Acceptable Use

Introduction

1.0 Purpose of Information Technology Resources

1.1 Overview

1.2 Audience

1.3 Violations, Reporting Violations or Clarifying Compliance

1.5 General Restrictions

2.0 Who May Have a Web Page

3.0 Administration of ETSU Home Page and Main Servers

4.0 Web Page Layout Requirements

4.5.1 ADA Compliance

5.0 Personal Pages

6.0 Registration and Content

7.0 Use of Official Academic Policy Documents on the Web


8.0 Useless Duplication

9.0 Student Organizations

10.0 Web Policy Subcommittee of the ITGC




Introduction
Primary audience: All
Active since: August 2000 

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Int roduction

East Tennessee State University (ETSU) provides access to the World Wide Web (Web) and information technology resources to enhance and support the educational mission of the university. It is the policy of ETSU to provide and maintain access for its community to local, national and international sources of information and to provide an atmosphere that encourages the free exchange of ideas and sharing of information. Access to this environment and the university's information technology resources is a privilege and must be treated with the highest standard of ethics.

The university expects all members of the community to use computing and information technology resources in a responsible manner, respecting the public trust through which these resources have been provided, the rights and privacy of others, the integrity of facilities and controls, and all pertinent laws and university policies and standards.

This policy outlines the standards for acceptable use of university computing and information technology resources. This policy applies to all users of ETSU computing and information technology resources, including faculty, staff, students, guests, external individuals or organizations and individuals accessing external network services, such as the Internet, via university facilities. Preserving the access to information resources is a community effort that requires each member to act responsibly and guard against abuses. Therefore, both the community as a whole and each individual user have an obligation to abide by these standards of acceptable and ethical use.
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1.0 Purpose of Information Technology Resources
Primary audience: All
Active since: August 2000
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The primary purpose of East Tennessee State University's information technology resources is to enhance and support the educational mission of the university. Access to ETSU's technology resources is a privilege granted to university students, faculty, staff, and approved guests. These resources include hardware, software, computer accounts and local area networks, as well as connections to other computer networks via the Internet. Everyone using these resources is responsible for using them in an effective, ethical and lawful manner. 

All users must refrain from the following activities:

Using computing facilities to violate any university policy or regulation, or federal, state or local law;

Entering, without authorization, any account to use, read, transfer or change the contents in any way;

Impersonating or misrepresenting another individual's computer account or e-mail username; 

Granting another individual access to your computer account;

Using computing resources to interfere with the work of other students, faculty or university officials;

Using computing facilities to send obscene, abusive, threatening, defamatory, or harassing messages;

Using computing resources to interfere with the normal operation of university computing systems and connected networks including, but not limited to, introducing viruses, flooding the network with messages, sending chain letters, or unfairly monopolizing resources that results in the exclusion of others;

Using university computing resources for profit or commercial purposes.

Intentional failure to comply with this policy will result in disciplinary action, which may include suspension of user privileges, suspension or expulsion from ETSU, or termination of university employment. In addition, violations may result in referral for prosecution by local, state or federal authorities.
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1.1 Overview
Primary audience: All
Last modified or reviewed: August 2000

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ETSU encourages its units (colleges, schools, divisions, departments, centers, organizations, etc.) and its individual account holders to participate in the World Wide Web (Web), not only by using it as a resource, but also by creating their own Web pages. As with any work undertaken at ETSU, creating and maintaining Web pages should be performed with pride and should reflect favorably upon both ETSU and the page authors. These pages will be seen by Web users the world over.

ETSU must obey laws and governing body regulations, create the most comfortable environment for the greatest number of university members, project a positive image, and communicate effectively. For these reasons, ETSU has instituted this Web Policy to govern the use of its Web resources. This acceptable use policy is a living document-the policies here will be amended and supplemented as needed.
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1.2 Audience
Primary audience: All
Active since: August 2000

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ETSU Web policies apply to all university account holders. However, specific policies may target distinct subsets of the university community. For this reason, a "Primary Audience" (Student, Academic Departments, Administrative Departments, All, etc.) is identified in each individual policy. This identification is intended mainly as a convenience -- a way of flagging the groups that should be most concerned with a particular policy. However, all policies apply to all university page authors and owners.
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1.3 Reporting Violations or Clarifying Compliance
Primary audience: All
Active since: August 2000

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If it comes to the university's attention that a Web page violates any of its policies, the Web Manager or author responsible for the page will be notified and asked to remedy the problem. If the problem is not remedied, the university will sever the link between the page and ETSU home pages. In some instances, this action may include severing the complete unit link.

Depending on the nature and severity of the violation, ETSU may be required to take disciplinary measures, including suspending or withdrawing computing privileges. It may even take legal action, especially to recover any expenses incurred as a result of the violation.

1.4 Reporting Violations or Clarifying Compliance

If you wish to report a page that violates ETSU's Web policies, or if you need interpretations regarding compliance, contact Mark Bragg, Client Support Services, Office of Information Technology, Box 70558, Johnson City, TN 37614; telephone (423) 439-7068; or e-mail . Mark Bragg will refer violations to the appropriate university official.
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1.5 General Restrictions
Primary audience: All
Active since: August 2000

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General Restrictions

These restrictions apply to all ETSU Web pages and their use.

The content of Web pages must comply with both East Tennessee State University policies and State of Tennessee policies and laws on acceptable computing use.

Both ETSU and the State of Tennessee have policies, procedures, standards, and guidelines that govern the use of the state's computing resources. ETSU's Web policies augment this existing policy body as well as address issues peculiar to the Web medium. ETSU page authors should be aware of the larger policy sources and realize that these policies are in effect. Some sources of these policies are:

State of Tennessee Internet Acceptable Use Policy

Information Technology Responsible Use Policy

TECnet's Acceptable Use Policy

ETSU's Policies and Procedures

ETSU's Policy for Acceptable Use of Information Technology Resources

ETSU's Student Handbook

ETSU's How to Put Your Course on the Internet ( http://de.etsu.edu/fac_template.htm )

Copyrighted material must not appear on any Web page without the permission of and an acknowledgment to the copyright holder. (See U. S. Copyright Law and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.)

Images/Recordings - It is especially tempting to copy images or record favorite music selections and incorporate them into a Web page. However, such images and recordings are usually copyrighted and cannot be used without the permission of the copyright holder. Even backgrounds are often copyrighted. When downloading, recording, or scanning images and sounds, page authors must determine whether they are free or available for a fee, or whether expressed permission is required before they can be used.

Plagiarism - The Web gives its users access to a wealth of information and makes it very easy to copy and save such information. However, authors who copy what others have written or created and present such material as their own rather than giving proper citation are in violation of ETSU policy regarding plagiarism.

Only ETSU students, faculty, staff and approved guests may create and store Web pages through and on university resources, and they may do so only for ETSU business or educational purposes.

Commercial Use - The Web resources made available to the ETSU community are intended for educational or administrative use, not for personal gain. Web pages should not be used to advertise personal services for hire or belongings for sale. Further, Web pages cannot be used to provide "billboard" space for advertisements. However, students are encouraged to post their personal resumes.

Web browsing via equipment located on ETSU property should be limited to university-related purposes.

Access to ETSU-supported computing is granted contingent on that access not being misused. Users must practice good and responsible cyber-citizenship.

Use of East Tennessee State University's seal and logo must be in accordance with East Tennessee State University's policy Guidelines for a Consistent Visual Image and is restricted to the university's home page and the Web pages that are immediately linked to the home page (i.e., those pages that have hyperlink on the home page). ETSU's logo is also a trademark and can be used only with the university's permission.

East Tennessee State University's policy, Guidelines for a Consistent Visual Image, is a uniform statement of policy describing the proper use of East Tennessee State University's seal, logo, colors, flag and mascots.
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2.0 Who May Have a Web Page
Primary audience: All
Active since: August 2000
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2.1 Policy Statement

East Tennessee State University encourages all colleges, schools, departments, officially recognized student organizations, students, faculty, staff, and approved guests to use university resources for accessing information on the Web and for creating their own Web pages. All authorized ETSU computing account holders are permitted to create Web pages using the university's technology resources.

2.2 Related Policies

Two related policies are Personal Pages and Registration of Web Pages and Responsibility for Content. These two policies address the responsibilities of page developers and ETSUs classification of Web pages, respectively.
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3.0 Administration of ETSU Home Page and Main Servers
Primary audience: All
Active since: August 2000

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Policy Statement

The ETSU Office of University Relations is responsible for determining the appearance of the ETSU home page. This office, in consultation with the OIT Web manager, initiates any redesigns or revisions of the page consistent with established ETSU Web Format Guidelines. University Relations determines the topics to be listed on the home page and cultivates and protects ETSU images on the Web.

The physical maintenance of the top tier ETSU Web pages is the responsibility of the Web manager in the Office of Information Technology (OIT). The OIT server administrators maintain the servers that contain most ETSU Web pages and many departmental and personal pages, although some colleges and departments maintain their own servers.
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4.0 Web Page Layout Requirements
Primary audience: All
Active since: August 2000

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4.1 Policy Statement

Pages linked to ETSU's Web site must adhere to a few specific layout requirements and regulations. These have been formulated to make navigation clear to Web visitors, to provide contact information, and to regulate the use of the university's logos and wordmarks. Because certain elements and regulations do not apply to all university Web pages, authors should conform to the requirements for university, college, school and department Web pages or the faculty, staff and student personal pages linked to official pages.

4.2 University, College, School and Department Web Pages

The following elements are required:

Name of unit

Contact information (This should include the department's mailing address, phone number, FAX number [if applicable], and e-mail address.)

Name and e-mail address of the site's Web manager (maintainer)

Date of last update

Use of an official symbol, logo or wordmark from a collection of university symbols created for Web use, or the words "East Tennessee State University"

A return link (This should be to what is logically the next highest page level. For example, a History Club page should have a return link to the History Department home page. The History Department home page should have a return link to the College of Arts and Sciences home page, and the Arts and Sciences page would have a return link to the university's home page. All college, school and division home pages should have return links to the university's home page.)

No copyright symbol may be attached to a college, school, unit, or departmental Web page. All publications produced by a state governmental agency or its employees in the course of official business are in the public domain.

4.3 Faculty, Staff, and Student Personal Pages Linked to Official Pages

The following elements are required:

Name of college, school, or department from which the page is linked

Name and e-mail address of the page's Web manager

Date of last update

A return link to the college/school/department

4.4 Why follow this policy?

Official pages that do not conform to these provisions will not be linked to the ETSU site (see Registration of Web Pages and Responsibility for Content ). Pages created before institution of this policy must be modified, if necessary, to adhere to these layout provisions. However, before a link is removed, units will be notified and advised to make the required changes. Failure to comply with these guidelines may result in removing a link from the top tier of the site. Before the link is cut, the responsible unit will be notified and advised that the site should be modified.

4.5 Related Issues

4.5.1 ADA Compliance

While there are as yet no federal regulations regarding development of Web pages to conform to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) accessibility standards, several Web sites offer insights regarding page flexibility and layout considerations. East Tennessee State University endorses these attempts:

World Wide Web Consortium Guidelines and WAI Page Author Guidelines

Center on Information Technology Accommodation

Unified Web Site Accessibility Guideline s

The Center for Applied Special Technology (CAST) maintains a Web site with many helpful resources, including an online tool (Bobby) that evaluates Web pages for compliance with accessibility guidelines.

4.5.2 Browser Compatibility

Page developers should bear in mind that visitors to their pages may be running different browsers or browser versions that may not have the same capabilities as those of the developer. If the campus is the primary or one of the primary audiences for a page, developers are especially encouraged to consult two sources before developing the page:

ETSU's Technology Standards, particularly the "Software" section; this identifies the browser(s) considered to be the university standard and thus given the highest level of support.

The OIT page, which identifies the version of the standard browser(s) currently available to the students in the computer labs.

4.6 Design Suggestions

Adhering to the layout policy ensures a degree of acceptability, but is no guarantee of a page's attractiveness or functionality. Suggestions on a variety of topics related to Web page design (colors, backgrounds, links, graphics, etc.) may be found at the Office of Information Technology Web site at http://www.etsu.edu/oit/ .

4.7 Publishing Assistance

Web managers and page developers may take advantage of the numerous training opportunities on and off campus to learn how to develop technical and design elements for Web pages. For specific technical assistance, please refer to the OIT Web site or contact the ETSU Help Desk in the Office of Information Technology, 9-4648 or . Top^


5.0 Personal Pages
Primary audience: Faculty, Staff, Students, Unit Heads
Active since: August 2000

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5.1 Policy Statement

Personal pages may be created by faculty, staff, and students and may contain personal information that features the interests, activities, and opinions of their creators. It must be clear, though, that the views and opinions expressed in personal pages are the sole responsibility of the page authors. East Tennessee State University does not accept responsibility for the contents of personal Web pages. Further, personal pages must not state or imply that ETSU has reviewed or approved the pages. Personal page authors must not give the impression that they are representing or making statements on behalf of ETSU or any unit of the university. Personal pages may not be registered with ETSU's Web Page Registry or linked to the top tier of the ETSU site.

A personal page may be either linked or freestanding. The head of a unit must approve the link from the unit's Web page to any personal page. Personal pages linked to unit pages must comply with any unit policies and requirements as well as university policies and procedures. Unit heads are responsible for ensuring that personal pages linked from their unit page comply with university policies and all relevant federal, state, and local statutes. Unit heads are responsible for removing links to personal pages found to be in violation of policies and statutes.

5.2 Why follow this policy?

Personal pages that do not comply with this policy may be removed from the ETSU Web site. Page authors who refuse to bring their pages into compliance may be prohibited from using computing resources to publish Web pages and may be liable for reimbursing ETSU for any costs associated with enforcing this policy.

5.3 Related Issues

If a personal page receives an unreasonable amount of traffic, such that the performance of the ETSU Web site as a whole is degraded, the page author may be asked to change the content of the page.

There are some programs that may make a page(s) act as a server. This kind of activity can severely affect the performance of the ETSU network. Since the ETSU network, servers, Web and desktop computers are intended for educational purposes, desktop computers should not be used as servers. Further, such use could overload ETSU systems and compromise network security. Top^


6.0 Registration and Content 
Primary audience: All
Active since: August 2000

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NOTE: The Web Page Registry is under development.

6.1 Policy Statement

Official ETSU units (colleges, schools, departments, offices, institutes, organizations, etc.) who wish to have their pages linked to the university's Web site alphabetical index must register their pages in the OIT Web Registry. Upon receipt of the registry information, University Relations will link authorized pages to either the alphabetical or categorical index. 

Units may request links to certain upper level pages; however, permission is granted on a case-by-case basis in consultation with the Web manager and University Relations. Student organization pages will not be linked until the Office of Student Life and Leadership verifies that the organization is an official one.

On the Registry page, page providers will be asked to complete an online form, providing the following information:

Unit Information

  • Unit/Organization Name

  • Supervisor's Name 

  • Supervisor's Title 

  • Supervisor's Campus Phone

  • Unit's E-mail Address 

Page/Site Web Manager Information

  • Web Manager Name
  • E-mail Address
  • Campus Phone

Site (Home Page) Information

  • Page Name
  • Page URL 

All Web page providers are responsible for the currency, legitimacy, legality, and appearance of their pages, and all Web providers must adhere to ETSU Web policies. Units are responsible not only for the content and appearance of their own pages, but for those linked personal pages that branch from their pages. They are also responsible for establishing standards for these personal pages. These standards may not nullify or conflict with ETSU standards.

6.2 Why follow this policy?

Registering Web pages through the ETSU registry assures that pages will be included in the ETSU alphabetical index. This comprehensive index is a dependable method for visitors to find the information they need. Pages not listed in the alphabetical index may be difficult to locate.
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7.0 Use of Official Academic Policy Documents on the Web
Primary audience: Academic departments
Active since: August 2000

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7.1 Policy Statement

Colleges, schools and departments are encouraged to maintain Web pages that offer helpful information to both current and prospective students, as well as other university and public audiences. Those who wish to include ETSU and program admission requirements, degree and course requirements, degree and course descriptions, and course offerings must do so by linking to the officially sanctioned Web versions of these university documents:

University catalogs 

The current Schedule of Classes

Colleges, schools, departments and units that link to official academic policy documents should also include the following notice on their Web sites:

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Notice

The information presented here is intended to help you answer any questions you might have about our admission and program requirements. However, both university and college, school, department or unit requirements are subject to change. In planning any course of study or degree program, you should consult your major advisor and the officially sanctioned versions of the ETSU documents listed below.

Though efforts will be made to keep the Web version (if applicable) of each document current, the hard copy of each is always updated first. Document hard copies are available from:

                        Undergraduate Bulletin, Admissions Office, Box 70731
                        Graduate Bulletin, Graduate Studies, Box 70720 
                        Schedule of Classes, 1st floor of Burgin E. Dossett Hall,                                                      Admissions or Registrar's Office

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7.2 Why follow this policy?

These documents should be the prime source for academic policy and procedure information given to current and prospective students. Serving up abridgments, abstracts, re-writes or unauthorized revisions of official statements of academic program policy documents may lead to inconsistency with THEC, TBR, ETSU or accreditation/licensure requirements. Potential exists for misinterpretation on the part of students because of typographical errors or mistakes in interpretation by those authoring the re-writes. Colleges, schools, departments and units should be certain that all information on their Web sites is consistent with the policies mentioned above. On policy matters, ETSU should speak with one clear voice.
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8.0 Useless Duplication
Primary audience: Faculty, Staff, Students, and Unit Heads
Active since: August 2000

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8.1 Policy Statement

Web publishers should publish only what they ought to maintain and what they can maintain.

What they ought to maintain

Page authors may want to supplement their own information with information on another site. Such information should be hyperlinked--not be copied or re-keyed. (Hyperlinking is one of the most useful features of the Web.) Authors should especially ask themselves, "Am I the ultimate source for, or 'owner' of, this supplemental information?" If the answer is "No," they must link to the information.

What they can maintain.

Out-of-date Web sites can be frustrating for visitors and may present incorrect or misleading information. Limit the information on your Web site to that which you can update and maintain.

8.2 Why follow this policy?

By following this policy, page owners:

Avoid the risk of publishing incorrect, misleading, or erroneous information. Duplicating information risks committing typographical errors or misinterpreting the information and passing on the misinterpretations. Also, information which page owners duplicate, but do not "own," may become out-of-date without their knowledge.

Conserve space regardless of the server housing the owner's files; the owner wastes space by needlessly reproducing information.

8.3 Related Issues

Readers should also see Use of Official Academic Policy Documents on the Web. This policy specifically addresses the use of such authoritative documents as the bulletins and the Schedule of Classes by ETSU departments and contains disclaimer information which departments must use when linking to these documents.
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9.0 Student Organizations
Primary audience: All
Active since: January 2001

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9.1 Policy Statement

Student organizations are encouraged to maintain Web pages that provide helpful information to both current and prospective students, as well as other campus and public audiences. Student organization files will reside in the http://studentorgs.etsu.edu/ and must be updated at least annually. Student Organization Resource Center (SORC) will confirm that the organization is currently registered before the student organization is linked to the Student Organizations Web site. Student organizations that are not registered with Student Organization Resource Center will not be granted space on the student server.

This policy outlines specific procedures for students to:

  • Register their organization and Web site with SORC 
  • Assure their organization Web pages comply with ETSU minimum standards for student Web pages 
  • Obtain space on the ETSU Web server
  • Obtain an e-mail account specifically for their student organization

9.2 Register your organization and Web site with the Office of Student Organization Resource Center

Students register with SORC each year in the fall, during the annual student organization registration period. At that time organizations complete the Student Organization Yearly Registration and Update form to submit their organization Web site and assign the individual responsible for maintaining the Web page. Only student organizations registered with SORC will be linked from the Student Organization Web site.

9.3 Comply with minimum standards for student organization Web pages

Please follow these steps to assure your organization Web pages comply with ETSU minimum standards.

1. The date of the last update and contact information must be on the default home page. Contact information can be either the student organization e-mail address or the e-mail address of the individual in charge of maintaining the Web page.

2. Organizations must define the purpose and audience of their page; this information should be listed on the default home page.

3. Student organization information must be current. 

When SORC is notified that a student organization Web page is outdated for more than one academic year, the organization has two weeks to bring their site into compliance. Pages that are not brought into compliance will be unlinked to the SORC Web page and a recommendation sent for removal from the server. 

4. If a complaint is received, SORCmay sever the link to the organization without notice. The link will remain severed until the complaint is resolved. Organizations that fail to bring their pages into compliance may be prohibited from using computing resources to publish Web pages. Abuse of the compliance may result in charges brought through the campus judicial system.

5. Student organization Web pages must conform to all other guidelines outlined in this policy, including those outlined in the ETSU Web Page Policy ( www.etsu.edu/oit/ppp/aup/ ). Pages created before adoption of the Web page registration procedure must be modified, if necessary, to adhere to the layout provision.

9.4 Specific design guidelines for student organization Web pages:

  1. Limit the size and number of graphic images to optimize download time.
  2. Design the page for 800 x 600 viewing.
  3. Avoid sound and video clips.
  4. Keep links to within three clicks of the main page.

9.5 Obtain space on the ETSU Web server 

Student organizations must complete the Computer Account Request For in order to obtain space on the student server. These forms are available in the Office of Information Technology, 309 Dossett Hall. The Office of Student Organization Resource Center and the student organization advisor must sign the form before it is routed to the Office of Information Technology (OIT). The signed form must be delivered to OIT, 309 Dossett Hall, before the space is assigned.

9.6 Obtain an e-mail account for your organization

Officially recognized student organizations are eligible to receive an e-mail address specifically for their organization. Organizations who qualify for an e-mail account may request their account on the Computer Account Request Form at the same time they request Web space.

Registered student organizations are encouraged to use individual student member e-mail addresses to communicate among the membership. If a student organization establishes an approved Web page on the ETSU Web site, a specific student member and e-mail address should be included in the organization contact information.

If warranted by the scope of its services, a registered student organization may apply for an e-mail account in the name of the organization itself.

If a registered student organization establishes an approved Web site, the organization's e-mail address may appear on its pages.

Organizations must renew their e-mail account each year at the same time they register their organization with SORC. 

9.7 Why follow this policy?

Registering Web pages with SORC assures that the organization will be included on the Student Organization Resource Center student organization alphabetical index. This comprehensive index is a dependable method for visitors to the Web site to find information about your organization.
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10.0 Web Steering Committee
Primary audience: All
Active since: February 2003

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10.1 Charge to the Web Steering Committee

The Charge of the Committee is as follows:

  1. Identify and review policy areas related to the use of the web at ETSU;
  2. Draft new policies as needed and submit them to the Information Technology Governance Committee (ITGC) for review and approval (this would cover any new TBR guidelines that need to be reviewed);
  3. Develop a web strategic plan for ETSU as outlined in the IT Strategic Plan, and report to the ITGC by April, 2003 (the implementation plan can follow later); and
  4. Work with the Web Development Committee to promote the efforts of that group/committee.

10.2 Web Policy Committee Membership

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