User-Contributed Content in JMU Libraries Systems

Date Effective: June 26, 2017

Policy Contact: Director of Technology
Reviewed and approved by Susan Wheeler, University Counsel


JMU Libraries provides several systems where the JMU community can upload and describe digital objects. To ensure the effective and efficient use of JMU resources, the Libraries has policies and guidelines related to systems containing user-contributed content. As of June 13, 2017, this policy applies to the Libraries’ video repository, image repository, digital exhibit, and web publishing services (e.g., WordPress, Omeka, etc.), referred to as “the Systems.”

Exceptions to these policies and guidelines may be discussed by contacting

These policies and guidelines may be revised at any time in order to respond to legal or technological changes, business needs of JMU, and/or to improve services to user communities. Every effort will be made to update users of the systems.

Purpose Statements


JMUtube was an online platform for the faculty and staff of JMU to store and deliver video and presentations. JMUTube was retired June 2018.


MDID is an image repository used at JMU to discover and present images in a wide variety of learning spaces.


illumira is an online platform for the faculty and staff of JMU to deliver video for instructional purposes.

Canvas Studio

Canvas Studio is a communication tool that allows instructors and students to actively collaborate through video and audio media.


JMU Libraries’ WordPress installation is a web publishing platform for materials that support teaching, learning, and scholarship.


JMU Libraries’ Omeka installation provides virtual space for the curation of digital object collections and exhibits related to the mission of JMU that have the potential for lasting value to scholarly communities.


PressbooksEDU is an online platform ideal for publishing openly licensed teaching, learning, and scholarship materials as an e-book.



“System Administrators” refers to the Libraries’ staff with primary responsibility for the system(s), as specified in Technology’s internal documentation.

“Site Owner” refers to a member of the JMU community who is responsible for a collection of digital objects on a Libraries system, any associated web sites on an Libraries systems, or both.

Acceptable Content

Users of the systems acknowledge awareness of and compliance with JMU Policy 1107 (Intellectual Property). This policy is subordinate to Policy 1107.

Each content contributor represents that uploaded content does not, to the best of his/her knowledge, infringe upon any third-party’s copyright. If the content contains material for which the contributor does not hold copyright, the contributor represents that he/she has obtained permission of the copyright holder(s) or their agent(s) to upload the material; or the copyright has expired by operation of law; or the material is open source material; or the content contributor has secured a determination that the proposed use of the copyrighted material to be uploaded represents fair use of the copyrighted work, and that such third-party material is clearly identified and acknowledged within the text or content of the submission. In the event of a subsequent dispute over the copyrights to material contained in this submission, the content contributor agrees to indemnify and hold harmless JMU and its employees or agents for any uses of the material uploaded by the content contributor.

If copyright is not otherwise held by a third party, material uploaded by the content contributor shall be licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

By uploading any content, the content contributor grants to James Madison University Libraries at James Madison University (JMU) the non-exclusive right to reproduce and distribute content to appropriate user group(s) as assigned using system functions, as well as the right to migrate or convert the submission, without alteration of content, to any medium or format for the purpose of preservation or continued distribution. The content contributor agrees that James Madison University may keep more than one copy of the content for purposes of security, back-up, and preservation.

In the event a request to take down material is received, either by the site owner or the system administrator, the site owner and system administrator will inform the other party of the receipt of the request. The site owner is responsible for responding to the request as well as resolving the request, if possible. Final determination of the outcome of the request will be completed within 60 days of receipt of the request, and the site owner and system administrator will be included on all correspondence with the requestor.

You agree not to upload, post, or otherwise make available any content that is unlawful, harmful, threatening, abusive, harassing, defamatory, libelous, hateful, or that is racially, ethnically, or otherwise objectionable, or that violates an individual’s privacy rights. JMU Libraries reserves the right to remove content in violation of this agreement from JMU Libraries’ platforms.

Storage and Retention

The amount of storage space allocated to individual JMU users may be subject to restrictions based on available capacity and system performance.

System administrators will review content within the Systems annually for level of contributor account activity and storage space concerns.

  • Significant periods of inactivity or a lack of indication of intent to fulfill the content contributor duties will trigger restrictions of upload privileges and notification of potential removal of content from repository for sites. Generally, a significant period is considered 24 months from last activity.
  • If content contributors have not logged in or responded to system administrators within 18 months, and objects are receiving little or no use according to server log access files, the content may be removed at the system administrators’ discretion.
  • Removed content will be archived for a period of 1 year from online system removal. If no further response has been obtained from the content contributor, the content will be considered abandoned and JMU Libraries may delete it from all systems.

Systems vary greatly in the ways content can be downloaded and exported. JMU Libraries makes no guarantees about the format(s) or methods available to return content to users other than the explicit functionalities of each system. Users are advised to save source files and local copies of materials for which they hold copyright or copyright permission.

Group Accounts

Historically system limitations have prompted JMU Libraries system administrators to create shared accounts where multiple individuals share a username and password for the purpose of providing a group of users with a common set of access parameters (e.g. access to a certain grouping of digital objects). Although JMU Libraries is willing to consider such requests on a case-by-case basis, such an approach entails security and account maintenance concerns. Therefore, JMU Libraries will seek systems and strategies that support the use of eID and password as the sole method of system access. Please contact if you identify a purpose for a group account that is not supported by the use of eID and password.


Content contributors will:

  • Be responsible for upholding copyright law as described in “Acceptable Content” section.
  • Respond to requests by copyright holders to remove content in accordance with established policies and procedures, including informing system administrators of the request and disposition of the request.
  • Manage the digital objects uploaded, including deleting / removing content no longer used.
  • Populate the metadata fields with a specified minimum of information necessary to establish content ownership and promote online discovery. Refer to Appendix: Required Metadata Fields for User-Contributed Content Systems more information.
  • Monitor their JMU email address for information related to the Systems.
  • If content contributors leave the university, they will advise system administrators on whether content can be deleted, will be transferred to another JMU employee, etc.
  • Respond to requests for information from system administrators in a timely manner. Participate in minor content maintenance activities as required for successful administration of a shared-space system.
  • Assume full responsibility for the content contributed, and indemnify JMU, including JMU Libraries, from any claims, damages, or legal actions arising from the content contributed.
  • Hold JMU, including JMU Libraries, harmless for any damages, costs, or losses whatsoever arising in any circumstances from these services, including damages arising from the breakdown of technologies employed and difficulties in access.
  • For WordPress and Omeka, provide information about site / project ownership as per Appendix: Project Charters.

JMU Libraries will:

  • In partnership with JMU IT, strive to provide continuous access to the system and its contents, with the exception of unforeseen technical difficulties and routine maintenance.
  • Provide password-protected access to the system to allow users to manage content.
  • Back up metadata and digital objects in accordance with established Libraries policies and procedures based on industry best practices.
  • Give advance notice of maintenance and system upgrades via email and/or through the system interface.
  • Strive to support content contributors’ needs related to exporting/downloading content, pending system limitations.

Requests for removal of content by the system administrators must be in written form and sent via email ( or postal mail to:

The Hub 
Attn: Libraries Technology
MSC 1704
James Madison University
771 Duke Drive
Harrisonburg, VA 22807

Duties related to group (departmental) accounts (MDID and JMUTube Only)

JMU Libraries will be striving to curtail the use of group accounts by finding other ways of supporting common access needs. As long as systems have accounts where a username/password is shared among multiple people), these provisions apply:

  • Group accounts must have a contact person with an active eID.
  • The contact person is responsible for notifying system administrators of persons who should have access to the account.
  • Group accounts will be reviewed annually with the contact person to determine whether they are still needed.
  • If the contact person cannot be reached, other involved persons will be contacted. JMU Libraries will attempt to identify another person in the group to assume the role of contact person. If no person is willing to take ownership of the account, the account will be removed.
  • If a group account becomes inactive, but has contributed content that is being actively used by others on the system, JMU Libraries may assign a Libraries employee to serve as the departmental account contact person.

Appendix: Required Metadata Fields for User-Contributed Content Systems

Under Development

Appendix: Project Charters (WordPress and Omeka Only)

JMU users wishing to use JMU Libraries’ Omeka or WordPress services will complete a project charter identifying:

  • The site owner (a person with an active eID).
  • Associated department(s) who might have an interest in the site.
  • The anticipated lifecycle of the project. For example, it might be desirable for student projects to be retired a certain date after a class has ended.
  • Internal and external stakeholders.

System Administrators will review the project charter and the content within the Systems annually with the site owner / contact person. If the site owner / contact person cannot be reached, other involved persons will be contacted. JMU Libraries will attempt to identify other stakeholders to assume the role of contact person. If no contact person is willing to take ownership of the project, the project may be removed at the discretion of the administrators.