[Emeritiassoc] FW: Microsoft Office for Emeriti
weckman at ohio.edu
Fri Mar 8 08:07:46 EST 2019
The following letter has been sent to us about our university computer service. I hope it clarifies and consoles. I do not understand the ways in which this might affect anyone of us, so all we can do is endure and adjust.
As some of you have recently discovered, the stand-alone version of Microsoft Office is no longer available for you to use. We'd like to let you know why this is happening, the historical context surrounding past availability of this software, what your current options are, and what we are doing to address the situation. Before going into the details, we want to say up front that there are no plans to take away access to email or the online versions of Outlook, Word, Excel, or PowerPoint. Your OHIO email account continues to be part of your emeriti benefits.
The current situation with Office boils down to software licensing. Microsoft recently changed the way they enforce the terms of the university's license, effectively closing a loophole that in the past allowed emeriti to download and install the stand-alone version of Office for free. It's important to note here that the university's license has never included language that specifically granted access to Office for emeriti; however, when usage was tracked solely at the institutional level, that did not matter. With the new process, Microsoft bills the university per user per year following a strict definition of who they consider eligible. They made this change with little advance notice and no consideration for unique higher education roles like emeriti.
OIT is working with OHIO leadership to determine a strategy going forward and will communicate with you as this discussion progresses. In the meantime, we will pay to extend full access to download and use Microsoft Office through June 2020 for emeriti who request a copy. Even if you do not request a license, you can use the online versions of Outlook, Word, Excel, and PowerPoint at no cost to you. These apps can be accessed by logging into catmail.ohio.edu<http://ohio.edu> and clicking the app launcher icon near the upper left of your web browser. Office Online works especially well with OneDrive file storage, a service that emeriti also have free access to.
We apologize for the confusion surrounding this licensing change. To request an extension to your subscription and install the stand-alone version Office, please contact the IT Service Desk<https://www.ohio.edu/oit/help>. Please keep in mind that it could take up to a week for Microsoft to process that extension.
For questions or follow up, please use one of the following methods:
* Call the IT Service Desk at 740-593-1222
* Send an email to servicedesk at ohio.edu<mailto:servicedesk at ohio.edu>
Office of Information Technology
To check the status of OHIO IT services, visit https://status.ohio.edu<https://status.ohio.edu/>.
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