RSS Icon Twitter icon Facebook icon

What is the Digital Millennium Copyright Act?

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998 amended U.S. copyright law to limit liability for an infrastructure provider (or "service provider") for information residing, at direction of a user, on a system or network that the service provider controls. The University in providing computers, storage, or network connection is a service provider. A University employee, student, or guest in providing content is a user.

The service provider claiming this limited liability must do several things:

  • The service provider must designate an agent to receive claims of copyright infringement, initiate take-down, receive counter-claims, and initiate restoration as appropriate.
  • The service provider must also inform users of policy that terminates service for infringements.
  • The service provider must register the DMCA agent with the U.S. Copyright Office.
  • The service provider must also identify this agent through "its service including on its website in a location accessible to the public." The University of Missouri requires each University of Missouri web server and other information servers liable to copyright concerns to list on the "front page" a link or reference to the central webpage identifying the University of Missouri DMCA agent. This central website will also listresources that will help University members with intellectual property issues.

Reviewed 2011-03-07.