or that deliberately misrepresent yourself or your authority
  • Sending messages that are severely abusive or threaten an individual’s safety or for sexual, ethnic, religious, minority, or other harassment
  • Sending or forwarding chain letters
  • Deliberately flooding a user’s mailbox with automatically generated mail
  • Sending mail that is deliberately designed to interfere with proper mail delivery or access
  • Attempting to gain access to another person’s files regardless of the intent or result
  • Broadcasting messages to large numbers of recipients without regard to the relevance of the material
  • Sending messages or engaging in other conduct intended to suppress or disrupt debate
  • Sending messages that are designed to interfere with normal system operation

4. Users will refrain from any activity that threatens the integrity of the computer system at Bard. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • Modification of system services and utilities;
  • Permitting others to access College resources from outside of Bard;
  • Installing any hardware or software that threatens the integrity of the overall campus network, “hacking,” or other sabotage;
  • Activities that interfere with public access to computer resources.

5. Every user is personally responsible for the integrity of the account assigned to that individual. Usernames are not transferable to other users or publicly distributable without prior authorization from Bard Information Technology.

Violations of these rules will be reported to the appropriate campus judicial body. Any punitive actions will be determined by that body and could include disconnection from the campus network.