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Durham University

Computing and Information Services

Durham University Online (“Duo”) Terms and Conditions of Use

The services and content accessible from Durham University Online at (hereinafter “Duo”) are maintained and provided to you by the University of Durham (“us”, “we”, or “the University”) whose registered address is the Palatine Centre, Stockton Road, Durham, DH1 3LE, United Kingdom. All content and software accessible herein is either owned or licenced (where applicable) by the University.

Duo is provided by the University to individual authorised users (“Users”) only. Duo is designed to provide an online learning environment for Students and Staff at the University, for the purposes of granting such Users access to a wide range of support and information made available for learning, teaching and research activities conducted across the University.

Duo is provided via a mix of software licensed to and written by the University. The primary function of Duo is to allow Users to both provide and access learning and teaching materials. Duo offers a variety of communication tools to allow Users to communicate synchronously and asynchronously with each other and to participate in collaborative learning activities. Duo provides links to outside resources

Users of Duo are reminded that comments made using Duo reflect not only on you personally, but also on the University as an institution. Normal rules of social interaction should always be applied and the remoteness of potential recipients of communication conducted via Duo must not be used as an excuse to behave in any way that could reasonably be considered to be anti-social.

By proceeding with access to Duo, including accessing or utilising any of the services or content therein you hereby agree to be legally bound by the following terms and conditions (the “Terms”). If you do not accept the Terms, please do not attempt to use or access Duo. In the event that you have any questions or comments in regards to the Terms herein, please contact the University via the IT Service Desk (

Your use of Duo is at all times governed by the Terms as set out below, which should be read in conjunction with:

A. any details provided within Duo in regards to its operation; and
B. any terms relating specifically to the services or content available on Duo as detailed therein.

1. Accessing Duo

  1. Users may access Duo only by logging into the site using the user ID and password issued to you for this purpose. You may not access Duo using a password or user ID issued to someone else. It is a condition of your use of Duo that on conclusion of your session, you formally log out of the Site using the logout link displayed at the top of every page.
  2. Each individual User is responsible for the security and use of their username and password. With the exception of where an account is accessed by an authorised member of University staff, the use of someone else's account, username (or password) is prohibited. Any user found using someone else's username, or impersonating another user of the system, may be excluded from further use of Duo, and may be subject to disciplinary measures in accordance with the University’s standard regulations.
  3. Your use of Duo constitutes your complete acceptance of these Terms. We reserve the right to update or amend these Terms at any time, and therefore following any such change, in continuing with your use of Duo and any content or service available therein, you shall be deemed to have accepted such change. It is your responsibility to check the content of these Terms regularly, and to ensure you are aware of, and are happy to accept, any such changes.
  4. We reserve the right at all times to terminate your access to any or all of the services within Duo at any time, without notice, for any reason, including without limitation, breach of these Terms.
  5. With the exception of where User-Generated Content (as described in Clause 2 hereto) displayed on Duo specifically states otherwise, Duo and its contents (including without limitation Duo design, text, graphics and all software and source codes connected with Duo and its services) are protected by copyright, trade marks, patents and other intellectual property rights and laws. In accessing Duo you agree that you will access its contents solely for your educational, non-commercial use, or in accordance with any stated Commercial Commons Licence or other written permission we may grant to you. Except for your downloading, copying and/or printing of pages of Duo for your educational, non-commercial home use, in the absence of any applicable Commercial Commons Licence or other written permission granted in advance, none of the content may be downloaded, copied, reproduced, transmitted, stored, sold or distributed.
  6. No warranties or representations of any kind expressed or implied are given by the University (and if any such warranties and representations arise by operation of law or otherwise they are hereby disclaimed to the fullest extent permitted by law) in connection with Duo or its content or services including the completeness or accuracy of any of its contents (in particular but without limiting the foregoing any listed information).
  7. The University, its representatives, employees, officers and agents shall not be liable for any loss or damages or expenses of any kind including without limitation compensatory, direct, indirect or consequential damages, loss of data, income or profit, loss of or damage to property or claims by third parties howsoever arising (save for death or injury caused by the University's negligence or that of its representatives, employees, officers and agents) in connection with the copying or use of any information or material contained in or referred to on Duo or otherwise from your use of Duo.
  8. The University is not responsible for the content of external websites that link to Duo or which are linked from Duo.
  9. The University reserves the right to withdraw Duo or your access to Duo at any time and without prior warning. The University will endeavor to advise users of Duo in advance of any such withdrawal, whether such withdrawal is temporary or permanent, but is under no obligation to do so.
  10. In the event that any User allows children access to and use of Duo and any services therein, such users should supervise all such access and use. It is your responsibility to determine which content or services are appropriate for your child.
  11. We reserve the right at our discretion to prohibit any link from another Internet site or equivalent entity to materials or information on Duo. Without prejudice to that, any link to material or information on Duo must be neither misleading nor deceptive.
  12. Durham University, University of Durham, the University of Durham logo are all trade marks of the University or Trade Marks of a third party to which the University holds a licence and therefore such marks may not be reproduced without our prior written consent. Other organisation and company names referred to on this Website are the trade marks of their respective owners as indicated.

2. User-Generated Content

  1. Duo contains pages where Information, data, text, software, music, sound, photographs, graphics, video, messages, tags, or other materials can be posted, uploaded, linked to and/or otherwise submitted to Duo through the services available through Duo (collectively referred to as “User-Generated Content”). These facilities are provided to Users for educational purposes for your individual, and non-commercial use. Duo should be used only for the purposes of the exchange of lawful, relevant, fair and appropriate information, opinions and comment.
  2. Viewing and Using User-Generated Content: You hereby confirm your understanding and acknowledge that User-Generated Content is of an unpredictable nature and therefore:
    1. By using or accessing Duo there is a chance you may be exposed to content that might be offensive, harmful, inaccurate or otherwise inappropriate, or in some cases, postings may have been mislabeled or may be otherwise deceptive;
    2. Under no circumstances will we be liable in any way for any content or communications, including, but not limited to, any errors or omissions in any form of User-Generated Content, or any loss or damage of any kind incurred as a result of the use of any Website Content or User-Generated Content posted, emailed, transmitted or otherwise made available on Duo, or through its services;
    3. We do not endorse, support, represent or guarantee the truthfulness, accuracy, or reliability of any User-Generated Content or endorse any opinions that may be expressed therein, and therefore you agree to waive, and hereby do waive, any legal or equitable rights or remedies you have or may have against us with respect thereto;
    4. Any reliance on User-Generated Content will be at your own risk;
    5. Although for the purposes of some features of Duo, User-Generated Content may be screened or reviewed by us prior it being displayed on Duo, you acknowledge and agree that we do not have any obligation to review such content and you understand that certain User-Generated Content is permitted to be added to Duo without any prior review by us; and
    6. In the event you believe any User-Generated Content has infringed or violated your rights, including by defaming you or infringing your copyright, or is in breach of these Terms, please report this to us immediately by emailing describing the nature of your complaint. We shall endeavour to promptly remove any User-Generated Content reported to us where we agree, based on our sole judgement, that such User-Generated Content has been added in breach of the Terms; however we cannot guarantee to do so
    7. In the event that you wish to use or reproduce any User-Generated Content or other material taken from Duo, you agree to do so only strictly in accordance with any Commercial Commons Licence as may be stated on Duo to be applicable to such material or content, or in accordance with advance written permission from the copyright holder.
  3. Adding User-Generated Content: Should you wish to add any User-Generated Content to Duo personally, or on behalf of any third party, as the originator, you hereby agree to the following:
    1. You are solely responsible for all User-Generated Content that you post, upload, link to and/or otherwise submit to Duo through any services or any applications that may be available through Duo, whether it is publicly posted or privately transmitted.
    2. Although for the purposes of some features of Duo, User-Generated Content is screened and reviewed by us prior it being displayed on Duo, you acknowledge and agree that we do not have any obligation to review such content and you understand that certain User-Generated Content is permitted to be added to Duo without any prior review by us.
    3. We reserve the right at all times (but will not have any obligation) to remove or refuse to distribute any User-Generated Content for any reason, particularly where such User-Generated Content violates the Terms.
    4. In addition, we reserve the right to access, read, preserve, and disclose any information as we reasonably believe is necessary to (a) satisfy any applicable law, regulation, legal process or governmental request, (b) enforce these Terms of Service, including investigation of potential violations hereof, (c) detect, prevent, or otherwise address fraud, security or technical issues, or (d) protect our rights, property or safety, and that of our users and the public. We will not in any way be responsible or liable for exercising or choosing not to exercise this right.
    5. We do not claim or assert ownership or control over User-Generated Content and you will at all times retain any and all trademarks or copyright to any User-Generated Content that you submit, post or display on or through Duo, and therefore you will remain responsible for protecting such rights.
    6. By submitting any such content to Duo, you thereby grant us a non-exclusive, worldwide, royalty-free, sublicensable, perpetual and irrevocable right and license to use such User-Generated Content (or any part of it, and as that we may edit or otherwise modify such content at our discretion) for any purpose. You consent to such uses in any medium now known or developed in the future, including photographs, video, slide shows, Internet images or other mediums, means of storage or distribution.
    7. You will have the option of specifying appropriate usage restrictions to apply to your uploaded content, in the form of a Creative Commons Licence. You are solely responsible for specifying such restrictions and shall be solely responsible for enforcement of any such licence in the event that a third party uses your content in breach of any Creative Commons Licence under which it was released. In the event that you are adding such content to Duo on behalf of any third party, you shall remain solely responsible for applying appropriate Creative Commons Licences to the content, and therefore solely responsible for enforcement of any such licence. It is therefore your responsibility to discuss and agree such licence choices with the relevant third party in advance of adding any such content to Duo.
    8. You hereby warrant to the University that any such content:-
      1. does not: feature any image(s) of any individual(s) or third parties from whom all necessary permissions the use such images in such way have not been properly obtained in advance in writing; or copy or feature the Intellectual Property of any individual(s) or third parties from whom all necessary licences or permissions to use such Intellectual Property in such way have not been properly obtained in advance in writing;
      2. does not copy or feature the Intellectual Property of any individual(s) or third party from whom a licence or other permission have not been obtained in advance unless you have made all reasonable enquiries and established with certainty that copyright to such content has expired prior to the date such content is added to Duo;
      3. is in no way defamatory, abusive, discriminatory, threatening, harassing, harmful to children, obscene, offensive, or which applauds, encourages or entices abuse, discrimination or hate;
      4. has not been disclosed to you in confidence or which, by its nature, is confidential;
      5. does not compromise or invade the privacy or security of anyone other than yourself; and that you have secured the consent of any person (and, in the case of a child, of those persons who have parental responsibility for such child);
      6. does not encourage criminal conduct or which may give rise to civil liability, or which is otherwise unlawful;
      7. where the property of a third party, is submitted with the prior written consent of the owner of the same;
      8. is not likely to give rise to any third party claims;
      9. contains no links taking users to unlawful material or material that contravenes these Terms;
      10. contains no advertisement nor makes commercial solicitations;
      11. does not authorise, enable or encourage the dissemination of any unsolicited or unauthorised advertising, promotional materials, "junk mail," "spam," "chain letters," "pyramid schemes," or any other form of solicitation; or which contains software viruses or any other computer code, files or programs designed to interrupt, damage, destroy or limit the functionality of any computer software or hardware or telecommunications equipment; or which might interfere with the normal operation of Duo or servers or networks connected to Duo
  4. User-Generated Content and Privacy: By using Duo for the purposes of accessing or submitting User-Generated Content you accept the following provisions:
    1. All User-Generated Content you choose to submit on or through Duo is made available to other Users. By submitting User-Generated Content to Duo that contains personal information, you acknowledge that you understand that such personal information can be read, collected, or used by others, and could potentially be used by others to send you unsolicited messages.
    2. With the exception of User-Generated Content submitted to Duo by students, for the purposes of their participation in any assessment or examination as may be required by the University to be undertaken and submitted in this way in order to progress with the course of studies on which they are enrolled with the University, you should have no expectation of privacy or confidentiality with respect to User-Generated Content you submit on or through Duo and you should not submit any content you do not wish to make available to the general public. Users are reminded however, that the University is at all times subject to the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act 2000, and nothing in these Terms shall prevent the University from complying with its statutory obligations to which it is bound thereunder.
    3. Your use of Duo constitutes your agreement to respect the privacy of others. You may not, under any circumstances, release personal information of others via Duo, including that of fellow Users, without the written consent of both the University and the person or persons whose personal information you intend to share. You may not, under any circumstances, use personal information that may be obtained from Duo to send unsolicited emails, facsimile transmissions, chain letters, spam or any other communication or messages, even if the recipient has communicated with you in the past.
    4. You agree to immediately notify the University of any release or breach of any third party’s privacy via the release of personal information (including name, address, phone numbers, email addresses, account numbers etc) that occurs as a result of use of Duo under your log-in details.
    5. As a User, you hereby acknowledge and agree that should you, in the course of your use of Duo, choose to access or use any “Social Learning Tools” made available to you via Duo, including Profiles, People Tools, Spaces, Messages and Calendar, such Social Learning Tools are provided to the University under a separate software licence, by a third party, namely Blackboard Social. Blackboard Social shall have access to and control of any User-Generated Content uploaded to Duo in this way. Any such use will enable such User-Generated Content to be accessed and viewed widely by all Duo users within the University, and also by all other users of online learning environment systems provided via the same software through which Duo is provided. Such users originate from other Universities extending both nationally and internationally. Users are solely responsible for their use of any Social Learning Tools via Duo, and the disclosure of any User-Generated Content in accordance with the preceding terms outlined herein

3. Data Protection and Privacy

  1. With the exception of your submission of User-Generated Content, where for the purposes of accessing and using Duo, you provide us with any personal information from which we can identify you as a living individual (whether by taking that information by itself or when using it in conjunction with other information which we hold or are likely to hold) we shall process such information only in accordance with the provisions of the Data Protection Act 1998.
  2. You acknowledge that any personal information submitted to Duo via the Social Learning Tools as described in Clause 2(d)(v) above, shall be submitted entirely at your own risk. You understand that such data shall be controlled by Blackboard Social, shall be outside the control of the University, and may be exported and stored outside the UK. The University accepts no responsibility for any personal data disclosed by Users in this way.
  3. We will not collect any personal information about you, except where it is specifically and knowingly provided by you, for example when you register as a user of Duo or request information or provide us with feedback on Duo. We do not sell or share any information about you as an individual user of this website unless you agree to us doing so.
  4. In accessing Duo, you acknowledge that in doing so, we sometimes place small amounts of information on the device via which you access Duo, such as your computer or mobile phone. These pieces of information include small files known as “cookies”. Cookies cannot be used to identify you personally, they are simply used to improve the services provided to you by, for example: remembering your log-in details thus saving you having to re-enter these details to view every new page you wish to access during a session, or to remember selections or preferences you may have made earlier in a session. In continuing to access and use Duo, you are assumed to be aware of the use of Cookies on the site, and therefore confirm your acceptance of such use.

4. General Provisions

  1. Nothing in the Terms is intended to confer or purports to confer on any third party any right to enforce any provision of these Terms.
  2. Should any provision or provisions of the Terms be determined to be invalid, illegal or unenforceable for any reason by any court of competent jurisdiction then such term shall be severed and the remaining terms shall survive and continue in full force and effect and remain binding and enforceable.
  3. These Terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the law of England and you hereby submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the English courts. Where you use duo outside of the United Kingdom you agree to comply with all applicable laws regarding the transmission of technical data exported from the United Kingdom or the country in which you reside (if different) and with all local laws and rules regarding acceptable use of and conduct on the Internet

Version 1.0 - 17th January 2013