Web Presence and Publishing Policy - SUNY Empire State College

Sponsor:

Office of Communications and Government Relations

Contact:

Chief Information Officer and Vice President for the Office of Integrated Technologies

Category:

Computer and Integrated Technology Policies

Number:

700.007

Effective Date:

2011/08/08

Review Date:

2012/08/01

Implementation History:

New

Keywords:

World Wide Web, Web presence, Web pages, Web publishing, homepage, college website

Background Information:

Replaces College World Wide Web Server Policy dated April, 26 1996 last revised June 1999.

Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to establish authority, responsibilities, and actions that assure that the SUNY Empire State College (the college) presence on the World Wide Web supports and promotes the college mission by:

  1. providing appropriate access to accurate, timely, relevant and authoritative information
  2. publishing materials consistent with the college’s graphic identity program and which best reflect the official image and message of the college
  3. identifying authority and responsibility for the college’s presence on the Web
  4. establishing resources available and direction to all who would publish materials on college or college-affiliated Web pages
  5. ensuring regular review of college and college -affiliated Web pages for compliance with established policy, standards, guidelines and best practices
  6. ensuring that the college's Web presence forms a coherent whole. 

Definitions

  1. College Web Pages:  Web pages under the direct control of SUNY Empire State College that represent the official voice of the college to all internal and external audiences including prospective students, current students, alumni, faculty, staff,  friends of the college and the general public. Examples include the main college Web pages; learning resource sites such as the online Library; Web based applications such as Web Advisor and DP Planner; and, other online sites and tools used to conduct official college business or convey official college information.
  2. college-affiliated Web Pages: Web pages developed, maintained or hosted by entities other than SUNY Empire State College but referenced or used by the college to conduct official business or represent the official voice of the college in accordance with the college’s mission. Examples may include but are not limited to: www.esclibrary.blogspot .com; www.ed2go.com/esccwa; www.subjectguides.esc.edu/home; www.cml.esc.edu; www.alumni.esc.edu; and, www.bookstore.esc.edu.
  3. Individual Web Pages: Web pages developed and maintained by SUNY Empire State College students, faculty and staff for the purpose of self-expression, communication or other individual uses related to the individual’s affiliation with the college and the college’s mission.
  4. Personal Web Pages: Web pages developed and maintained by individuals for the purpose of personal self-expression, communication or other personal uses. SUNY Empire State College does not host, maintain or provide support for personal Web pages.
  5. College Name Space: domain names recognized as associated with SUNY Empire State College, e.g. www.esc.edu, suny-empire.esc.edu, commons.esc.edu, etc.
  6. Electronic Publications: content posted and available online or shared via network resources.  Examples include, but are not limited to, text files, HTML and PDF documents, audio and video flash files or other materials and documents available online.
  7. Site Steward: individual SUNY Empire State College employee responsible for the accuracy and appropriateness of a Web page’s content.  The steward may or may not also be the site administrator and /or subject matter expert. The site steward is typically, but not exclusively, a dean or director.
  8. Site Administrator: individual SUNY Empire State College employee responsible for the development and maintenance of content on Web pages assigned by a site steward. Site administrators are normally those with technical skills assigned to develop and maintain Web pages, or who have direct supervisory responsibility over those who develop and maintain Web pages.
  9. Subject Matter Expert: individual SUNY Empire State College employee who creates or provides basic content source materials and reviews Web page content for accuracy, timeliness and relevance
  10. Branding: any feature of a Web page that conveys the identity of SUNY Empire State College through name, text, symbols, emblems, logos, colors, seal or other audio or visual effects
  11. Archive: to save content that is no longer current but may be required for historical purposes or reference
  12. Delete: to erase content, entire Web pages and/or files from the server
  13. Remove: to eliminate all links to content, entire Web pages and/or files from a published website, and to change the access permissions to prevent access by users who may have bookmarked the content.
  14. Publications Style Guide: SUNY Empire State College official guide for the appearance, writing style and branding of all SUNY Empire State College publications including print and digital media.
  15.  Web-based Instructional Materials: Instructional material provided via the Web specifically for courses or studies.  Such materials are governed by the college’s policy on academic freedom as outlined in the Faculty Handbook.  More general-purpose, publicly available learning resources such as Writing Resources or the Information Skills Tutorials are not considered SUNY Empire State College Web-based Instructional Material and should be treated as College or college-affiliated Web Pages.
  16. Web Presence: message, image or other representation of an organization or individual as presented on the Web.  Encompasses any form of content that may be presented via the Web on College, college-affiliated, Individual or Personal Web Pages.
  17. Web Presence Advisory Committee: SUNY Empire State College working committee tasked with advising the Vice President for Communications and Government Relations and the Vice President for Integrated Technology regarding the college’s presence on the Web.
  18. WebPresenceStandardsandPractices:SUNY Empire State College technical and practical guide to Web development and maintenance of the college’s Web sites.

Statements

  1. SUNY Empire State College webpages, affiliated webpages and electronic publications are official SUNY Empire State College publications.  Their content is the property of SUNY Empire State College and may not be copied, modified, used on other sites or re-purposed without express, written permission from the vice president for communications and government relations. As official SUNY Empire State College publications, they are subject to the policies and standards for the college’s publications as found in the SUNY Empire State College’s Publications Style Guide. The use of the college name, symbols, emblems, logos, seal, and colors shall comply with this guide.

    In addition, these pages and publications are subject to the guidelines and best practices found in the SUNY Empire State College’s Web Presence Standards and Practices and the college’s Integrated Technologies Acceptable Use policy. More specifically:
    1. College Webpages
      1. will use current official college templates and designs
      2. will be in accordance with the college’s Publications Style Guide and Web Presence Standards and Practices
      3. may contain public and/or password-protected content
      4. will reside on a college server or under a college name space
      5. will be reviewed and approved to ensure compliance with the college’s Publications Style Guide, Web Presence Standards and Practices and Integrated Technologies Acceptable Use policy
      6. will be included in the college's site search in accordance with the Web Presence Standards and Practices
      7. will be overseen and maintained by the author or designated site steward(s), site administrator(s) and subject matter expert(s).
    2. College-Affiliated Webpages
      1. may use college name space, templates or designs
      2. may contain public and/or password-protected content
      3. may reside on a college server, under a college name space or in a social media site like Facebook, Blogspot or YouTube
      4. may be reviewed for compliance with the college’s Publications Style Guide and Integrated Technologies Acceptable Use policy
      5. will be in accordance with the college’s Publications Style Guide and Integrated Technologies Acceptable Use policy
      6. will be included in the college's site search in accordance with the Web Presence Standards and Practices
      7. will be overseen and maintained by the author or designated site steward(s), site administrator(s) and subject matter expert(s)
      8. will be linked from official college webpages; the placement and phrasing of such links will be guided by the college Web manager, director of collegewide Web marketing and the vice president for communications and government relations.
  2. All college and college-affiliated webpage content will have an assigned site steward and site administrator. Any college website content for which a steward and administrator has not been assigned will be removed from the college website by the college Web manager. Once a steward and administrator have been assigned the college Web manager will republish the content to the college website.
  3. College and college-affiliated webpage content shall be reviewed and updated as necessary at least once per calendar year to assure accuracy, currency and compliance with college policy, standards and guidelines. After appropriate notice has been given to a site steward, content not reviewed may be removed from the college website by the college Web manager. Such content may be republished once the required review and any necessary updates are completed.
  4. Temporary or ad hoc websites and pages connected to specific events are to be taken down no later than 60 days after the event. Such pages may be moved to a generally available and searchable archive by request. Forward requests for accessible archiving to the college Web master.
  5. Individual webpages shall comply with SUNY Empire State College policy, Use of the Commons and Individual Web Spaces.
  6. Webpages and electronic publications not officially affiliated with SUNY Empire State College, shall not exhibit SUNY Empire State College branded templates, name, symbols, emblems, logos, colors, seal, or, recreate content or functionality provided by SUNY Empire State College and college-affiliated publications and web pages.
  7. SUNY Empire State College reserves the right to remove from any SUNY Empire State College server or communications system utilizing university network or name space, any webpage or publication it believes to be in violation of SUNY Empire State College policy. The college Web manager, with final authority resting with the vice president for communications and government relations, may remove webpages and publications believed to be in violation of this policy.

Responsibility and Authority

  1. The vice president for communications and government relations is responsible for:
    1. coordinating all college information and publications and for assuring accuracy and consistency of college message and image. The vice president has responsibility for and authority over the content and appearance of all college webpages, College-affiliated webpages and publications
    2. creating, approving and maintaining SUNY Empire State College’s Publications Style Guide. The college Web manager,  director of collegewide Web marketing and Web Presence Advisory Committee shall provide assistance to the vice president for the web-related portions of this guide
    3. approving the portions of SUNY Empire State College’s Web Presence Standards and Practices that pertain to the college’s message and image
    4. ensuring due process with regard to reviewing alleged violations and enforcing noncompliance to this policy and related procedures
    5. chartering the Web Presence Advisory Committee and recruiting and appointing members which shall include the college Web manager as an ex officio non-voting member
  2. The college Web manager is responsible for:
    1. working with the vice president for communications and government relations, the vice president for integrated technologies, the director of collegewide Web marketing, the Web Presence Advisory Committee, Office of Integrated Technology staff, and others as needed to ensure that the college Web presence supports and promotes the college mission
    2. stewardship of SUNY Empire State College’s Web Presence Standards and Practices. The college Web manager will consult with the vice president for communications and government telations, the vice president for integrated technologies, the director of collegewide Web marketing, the Web Advisory Committee and OIT staff regarding the development and maintenance of the Web Presence Standards and Practices
    3. monitoring college and college-affiliated webpages for compliance with the college’s Publications Style Guide, Web Presence Standards and Practices, Integrated Technologies Acceptable Use policy and other relevant college policies, taking appropriate steps necessary to ensure compliance
    4. overseeing the content review cycle – communicating with site stewards about upcoming review deadlines, removing content that has not been reviewed on time and restoring content once reviews are completed
    5. coordinating with the director of collegewide Web marketing and OIT staff  to monitor website content, quality and performance and assisting site stewards and administrators to improve the site content, quality, and performance
    6. ensuring that stewards have regular access to site and content analytics
    7. providing assistance to site stewards and administrators on Web development and support issues, including account access
    8. maintaining records of all assigned site stewards and administrators in a form that is available to college employees
    9. stewardship of the internal search function of the college’s Web presence;  providing guidance and help to site stewards and administrators related to the searchability of their content.
  3. The director of collegewide Web mMarketing is responsible for:
    1. working with the director of communications, the college Web manager, the Web Presence Advisory Committee, OIT staff and others as needed to ensure that the Web presence supports and promotes the college mission
    2. search engine optimization (SEO) of the college’s public Web presence for external search engines;  the director of collegewide Web marketing shall have authority over the SEO of the college’s public Web presence
    3. stewardship of the college’s Web-based marketing activities
    4. analyzing and reporting the college’s Web-based marketing activities
    5. providing assistance to the director of communications and the college Web manager for pertinent sections of SUNY Empire State College’s Publications Style Guide and the Web Presence Standards and Practices.
  4. The Web Presence Advisory Committee is responsible for:
    1. representing the concerns of key stakeholders in all matters related to the college’s Web presence
    2. proposing and reviewing appropriate policies, standards, guidelines and practices related to the college Web presence
    3. advising the vice president for communications and government relations, the vice president for integrated technologies, the director of collegewide Web marketing and the Web manager regarding issues related to the college’s Web presence.
  5. Site stewards are responsible for:
    1. overseeing and approving the content of their designated Web pages
    2. ensuring the accuracy, timeliness and relevance of their designated Web pages
    3. appointing  site administrator(s) and subject matter expert(s)
    4. ensuring that their designated Web pages are in accordance with policy, standards, guidelines and best practices
    5. consulting as necessary with the college Web manager, director of collegewide Web marketing and/or director of communications regarding assigned Web content
  6. Site administrators are responsible for:
    1. developing and maintaining the content of their assigned pages in accordance with policy, standards, guidelines and best practices   
    2. consulting as needed with subject matter experts and the site steward
    3. consulting as needed with the college Web manager, director of collegewide Web marketing and/or director of communications regarding assigned web content.  
  7. Subject matter experts are responsible for ensuring the accuracy and currency of content in their assigned pages.

Applicability

  1. This policy applies to:
    1. all members of the SUNY Empire State College community and governs all Web storage and communications systems utilizing the college network or college name space
    2. all college and college-affiliated webpages and electronic publications that meet this document’s definitions.
  2. This policy does not apply to:
    1. pages that meet this document’s definition of Web-based instructional materials or individual webpages. However, such pages may, at the discretion of the creator or author, exhibit college-branded templates, the college name, symbols, emblems, logos, colors or seal. In so doing, these pages will be deemed as expressing the official voice of SUNY Empire State College and will be governed by this policy
    2. pages that meet this document’s definition of personal Web pages. Personal Web pages shall not exhibit the college-branded templates, the college name, symbols, emblems, logos, colors or seal, or recreate content or functionality provided by college or college-affiliated webpages or publications.

Violations/Non-compliance

      1. Reports of Web content that is in alleged violation of this policy will be investigated and handled in accordance with the college’s Web Presence Standards and Practices.
      2. If Web content is found to be in violation of SUNY Empire State College policies, or if traffic to a page has a negative impact on the operation of the SUNY Empire State College system, the college has the authority to remove the page without prior notice and/or refer the complaint for appropriate action. Site stewards who have their pages removed may appeal the decision to the vice president for communications and government relations in accordance with the college’s Web Presence Standards and Practices.
      3. SUNY Empire State College complies with all New York state and federal disability regulations (including the Americans with Disabilities Act, as amended in 2008, and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973) and follows industry-standard Web accessibility guidelines (such as Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and World Wide Web Consortium guidelines). Additional information can be found online at: http://www.esc.edu/disabilityservices. Interpretation of accessibility requirements, policies or related questions and concerns may be directed to the SUNY Empire State College director of collegewide disability services at Disability.Services@esc.edu, or 800-847-3000, ext. 2201, or the New York State Relay Service at 800-421-1220.

Exceptions/Exemptions

Requests for exceptions or exemptions to this policy shall be processed in accordance with the college’s Web Presence Standards and Practices. Requests must be in writing and routed to the vice president for communications and government relations with copies to the college Web manager and director of collegewide Web marketing. The requestor must provide supporting evidence for the exception or exemption. The vice president for communications and government relations will consult with the Web manager, director of collegewide Web marketing and Web Presence Advisory Committee about whether or not to grant the exception or exemption. Final authority for the decision about the exception or exemption rests with the vice president for communications and government relations.

Applicable Legislation and Regulations

  1. NYS Technology Law: Internet Security and Privacy Act (www.cio.ny.gov/tables/Policy/OFTenablingLeg.htm#ArticleII)
  2. New York State Laws and Regulations Relevant to State Government Records (www.archives.nysed.gov/a/records/mr_laws_state.shtml)
  3. Digital Millennium Copyright Act (www.copyright.gov/legislation/dmca.pdf)
  4. Executive Order No. 3: Promotion of  Access to Government Decision making (www.cio.ny.gov/eo3.htm)

Related References, Policies, Procedures, Forms and Appendices

New York State Policies:

  1. Accessibility of Web Based Information and Applications (www.cio.ny.gov/Policy/NYS-P08-005.pdf)
  2. NYS Guidelines for Internet Privacy Policy (www.cio.ny.gov/policy/NYSGuidelineG02-001.pdf)
  3. Acceptable Use of Information Technology (IT) Assets (www.cio.ny.gov/policy/G09-001/NewYorkStateAcceptableUseBestPracticeGuideline.doc)

SUNY Empire State College Policies:

  1. College IT Policies (www.esc.edu/integrated-technologies/technology-policies/)
  2. Academic Freedom (Faculty Handbook) (www.esc.edu/facultyhandbook)