Respect for the intellectual work and property of others is vital to the mission of higher education. This principle applies to works of all authors and publishers in all the media, including the labor and creativity resulting in computer software. It e ncompasses respect for the right to acknowledgment and the right to determine the form, manner, and terms of publication and distribution.
Unauthorized copying of software is illegal and may force the University as well as individuals to incur legal liability. The United States Copyright Law protects software authors and publishers in much the same manner as patent law protects inventors. Unauthorized copying of software, including programs, applications, data bases and code, deprives developers of a fair return for their work, may result in increased prices, may reduce the level of future support and enhancement available to the Universit y, and may inhibit the development of new software products.
Unless software has been placed in the public domain, the owner of a copyright holds exclusive right to the reproduction and distribution of his or her work. The purchaser of software generally purchases only a license to use the software on one machine. Most licenses do not permit copying although a licensee may generally make a backup or archival copy. Some institutional licenses permit copying for use on local area networks or on multiple machines, but such uses must be authorized in a license agree ment commonly called a site license, which might include a network license or a limited-use license.