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IT Service Status
IT Service Status

Northwestern University Policy on Cable, Satellite, and IP Delivered Television Services


All members of the Northwestern Community and users of the University network.

Policy Statement:

  • NUIT is designated as the sole authorized agent to interface with Northwestern University's television provider(s) for the addition, changing, and removal of individual service connections in any University building.
  • A University entity or individual may not add, change, or remove television service or install wiring for television in any location. All inquiries about the installation of television service or about changing existing television service must be directed to NUIT and not the television service provider.
  • Anyone wishing to display television content in a publicly accessible area must ensure that only acceptable content is displayed (see the guidelines below for the definition of acceptable content).

NUIT will remove television access from any location found to be in violation of the above mentioned policies. It is the responsibility of each customer to make sure that all individuals who control programming in public spaces are aware of and adhere to this policy.

Background Issues:

Guidelines on the Display of Television Programming

Content Guidelines: Information vs. Entertainment Providers

Broadcast stations (e.g., WGN, WMAQ, WBBM, WTTW, WLS, WFLD) and providers of current news (e.g., CNN, C-SPAN, MSNBC, FoxNews) generally do not place restrictions on the types of venues where their content can be displayed. These providers generally want the community-at-large to have access to their information.

Entertainment, sports, and other information providers (including, but not limited to, Disney, A&E, Cartoon Network, AMC, Nickelodeon, Discovery Channel, History Channel, and ESPN) do not permit public performances, but do allow viewing by a group in a private venue.

Specialty providers (including, but not limited to, HBO, Cinemax, Starz, and Showtime) forbid group viewing regardless of public or private accessibility.

Any display of entertainment or other informational or restricted programming is a violation of the provider's performance rights, and may put the University and the party making the display in jeopardy for any legal action taken by the content provider.

Location Guidelines: Public vs. Private Venue

A public viewing or performance is considered to occur when the television display can be viewed in an area that is accessible by the general public. This includes, but is not limited to, the following types of locations:

  • building lobby
  • entrance hall
  • public auditorium
  • other public assembly area

In contrast, a private viewing is considered to take place in locations that are not openly accessible to the general public. This includes, but is not limited to, the following types of locations:

  • private cafeteria or dining hall
  • private waiting room
  • departmental conference room
  • lounge
  • classroom

Related Policies:

Important Dates

Last Review Date:

  • December 2016
  • December 2013
Original Issue Date:
  • March 2003

Revision Dates:

February 2006, March 2009