Unauthorized Sale of Course Notes

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From: Campus Provost/Executive Vice Chancellor <cpevc@ucsc.edu>
Date: Wed, Dec 1, 2010 at 10:42 AM
Subject: Unauthorized sale of course notes
To:


December 1, 2010

To: UCSC Faculty
Fr: Mark Cioc, Interim Vice Provost and Dean of Undergraduate Education
Re: Unauthorized sale of course notes

Colleagues:

The issue of students buying and selling lecture notes is an issue throughout the UC system. I write to share with you campus and system-wide actions to inform students about policies and laws that prohibit the commercialization of class notes and to stop companies from enticing students (sometimes deviously) to violate these prohibitions.

Campus Message
The EVC sent a message to all undergraduates [pasted below] on my behalf alerting them that students may be disciplined for selling, preparing, or distributing course lecture notes for any commercial purpose, whether or not the student himself or herself took the notes. The unauthorized sale of lecture notes is a violation of campus policies and state law and may constitute copyright infringement. Students were reminded that the campus Disability Resource Center provides a notetaking service for eligible students with disabilities and were provided info on this service. The actual message follows for your information.

Please contact Doug Zuidema, Director of Judicial Affairs, if you believe that a student has violated campus policies. His contact information is dzuidema@ucsc.edu or 459-4447.

It has been suggested that faculty include this information in the syllabus for future courses. I will draft sample language and forward it to faculty prior to campus closure which may be useful for courses taught in the spring.

Message from Counsel
At the request of Campus Counsel from multiple UC campuses, including UCSC, Senior University Counsel in the Office of the President sent a “cease and desist” letter to the CEO of Notehall.com, one of the companies we believe is soliciting UC students to take notes during classroom presentations for pay, presumably so that the company can further resell them.

Coursehero.com is another company which may obtain materials from students for resale, including past exams. Their practices may violate an instructor's copyrighted material. Since instructors own copyright in their course materials under UC's Policy on Ownership of Course Materials, UC (or UCSC) is not in a position to send “cease and desist” letters on the instructor's behalf.  However, the Office of the President is developing a template for instructors to use in such cases. Please contact the Officeof Campus Counsel at (831) 459-1848 for help in responding appropriately if you learn that your copyrighted course material has been bought or sold.

I hope this information is helpful.


Message to undergraduates (from above link):
http://news.ucsc.edu/2010/11/course-notes-notehall.html

Unauthorized sale of course notes

To: UCSC Undergraduates

From: Mark Cioc, Interim Vice Provost and Dean of Undergraduate Education

November 30, 2010

It has come to our attention that students may mistakenly believe that UCSC is partnered with the company Notehall.com.  Please be advised that the campus is not affiliated in any way with Notehall.com or its related site mynotejob.com [URL is now invalid].

Please note that students may be disciplined for selling, preparing, or distributing course lecture notes for any commercial purpose, whether or not the student himself or herself took the notes.  The unauthorized sale of lecture notes (and handouts, readers or other course materials) is a violation of campus policies (Student Judicial Handbook, sections 102.17 and 102.018). Judicial action for violating campus policies may include disciplinary probation, suspension, or dismissal, which may have serious effects on your academic careers. The sale of classroom notes is also a violation of state law (Cal. Educ. Code, section 66450) and may be associated with civil penalties of up to $25,000 depending on the number of offenses.  It may also constitute copyright infringement subject to legal action.

Please do not confuse Notehall.com with the note taker program affiliated with the campus' Disability Resource Center (DRC). The DRC hires note takers for eligible students with disabilities who need notes for a specific class. See http://drc.ucsc.edu/services/notetakers.html [link updated] for more information.  Notehall.com is in no way affiliated with the DRC.

Thank you for your attention.


Rev. March 2014