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Web Policy

I.   Introduction

SUNY Cortland’s website is an official communication tool of the College designed for sharing information with the campus community and its constituents.

SUNY Cortland’s Web Policy applies to information: (1) published on servers owned by SUNY Cortland; (2) published within the SUNY Cortland cortland.edu domain; and (3) published elsewhere under direction or control of a SUNY Cortland department, organization or individual, where the contents are identified as SUNY Cortland information.

In many instances, SUNY Cortland’s website is governed by the same policies that regulate similar operations across the College, such as campus advertising policies in the College Handbook, style guidelines in the SUNY Cortland Communication Guide and the Code of Student Conduct. Policies that are specific to use of the website are found in this document.

II.  General Principles

The website will reflect the College’s mission and strategic plan as well as the goals and objectives that emanate from these initiatives.

The content presented on the website will be accurate, timely and responsive to SUNY Cortland’s key audiences. It also will meet the standards articulated in the College’s Communication Guide.

III. Accessibility

SUNY Cortland has a legal and moral imperative to ensure that its website and Web pages on its servers attempt to meet every standard established by New York State’s Office for Technology.

While the College’s official Web templates handle most accessibility issues, assistance will be provided to individuals and programs to bring new and/or existing content into compliance. In extreme cases, it may be necessary to temporarily remove content while revising it so that it conforms.

IV. User Responsibilities

The ability to add content to the College’s website by faculty, staff and students is considered a privilege, not a right, and users must abide by College policies and procedures.

Failure to conform with any College policy applicable to the website may result in the immediate loss of the ability to publish content on the Web.

V. Content Management System

The College’s website is managed through a content management system (CMS). Individuals who publish information will be expected to work within the CMS.

VI. Template and Content Standards for Official SUNY Cortland Websites

Academic departments, administrative offices and student organizations are required to use the official Web template for their page(s) when technically feasible. Web templates are located in the College’s content management system.

Department and administrative office heads are responsible for their unit’s Web content. Each department or office shall designate one individual to be responsible for maintaining the accuracy and timeliness of website information and for ensuring that their unit’s Web page adheres to all relevant College policies. This individual also must acquire training related to creating and maintaining their website.

Students may develop websites for their clubs and organizations. Faculty and staff advisors to student organizations are responsible for those organizations’ Web pages, while the Student Affairs Office is responsible for the content of any Web pages developed by the Student Government Association. 

Web content must meet the following standards:

  • All websites should clearly identify the name of the College department, office or organization, include contact information and must meet the standards established in the SUNY Cortland Communication Guide.
  • Web page content must not violate copyright or trademark laws and should adhere to the Copyright and Fair Use Policy of SUNY Cortland.

  • No anonymous information may be published on the College’s website. Information posted on all official SUNY Cortland Web pages must contain the email address of the author, owner or sponsor of the information.
  • Non-college Web content should not use or replicate the College’s templates in a manner that confuses content ownership.

VII. Personal Web Pages

A personal Web page is defined as a Web page for any SUNY Cortland individual faculty member, staff member or student that contains information of a personal nature unrelated to their responsibilities at the College and to which a link has been established from an official College page.

  • Faculty, staff and students - Individual members of the faculty and staff may create their own personal Web pages using the information technology resources of the College.

  • As authorized by their department head, faculty and staff may link their personal Web pages to their department’s home page.

  • The following disclaimer must appear on all personal pages to which there is a link from any official College page: "The views and opinions expressed in this page are strictly those of the page author. The contents of this linked page have not been reviewed or approved by SUNY Cortland."

  • The content of personal Web pages will not be maintained by Information Resources or Publications and Electronic Media staff.

  • The College does not guarantee the privacy or the public accessibility of personal Web pages.

  • Faculty and staff must abide by the Web Advisory Team's Policy Statement, taken from the SUNY Cortland Communication Guide. If a personal Web page is judged by the Web Advisory Team to contain material that is grossly offensive or inappropriate, the College may remove all links from official College pages to that personal page.

  • Personal Web pages that violate College security policies, state and federal laws will be disabled immediately.

  • Personal Web pages are subject to appropriate use as described in the Information Technology Resources Acceptable use Policy, Section III, User Responsibilities.

VIII. Web Advisory Team

The Web Advisory Team (WAT) is appointed by SUNY Cortland’s president. This committee advises on issues related to the College’s website as well as broader concerns relevant to the Web.

The WAT is responsible for developing policies, standards and procedures to ensure consistency and compliance throughout the College’s website.

The WAT proposes recommendations to the College president and the President’s Cabinet for review and approval. The WAT also serves as an initial contact point and clearinghouse for policy matters regarding the College’s website.

Members of the WAT are:

  • Gradin Avery, communications
  • Michelle Cryan, publications and electronic media
  • Elizabeth Klein, childhood/early childhood education
  • Virginia Levine, President's Office
  • Joshua Peluso, systems administration and Web services
  • Frederic Pierce, public relations
  • Tracy Rammacher, publications and electronic media (chair)
  • John Sternfeld, biological sciences
  • Sharon Todd, recreation, parks and leisure studies
  • Gail Wood, library
  • Mark Yacavone, admissions

IX. Advertising on the Web

For more information regarding the College’s advertising policy, refer to the College Handbook.