Every effort has been made to ensure that information on this page is accurate. Please notify Sue of any inaccuracies or omissions. Information about institutions not mentioned here is welcome.
"Permission to install private pages is normally granted as one of the privileges associated with a University computing account. However, the permission may be withdrawn at any time by the Director of Information Systems or nominee. Owners of private Web pages must observe the Guidelines for Use of IT Facilities."
Apart from banning advertisements and stating that web servers must comply with the law and are subject to the Conditions of Use etc., Newcastle does not seem to place any restrictions on permitted content.
Oxford's policy states: "OUCS provides registered Herald users with 15Mb of additional web space with their email accounts." Herald seems to be the main University email account system. Training courses on writing web pages are offered.
Since I quoted this page I have been contacted by Stephen Emmott, Web Services Manager, BSS at the LSE, to point out (a) that I had missed off four words at the end of the quote (this was an accident) and (b) that LSE's policy is in fact similar to the one Birmingham is now proposing. They have amended the page above so that it now reads:
"This facility, available to all staff and students, allows the publication on the Web of material for academic and related purposes but which is not relevant to either the LSE website nor the School's virtual learning environment, WebCT."
"The University Web Server is configured to accept personal web pages for all users. Personal web pages are for personal pages or pages concerned with personal projects or student projects."
Under "3.2. Personal pages", this policy states: "Staff and students of the University may set up their own personal web pages, which are normally held in their own file space on the main web server". There do not appear to be any restrictions on content apart from the general legal requirements and the University's "conditions and guidelines".
Seems to have a much more honourable policy than many, to judge from pages like this one:
Prof. David Colquhoun's politics page
In Prof. Colquhoun's own words: "Thanks to the liberal traditions of UCL, I am allowed to say what I like here."
They appear to have no restrictions apart from the general legal ones. Pages with political content unrelated to the owner's field of work are clearly permitted. See, for example, the home page of Susan Stepney, a professor of computer science, which includes a very conspicuous campaign against national ID cards.
NWU provides webspace for its staff on which they can apparently say just about anything, including holocaust denial, as long as it's in a personal capacity.
Take the case of Arthur R. Butz, a professor of engineering at NWU. He also happens to be the author of "The Hoax of the Twentieth Century: The Case Against the Presumed Extermination of European Jewry" in which he argues that the gas chambers were scientifically impossible.
Butz has a website at Northwestern University, which he uses to promote his and other people's publications denying the Holocaust. When there were protests, the university president issued a strong statement condemning holocaust revisionism but continuing: "The network is a free and open forum for the expression of ideas, including viewpoints that are strange, unorthodox, or unpopular. The network administrators place no official sanctions upon the expression of personal opinion on the network. However, such opinions may not be represented as views of Northwestern University."
Sue Blackwell and Nat Queen, the authors of this page, would like to make it clear that they too find holocaust denial despicable. But we cite this example to show that other universities take a very different view from Birmingham on intellectual freedom.
The relevant bit is: "L'utilisation des ressources informatiques et l'usage des service Internet ainsi que du réseau pour y accéder ne sont autorisés que dans le cadres exclusif de l'activité professionelle des utilisateurs conformement à la législation en vigueur ... L'activité professionelle est celle prévue par les statuts du GIP RENATER auqel est lié le CNRS, à savoir: les activités de recherches, d'enseignements de développements techniques, de transferts de technologies, de diffusion d'informations scientifiques, techniques et culturelles, d'experimentations de nouveaux services présentant un caractère d'innovation technique, mais également toute activité administrative et de gestion découlant ou accompagnant ces activités."
However, the rules do not appear to be interpreted very strictly! We know of at least one webpage hosted at Paris 7 which contains not only academic material but also political content. (We have removed the link to this page at the request of the academic concerned).
The pages of the Ghent Centre for Islam in Europe, based at the University, have oodles of links to highly political pages including many concerned with Palestine. The site even includes a link to Sue's Palestinian pages ! Hartelijk bedankt, mensen!
This page is maintained by Sue Blackwell
Last updated: 11th April 2008