Revised May 20, 1997
Reviewed by ITPC May 29, 1997

U-M Internet Publishing Policies, Guidelines, and Instructions


1.0 Introduction

The Internet and related communication technologies provide unprecedented capability for disseminating multimedia information resources and, therefore, offer enormous potential for the University of Michigan community to create, compile, and share information. Use of tools such as the World Wide Web (WWW) is growing rapidly and literally putting the capability for "publishing" in the hands of faculty, staff, students, units, and organizations.

The challenge for the University of Michigan community is to develop these Internet capabilities in the context of the institution's mission. This document outlines policies and recommended guidelines relevant to publication of information on the Internet, and in addition, specific policies and guidelines for the institution's official Internet site, the U-M Gateway. As the number and types of information resources on the Internet grow, standards and guidelines for the effective use of Internet technologies will help ensure that the institution can manage and appropriately exploit these tools and the institution's information assets.

Guidelines and policies for publishing information about the institution and its programs already exist at the University, as do policies related to the use of information technologies. The Office of Marketing Communications' Publications Guide ( covers guidelines (and, in some cases, requirements) for UM publications; these guidelines apply to Internet publishing as well as print media. Given the unique characteristics of the World wide Web and related Internet technologies as a publication medium, the policies and procedures described in this document call attention to the particular application of existing policies to the Internet environment.

2.0 The University's Internet Presence/Environment

Internet -accessible information made available through the University's information technology infrastructure (i.e., network, servers, etc.) is typically associated with the University of Michigan's Internet presence or environment either through explicitly stated association with University units or individuals or merely through association with the University's address or domain on the Internet (see section 3.2 related to domain names).

The large and growing number of resources which are associated with UM in some way is comprised of many different types of information resources, ranging from information associated with an individual or organization to more official information from schools and colleges.

The University of Michigan institutional homepage or "UM Gateway" ( is the official vehicle for disseminating University information on the Internet. Policies and practices related to the Gateway are described in Section 4.0 below.

3.0 University Policies Relevant to Internet Publishing

Existing University policies and state and federal laws are relevant to publishing or disseminating information via the Internet. Relevant university policies are listed below.

3.1 Proper Use

University policy governing the Proper Use of Information Resources, Information Technology, and Networks at the University of Michigan ( details the appropriate uses of institutional resources, including information, computing, and network resources. A related Guidelines for Implementing the Proper Use Policy of the University of Michigan: Responsible Use of Technology Resources (R1103) ( outlines user responsibilities to ensure ethical, legal, and secure use of computing, information, and network resources.

3.2 Domain Name Service Standards

The University policy for Domain Name Service Standards ( outlines the authorized use of domain names for the Internet. This policy covers when units and individual services can and cannot use the domain name or associate IP addresses with services. In general, all services that are provided by members of the University of Michigan community in-line with their official function as part of the mission of the institution, will be registered within the domain name. All services that are provided by either members or non-members of the University of Michigan community but which are not in-line with their official functions as members of the community or as part of the mission of the institution will be registered outside of the domain.

3.3 Commercial or Promotional Activity on the Network

The University policy on the Sale of Goods and Services to Non-University Entities (Standard Practice Guide 507.08, indicates these activities must be directly related to the mission of the University.

The University policy of Solicitations, Collections, and Donations (Standard Practice Guide 201.56, prohibits the distribution of literature or information which supports drives, campaigns, causes or organizations.

The University policy on Conflict of Interest (Standard Practice Guide 201.65-1, defines conditions under which faculty and staff use of official position and influence to further personal gain or that of families or associates is unacceptable behavior.

3.4 Advertising and Endorsements

The Committee on the Use of the University Name, appointed by Interim President Homer A. Neal in January 1997, is examining a range of issues related to use of the University name, marks, and good will in commercial and non-commercial ventures. Results of the Committee's work will guide development of policies for handling issues of advertisement and endorsement in Web publishing. At this time, the Office of Marketing Communications' Publication Guide ( covers current guidelines on advertising in University publications.

3.5 Copyright

The copying or re-transmission of copyrighted works in documents, document collections, or homepages without the expressed written permission of the copyright owner or the existence of fair use is prohibited. Additional information about copyright laws is available through the University Library copyright site ( The guidelines for Ethical Use of Digital Media ( provide further clarification relevant to copyright and the use of audio visual and multimedia resources.

The Publications Guide ( of the Office of Marketing Communications covers issues associated with the creation and use of copyrighted materials. All original material fixed in a tangible medium (photos, electronic and printed text, music, broadcast performance) produced by units of the University is inherently copyrighted under the Berne Accords, which are part of U.S. law. The Regents are the legal owners of University faculty and staff products. To discourage copyright infringement, state the copyright symbol, year of production and name of the copyright holder. The suggested format is to use the copyright bug (), or the word "copyright," followed by the year of publication and "the Regents of the University of Michigan."

According to the University's policy on intellectual property (, faculty may retain independent ownership of scholarly works. Questions about issues of ownership of copyright can be directed to the University's Office of General Counsel or the Technology Management Office (

Written permission should be obtained before copying or reproducing written, visual, and sound products that contain any non-University copyright notice, unless fair use exists.

Please note that photos and videos are generally copyrighted whether they carry a copyright notice or not. This includes photos reproduced for computer transmission via the Internet and electronically reproduced documents. If you reproduce a photo or video that has been borrowed from another source, written permission from the copyright holder for the intended use is necessary. Further, permission from any identifiable person appearing therein is also recommended.

3.6 Copyrighted Software

Several institutional policies relate to the ethical and legal use of copyrighted software:

Management of Copyrighted Software (Standard Practice Guide 601.03-1, dECEMBER 2, 1993,

Ethical and Legal Use of Software: A Guide for Students, Faculty and Staff at the University of Michigan (ITD Document, Reference 1175, March 1995,

3.7 Licensed Resources

Some information and software resources available through the UM network are licensed solely for use of the UM community. Redistribution of licensed resources to external communities is not permitted, unless specifically authorized in the license agreement.

3.8 University Symbols, Logos, Seals

The Office of Marketing Communications' Publications Guide ( describes policies related to symbols, logos, and seals.

A. Registered Marks. Certain University trademarks and service marks ("marks") are officially registered with the U.S. Trademark Office: the bar "Michigan," the block M, the block M with Michigan bar, the wolverine line drawing, the bar "Michigan Wolverines," the football helmet design, "M GO BLUE," "MICHIGAN" in block letters, a wolverine superimposed on a Block M, and a script Michigan.

The Trademark Licensing Office in the Department of Intercollegiate Athletics handles licensing of these marks. These marks may be used only for appropriate University purposes and may not be altered from their registered design. They may not be used outside the University without express permission of that office. For further information, University units should contact the Trademark Licensing Office in the Department of Intercollegiate Athletics (734-763-4183), or email the licensing director, Kristen B. Ablauf,

B. University of Michigan Seal. University-affiliated units may use the University seal on their official Internet sites for appropriate University purposes as they would use letterhead and business cards containing the seal. However, students are generally prohibited from using the seal on their personal web pages, since they do not represent the University in an official capacity at these sites. Questions regarding proper use of the University of Michigan seal should be directed to the Office of the Secretary of the University (734-764-3883).

The following disclaimer should be associated with use of the seal:

Trademarks of the University of Michigan may not be electronically or otherwise altered or separated from this document or used for any non-University purpose.
Photostats and electronic versions of the seal are available from Marketing Communications.

The University seal is also licensed by the Athletic Department for commercial purposes. If a commercial use of the seal is contemplated, please contact the Office of the Assistant Athletic Director for Licensing (734-763-2425).

3.9 Exposure to Offensive Materials

A proposed policy of the University describes the balance of freedom of expression and inadvertent or overt exposure to potentially offensive materials. The guidelines note that individuals should be allowed to choose what they wish to access for their own purposes and should not be unwittingly exposed to potentially offensive material by the deliberate and knowing acts of others.

4.0 UM-Gateway (the "institutional homepage")

The UM Gateway ( is the official Internet site ("homepage") for the institution. The Gateway's primary objectives are to:

4.1 Definition of Resources Appropriate for Linkage to the UM-Gateway

Several principles underlie the University's policies regarding publication on the Internet. The University upholds an individual's constitutional right to freedom of speech (Standard Practice Guide 601.01, The University also recognizes that information/publications created by units and individuals acting in an official capacity are representative of the University to the greater academic and public community. Therefore, an effort has been made to maintain this balance of good stewardship of institutional assets and individual freedom of expression in policies governing publishing on the Internet.

The UM-Gateway provides a framework and mechanisms for structured retrieval of officially authorized information resources of the institution. Publications and other information resources created by an official unit or other recognized organization of the University or an individual-created information resource which is sponsored by an official unit or registered organization are authorized for inclusion in the UM-Gateway environment. Organizations which are registered with the Michigan Student Assembly are recognized as UM official organizations.

The Gateway does not provide direct linkages to individual personal home pages. Rather, personal homepages are linked to a separate directory of personal homepages ( of University students, staff, and faculty.

4.2 Registration of Gateway Resources

Inclusion of (i.e., linkage) of appropriate information resources within the UM-Gateway environment is accomplished through a centrally managed registry of authorized information resources. The registry database provides descriptive information about the information resource, including information about the management of the resource and other descriptive attributes to aid in information retrieval.

The graphic below depicts which resources are appropriate to be linked to and registered in the UM-Gateway. These categories of information resources are defined as follows:

In order to verify University affiliation and organizational endorsement of information resources linked to the UM-Gateway, information providers will be asked to supply a valid University account number as a part of the registration form ( for information resources.

4.3 U-M Gateway Management

The U-M Gateway service is managed by a joint team of individuals from the Information Technology Division, the University Library, and the Office of University Relations. Questions about the U-M Gateway or related policies can be directed to The team bears responsibility for reviewing officially registered resources and taking necessary action to ensure compliance with institutional policies related to the Gateway.

4.4 Responsibilities of Information Providers

U-M Gateway information providers represent the University and are responsible for the pages they publish, and the direct links they maintain to other resources. Providers are expected to abide by the highest standards of quality and responsibility. Information providers are responsible for ensuring that content disseminated through a registered resource or the direct links from that resource comply with University policies and state and federal laws. Providers are expected to comply with all laws regarding copyright and intellectual property.

Although the goal of the University's Gateway policy is to ensure that information is reliable, accessible, and authoritative, the University cannot guarantee the complete accuracy and dependability of all information resources.

5.0 Guidelines for Information Providers

5.1 Creating and Registering UM Internet Resources

Required elements for resources linked to the institutional homepage

The homepage of unit or unit-sponsored resources should include:

Reviewing Gateway-linked resources

The Gateway webmaster is responsible for overseeing linkages of resources to the Gateway in accordance with the policies described herein.

Registering WWW Resources

The Gateway provides a mechanism for registering and describing U-M official information resources. Registration forms are available at

5.2 Information and Resources for Web Site Creation

ITD's Web Services Team ( provides a variety of resources to assist with web development. Some particular areas of interest are noted below.

Information Resource Design

Information users do not have equal access to high levels of technology resources (such as high-speed modems or WWW browsers with graphical interfaces). There are, however, ways to design Internet resources that accommodate this variation. See the Page Design section of the Web Services Resources ( page for additional information on this topic.


A repository of non-copyrighted images is available in the Graphics section of the Web Services Resources ( page.

Restricting Access to Web Resources

There are several levels of security available for web-based resources. More information may be found in the "Restricting WWW Access" section of the Web Services Resources ( page.


University faculty, staff, students, and groups can generate statistical information for their homepages via the facility found at:

6.0 Definitions

A document is a set of information designed and presented as an individual entity. A publication is a good example of a document. It may contain logical subunits such as parts, sections, or chapters; but it is typically created, updated, and presented as a single unit. The World Wide Web (WWW) presentation of a document may consist of one or many WWW pages.

Document Collection
A document collection is a set of documents that are logically related, usually by their content, target audience, or origin (e.g., a collection of studies produced by a program, project, or organization).

A Page, in the WWW environment, is an individual computer file which can be addressed by a hypertext link. Documents and collections are constructed of linked pages.

Although most pages are static files, some are not. HTML forms, Common Gateway Interface (CGI) scripts, and other mechanisms may be used to create pages which are front-ends to databases or other types of information services. Such services may dynamically create new pages containing query responses or customized forms in response to user input.

Home Page
A home page is the entry point to a WWW server or a collection. It is the first page of information received.

A one-way hypermedia connection from one site to another on the World Wide Web. Expressed as a "link to" or "link from" a web site or page of information.

WWW Server
A WWW server is a computer which provides access to one or more collections of documents using World Wide Web formats and protocols. Each WWW Server has a main entry point or home page, although numerous files or pages are usually directly addressable.

Each WWW server has a Webmaster--an individual with primary responsibility for the server. By convention, each WWW server maintains a Webmaster email address (e.g., or to which suggestions and inquiries about the site may be directed.

UM Gateway
The institution's official homepage ( which serves as a gateway--or entry point--to networked information created or maintained by units of the University.

UM Gateway Registry
The database of registered resources for UM Gateway, used for searching/retrieval.

UM Gateway Registration
Units or sponsored information resources should be registered as part of the UM Gateway environment. Registration records information about the resource's source/creator as well as other descriptive information to aid retrieval.

Maintainer/Publisher/Information Providers
An individual or unit responsible for creating or maintaining the information contained in World Wide Web pages.

Unit or Sponsored Information Resource
Documents, document collections, or homepages created by an official unit or other recognized organization of the University or an individual-created information resource which is sponsored by an official unit or registered organization. Organizations which are registered with the Michigan Student Assembly are recognized as UM organizations.

Personal Page
A web page for an individual faculty member, staff member, or student.