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Guidelines for Using External Web 2.0 Services

Some staff members in different departments have expressed interest in adopting external web services such as Dropbox, Facebook, etc. for teaching, research, administration or departmental purposes. By December 2013, ITS and Dr Iain Doherty, Ex-Director of EPSU, prepared the document “Draft Guidelines on External Web 2.0 Services” based on the document “University of Edinburgh Information Services Guidelines for Using External Web 2.0 Services”, which is subject to the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.

EPSU and ITS had jointly held two workshops in January 2014 for staff to discuss the “Draft Guidelines”.  Twelve academic and 44 non-academic staff members participated in the workshops and gave valuable opinions. Mr Joe Poon, the University’s Data Privacy Officer, was present to answer questions on data privacy issues.  Afterwards, ITS, Dr Doherty and Mr Poon continued to polish and refine the draft document.  At its meeting on May 27, 2014, the IT Committee endorsed the Guidelines for release.  In July 2014, ITS announced to department heads and all staff that the Guidelines together with two Case Study documents illustrating the use of the Guidelines were downloadable at

The two case studies are:
•    Dropbox repository for sharing of files among a teacher and a group of students
•    Facebook Group as a departmental site for dissemination of information