Skip to main content

Copyright Infringement Notification

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998 (DMCA) requires organizations, that wish to limit their liabilities for the activities of the users of their networks and systems, to follow certain specific guidelines. A key part of these guidelines is the naming of an Interim Designated DMCA Agent to receive and handle all complaints alleging copyright infringement. The VU DMCA Agent follows a very specific course of action as detailed in Title II of the Act. This part of the Act is known as the "Online Copyright Infringement Limitation Act." Click here to read.

The Interim Designated DMCA Agent is available through E-Mail at

and by phone at

1-615-343-3494 (Voice) and 1-615-343-1605 (Fax)

The address for US Postal mail or other mailings such as overnight services is as follows:

DMCA Agent / VUIT 
Vanderbilt University 
1231 18th Avenue South 
143 Hill Center / PD Box 34 
Nashville, Tennessee 37212

Contents of Notice

The DMCA requires that all notices of alleged copyright infringement be in writing. For Vanderbilt to act on your notice, you must be authorized to enforce the copyrights that you allege have been infringed. When informing the University of an alleged copyright infringement, you should:

  1. Identify the copyrighted work that allegedly has been infringed. If multiple copyrighted works at a single online site are involved, please provide a representative list of such works on that site.
  2. Describe the material that is claimed to be infringing and provide sufficient information to permit Vanderbilt to locate that material.
  3. Provide your contact information, including an address, telephone number, and, if available, an e-mail address.
  4. Certify or include a statement that you have a good faith belief that the use of the copyright-protected material in the manner complained of is not authorized by the copyright owner, the owner’ agent, or law.
  5. Certify that the information that you have provided Vanderbilt is accurate. You should attest under penalty of perjury that you are authorized to enforce the copyrights that you allege have been infringed.
  6. Include your physical or electronic signature.

The University may not be able to act on your complaint promptly or at all if you do not provide this information.

US Copyright Law and Vanderbilt University Policy

Machine owners who receive a copyright complaint on the Vanderbilt network will lose their network connection. The machine's owner is required to contact the Interim Designated DMCA Agent to address the complaint and restore the network connection. The machine's owner is also referred to Vanderbilt’s Acceptable Use Policy and generally made aware of copyright issues. Offenders will be referred to Student Conduct and Academic Integrity and/or their immediate supervisors. Severe or repeat offenders may be subject to discipline.

Counter Notice

The machine's owner may send VU's DMCA a written statement that the removal or disabling of access was based on a mistake or misidentification. This counter notification must contain

  1. A physical or electronic signature of the subscriber.
  2. Identification of the material that has been removed or to which access has been disabled and the location at which the material appeared before it was removed or access to it was disabled.
  3. A statement under penalty of perjury that the subscriber has a good faith belief that the material was removed or disabled as a result of mistake or misidentification of the material to be removed or disabled.
  4. The subscriber's name, address, and telephone number, and a statement that the subscriber consents to the jurisdiction of Federal District Court for the judicial district in which the address is located, or if the subscriber's address is outside of the United States, for any judicial district in which the service provider may be found, and that the subscriber will accept service of process from the person who provided notification or is an agent of such person.

The VU DMCA will forward the counter notice to the person who complained of the infringement. The communication will indicate that the removed material or disabled access will be restored in no less than 10 business days and no more than 14 business days from receipt of the counter notice unless the person who complained of the infringement notifies VU's DMCA that the complainant has filed a court action to restrain the machine's owner from the infringing activity that was the subject of the original notice.