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Internet Use and Publishing Guidelines

The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston (UTMB Health) promotes, supports and relies on the internet, intranet and related web applications to carry out its missions of education, research and clinical service. It uses these tools for communication, administration, business functions, employee and student support, and other core business operations.

UTMB places conditions and guidelines on the use of the internet and intranet, related resources and web applications, on computer systems and facilities that are the property of UTMB.  The purpose of these guidelines is to provide general information to campus users of these resources.

Several principles underlie UTMB’s guidelines regarding access to and publication on the internet and intranet. UTMB recognizes that material created by its component departments, schools, clinical units, labs and other official sources represent the university to audiences within the institution and far beyond. In the creation of these guidelines, a conscious effort has been made to foster good stewardship of institutional assets and compliance with regulatory guidelines, while promoting consistency, quality and a cohesive, unifying image for the institution.

Guidelines for Users
As good stewards, all users of UTMB’s information resources (including web access, social media and email services), must act professionally and with regard for others. Please refer to Information Resources Security.

Guidelines for Internet Publishers

Publishing on UTMB’s Web Servers
UTMB maintains internet and intranet (web) servers that may be used by university entities, departments, employees, students and registered organizations for publishing information and creating applications to facilitate their roles at UTMB. Content on these pages must be in support of UTMB’s missions of health care, education, research and community service, and may be intended and restricted for internal use, or be made available to the public.

Web pages may not be used for commercial, non-UTMB purposes. They cannot be for the personal or private gain of an individual or group of individuals promoting a private or commercial cause. UTMB official web pages should not contain personal material not directly relevant to the appropriate business of UTMB.

The UTMB Home Page
www.utmb.edu is the official public home page for the university. The home page’s primary objective is to provide an attractive, distinctive, clear and easily navigable point-of-entry to the wealth of information on UTMB’s web servers, and to set a tone and style for other university pages.

An alternate internal home page for employees and students is iUTMB. The UTMB main home page and iUTMB are managed by Marketing and Communications.

Responsibilities of Publishers
Publishers of pages on UTMB’s Internet servers are responsible for:

  • ensuring the accuracy and timeliness of the information presented;
  • offering readers pages that represent professional design and quality presentation;
  • abiding by UTMB’s web publishing, accessibility  and identity standards, and complying with applicable State of Texas web requirements;
  • regularly updating and keeping published information current;
  • understanding and complying with copyright, privacy, intellectual property and libel laws; and
  • responding in a timely fashion to inquiries and comments directed at one’s published material.

Although significant efforts are made to ensure the reliability of the information presented, the university cannot guarantee the complete accuracy and dependability of all the information stored on or retrieved from its internet and intranet servers.

Web pages that give access to or collect any personal, confidential or sensitive data must contain protection from unauthorized access and incorporate appropriate security measures in their design. All pages are required to post a link to the university’s privacy statement.

Pages hosted on UTMB web servers and posted by UTMB web publishers should be “generally accessible” as outlined in university policy. Web pages should load quickly, be free of errors, feature “alt tags,” text-based representations and other features to make the content available to the visually impaired.

UTMB web publishers represent the institution and are responsible for the pages they publish, as well as the links they offer to other resources. Page publishers should not be directing visitors to non-operative sites, to out-of-date sites, or to sites containing irrelevant or inappropriate content. Content providers and page publishers are expected to abide by the highest standards of quality and responsibility.

Required Elements for Sites Published from or Linked to UTMB Web Servers
The following elements need to be included on any official page hosted or managed by UTMB Health or any of its entities

  • The name and contact information of the primary “owner” of a web site
  • Copyright designation with identification/affiliation with UTMB and link to UTMB home page. Example: Copyright © 2013 The University of Texas Medical Branch
  • A link to these site policies and other state-required links, which describes the UTMB policies regarding the web and contains an email address to which comments may be sent
  • Date of creation or most recent revision of the document or site
  • Link to UTMB’s privacy policy

In addition, pages must incorporate:

  • Basic, descriptive meta tags
  • Consistent use of institutional marks, menus and other branding as outlined in UTMB’s Identity System.

A low-impact template for a page footer that meets these state and university requirements is available. Various design templates that incorporate the university's identity standards are also available. More information is available on UTMB's Web Developer Resources site.

Guidelines for Web Site Solicitations
UT System rules and policies govern the use of solicitations, sponsorships and advertising on the web sites of its component institutions. A document, UTS122 - Guidelines for Web Site Solicitation, is available for information on this topic.

Compliance and Complaint Resolution Process
Fundamentally, these guidelines rely on personal responsibility and professionalism on the part of web publishers. For these guidelines to function as intended and to advance the aims of the institution, each publisher must take personal and collective responsibility for what is posted.

Pages are evaluated for compliance at the time they are initially linked, and are subject to random review thereafter. Log file analysis plays a large role in the review process; UTMB pages with high traffic volume are a priority. Review is a task charged jointly to Information Services and the Office of Marketing and Communications, along with representatives from each mission area.

Addressing missing, inaccurate or improperly executed elements should always be a priority. If contacted with a correction or requested update, publishers should review and make the appropriate required change promptly. If appropriate corrective measures are not taken within an agreed upon time, the institutional link will be severed and web server privileges may be forfeited.

UTMB Web Support
UTMB offers and will continue to offer training and resources supporting the use of the internet, intranet and related web applications to the university community.

Please note: These guidelines are currently under review and are subject to being revised. (April 2013)