Electronic Communications - Employees
Information Technology Policy

Purpose:  This policy outlines the appropriate use of all electronic communications tools and media provided to University of St. Francis employees.

Policy:  Every employee is expected to use good judgment when using the university’s communications systems.  Electronic communications that are sent or received by the university owned communication systems are the property of the university and will be subject to the Terms of Use.

Applies to: All USF communications systems including but not limited to:  any messaging, collaboration, publishing, broadcast, or distribution system that depends on electronic communications resources to create, send, forward, reply to, transmit, distribute, broadcast, store, hold, copy, download, display, view, read, or print electronic records for purposes of communication across electronic communications network systems between or among individuals or groups, that is either explicitly denoted as a system for electronic communications or is implicitly used for such purposes.

Terms of Use

  • Employees are required to access and review University email on a frequent and consistent basis in order to stay current with University-related communications.
  • Employees should refrain from using their USF email account for personal business.
  •  Employees must recognize that certain communications may be time-critical.
  • The electronic communication systems are intended for business use and, as such, employee email accounts or other electronic communication systems may not be used to create or transmit unsolicited bulk messages (commonly known as “spam”), content intended for commercial gain, or content which violates applicable state or federal laws.
  • Users are solely responsible for any content they create or transmit while using the systems.
  • The University is not responsible for any content received by the user from another person or entity, and furthermore is not liable for any physical, emotional or mechanical damage arising from use of the system.
  • Upon termination of employment with the university, the employee’s email account and other system accounts will be terminated unless the employee is an alumni or currently registered student of St. Francis or retires from USF and requests that the email account remain active.  This does not apply to employees that have been dismissed from the University.
  • In the event an employee with an email account and system accounts enrolls as a student at USF, the accounts in use by that person will remain subject to the applicable employee electronic communications policy.
  • Employee email and system accounts are University-owned and subject to inactivation at the University’s sole discretion.

Mass Email Policy

Purpose:  The University of St Francis has seen a significant increase in the use of mass email to distribute news, information, personal opinions, sale of items, announcements to various constituencies and commercial advertisement and flyers.  Coinciding with this is an increase in complaints about unsolicited email messages using the University of St. Francis internal mail lists. 
In order to address these issues, the university has approved a mass email policy to clarify electronic communications, dissemination of information related to the university mission, and notification of constituents in case of emergency.  
This policy does not apply to the creation and configuration of individually created email-based distribution and discussions groups (also referred to as listservs).  Examples of this would be student clubs creating email distribution lists for communication with clubs or association members subscribing to a listserv or faculty members who create lists for electronic communication with students in their courses.  Anyone creating a distribution list, with the exception of official university communications, must comply with an individual’s request to be removed from the distribution list. 

Definition of Mass Email: For the purposes of this policy, mass email shall be considered to be any unsolicited electronic mailing in which the message is sent to members of the University community using University created email lists. 

Policy: Employee access to university email lists will be through the MyUSF portal.  Depending on the data access rights granted to the user will be able to use the various email lists available to them.  Employees will have access to 3 main University provided email lists.  These lists divide employees into faculty administrators and staff. 

Mass Email Process: Mass email communications should be used sparingly. Users are expected to comply with the approved process.

  • The MyUSF portal announcement program and the portal email lists will become the official method for University announcements for non-emergency and special purposes.
  • People may now choose to make a general announcement, a calendar event or both about their event or message.
  • People have the ability to create their own groups, committees and clubs to which people can make their own decision to join. 
  • Access to the traditional undergraduate student email list will be limited to the following people
    • The President’s Office staff
    • All Vice Presidents
    • Chief Information Officer
    • Deans
    • Executive Director of Student Academic Support Services
    • Executive Director of University Relations
    • Executive Director of Operations
    • Director of Human Resources
    • Director of Security
  • Anyone wishing to use email to communicate with students;
    • Use the MyUSF portal communication tools.
    • Contact their Director, Dean or VP and have the communication sent through their email/MyUSF account. (Remember you may not give or share your user account and password with other people.)
    • For long-term access to the student email list, you must contact the Chief Information Officer and request access to the student lists.
Guidelines for Mass Email

Appropriate mass email and broadcast topics include but are not limited to;

  • urgent security (physical or computer) matters.
  • university approved mass email messages
  • other time critical financial and administrative deadlines
  • natural disaster alerts
  • administrative announcements

Inappropriate mass email and broadcast topics include, but are not limited to

  • any message whose content is not relevant to USF's mission of teaching, research, and public service
  • “Reply to all” when congratulating people on their accomplishments
  • club or group information announcement of events or summary of an event’s activities
  • any commercial mailing
  • any solicitations
  • announcements for political rallies
  • advertisements for non-University sponsored/owned stores or services
  • chain letters
  • pyramid or make money fast schemes
  • information of interest to only a small segment of the University community
  • political issues or opinions
  • items for sale or rent
Criteria for Creating Mass Email Messages
  • Email Subject: The Subject line must be descriptive of the message.
  • Email Body:
  • Your name must appear in the TO box
  • The name, email address, and phone number of a person to contact should be contained in the message.
  • Messages should be brief and to the point. Provide instructions on how additional information can be obtained.
  • Any hyperlinks should include the fully qualified (include the http:// part) protocol to assure that most recipients will see the "active" links in your message.
  • The message should be proofread for spelling, grammatical and content errors.

Questions about this policy may be directed to the Chief Information Officer.

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