DMC Policies & Procedures

Please review these policies and procedures before checking out equipment or using the computer lab facilities.

General Lab Policies

So that the computing labs are comfortable and well-maintained, we ask that everyone abide by the following guidelines.

  1. The DMC primarily serves Rice faculty, staff, and students. Priority in access to equipment and training is given to members of the Rice community.

  2. The DMC supports web authoring, text and image scanning, audio and video editing, and the creation of interactive multimedia. If you would like read email, use word processing applications, or surf the web, please use the Owlnet machines on the first floor of the library.

  3. In the lab, please refrain from loud talking, and use headphones if you are working with audio content.

  4. Please do not eat or drink in the lab areas.

  5. Do not add, change, or remove hardware, and do not load commercial software or games onto the hard drives. DMC staff must approve plugging in peripheral devices prior to connection.

  6. If you run into a problem with an application or computer, please report it to a member of the DMC staff.

  7. The DMC will keep your Rice ID at the DMC service desk if you use the following DMC items: memory card readers, USB drives, and headphones.

  8. Please also see our equipment policy, which governs checking out digital cameras, camcorders and audio recorders.


  1. All the printing services at the DMC are only for Rice students, faculty and staff. 
  2. Because of the cost of consumable printing supplies, we must charge for printing. Since the DMC printers are not on the Owlnet printing network, we can't charge to a student's Owlnet printing account.
  3. We collect payment via patron's Rice Esther account or Rice Interdepartmental Transfer. 

DMC General Borrowing Policies

Borrowers must agree to the following guidelines:

1. Loan of Equipment

  • Only Rice students, faculty, and staff may borrow equipment.
  • You may not check out equipment if your library account is blocked due to fines or overdue items.
  • Borrowers must be trained in using the appropriate piece of equipment before being granted check-out privileges.
  • Borrowers are responsible for all equipment checked out to them after they sign the DMC equipment checkout form.
  • Equipment can be checked out earlier than time it has been reserved for if the equipment is already available, but there   
    are no guarantees that it will be available.
  • It is the borrower's responsibility to ensure that the equipment is in proper working order before checking it out.
  • It is the borrower's responsibility to check the parts and contents of the package against the DMC checkout form.
  • Should equipment become faulty for any reason while in the borrower's charge, return it immediately to the DMC and let 
    the DMC staff know about the problem.
  • Borrowers are responsible for returning all equipment received in the same condition as when received. Equipment must 
    be returned to the DMC and checked in by a staff member during our open hours.
  • Fine will be enforced if the equipment is returned late. There is a $0.50 fee per hour, per item for all checkouts that exceed the due time. 
  • Equipment sign-out privileges may be revoked at any time without warning due to careless handling of equipment or repeated lateness. For example: unattended equipment is considered careless handling.
  • The DMC doesn’t check out equipment over the winter break (i.e. from the Christmas to New Year when the DMC is closed). However, if you have a special academic project you need to work on, let us know and we will do our best to accommodate your request.

2. Terms of Equipment Loan and Renewal

  • Regular equipment checked out at the DMC will be due the third day at 3:00 p.m. For instance, if you check out an item on Monday, 9/22, it is due Thursday, 9/25.
  • Equipment may not be renewed except in special cases and with the approval of the DMC professional staff.
  • Equipment may be returned and checked out again at the DMC service desk. 
  • Extended loans of any equipment will be allowed only with special permission from the DMC professional staff.

3. Lost or Damaged Equipment

  • For any accessories or equipment not returned, if the borrower doesn't communicate with DMC staff(i.e. ignoring emails, voice messages, text messages, and phone calls from the DMC), the borrower will be responsible to pay the full cost of replacement (i.e. the cost of a new item to replace).
  • For any accessories not returned, or accessories returned that are broken, the borrower will be responsible to pay the full cost of replacement (i.e. the cost of a new item to replace).
  • For any equipment under $100.00 that is not returned, or returned which is broken, the borrower will be responsible to pay the full cost of replacement (i.e. the cost of a new item to replace).
  • For any equipment above $100.00 that is not returned, or returned which is damaged beyond repair, the borrower will be responsible to pay the true value of the equipment after regular wear and tear is taken into consideration based on three years (i.e. six semesters) life cycle. For instance, a $550.00 camera that has been used for two years (i.e. four semesters) would have a value of $183.34. The calculation is as follows: $550.00 - (($550.00/6)*4) = $183.34. If this deduction would reduce the replacement fee below $100.00, the borrower would instead pay $100.00.
  • The borrower will be responsible to pay the repair cost (not to exceed the true value of the equipment) of equipment above $100.00 that merits repair. The borrower can keep the damaged equipment after he/she pays the true value of the equipment.
  • Costs assessed against borrower will be imposed on borrower's library account and should be paid at the circulation desk of the library.
  • The value of the equipment is as follows:
Canon Vixia M500 Full HD Camcorder $549   Canon XA10 HD Professional Camcorder $1500
Zoom H4n Audio Recorder $229   Kodak Zi8 Video Camera $180
Zoom H2n Audio Recorder $160            Canon EOS Rebel XT camera body only $549
Sunpak 8001UT tripod $25   Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM Lens  $799
Velbon Videomate 607 Aluminum Tripod $79.95   Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS II Lens $299
Canon Vixia R500 Full HD Camcorder $200   Wide Angle EF 28mm f/1.8 USM Autofocus Lens $449
Rode VideoMic Pro Compact Shotgun Microphone $229   Canon 430EX II Speedlite TTL Shoe-Mount Flash $259
Sony ECMMS907 microphone $75   Sennheiser Microphone System with ME2 Lavalier Mic - A (516-558 MHz) $629
Wacom Intuos4 digital tablet $318   Bescor LED-500K 2 Light Studio Lighting Kit (100-240VAC) $399
Samson C01U USB Microphone $147   Epson EX5200 Multimedia Projector $599
      Azden WLX-PRO Camera Mountable VHF Wireless Lavalier $149
Nikon D3300 DSLR Camera with 18-55mm Lens $500   Rode NTG-2 Condenser Shotgun Microphone $270
Sony HXR-NX3/1 NXCAM Professional Handheld Camcorder $2999.00   Libec tripod $534.00
Manfrotto MVH502A Fluid Head and 546B Tripod System with Carrying Bag $579.88   LS38M(2A)-SP tripod $595.00

Digital Media Commons Equipment Reservation Procedure

Available Equipment/Space

You may reserve the following:

  • camcorder, digital still camera, tripod, audio recorder (for recording audio), microphone (including wireless), etc. For a complete list of equipment for checkout, please click here.
  • computer workstation: video editing, audio editing, or scanning (4 hour reserve)
  • DMC multipurpose room: 4 hour reserve

Please note 

  1. that an item is only available when it is not checked out and not reserved either.
  2. that if you are a temporary staff at Rice, you will not be able to reserve equipment although you can check out equipment. 

Reservation Procedure

  1. Rice faculty, students, and staff may reserve equipment by filling out this online DMC Reservation Form, or by speaking with a DMC staff member at 713-348-3635 or in person (reservations by voice mail are not accepted).
  2. Reservations are made on a first-come, first-served basis and may be requested up to one month in advance.
  3. Please note that the reservation request must be approved by a DMC staff member and must be made at least 24 hours before the requested pick-up time. You will receive an email when your request has been processed. 
  4. Reservations are valid for half day only from 3 p.m. to the closing of the DMC on that day. Pre-approved/long term projects may be given special consideration by the DMC professional staff.

Equipment Pick Up and Return

  1.  You may pick up reserved equipment after 3:30 p.m in the DMC. (Because of high demand for equipment, we cannot arrange for earlier pick-up times.) It will be due the third day by 3 p.m. Given the tight time frame between when equipment is returned and checked out again, we cannot guarantee that batteries will be fully re-charged. If the reserved equipment is not picked up by the end of the day, the reservation will be canceled. You are welcome to call the DMC before 3:30 to see if the requested equipment is already available. If you have reserved equipment and find that you do not need it, please call to cancel the reservation so that others may use it.
  2. The DMC will do its best to honor reservations. However, our equipment is used heavily, and occasionally patrons return items late. If this happens, we will do our best to find alternative equipment or to notify you when the equipment is returned. Please help us ensure the smooth operation of our check-out system by returning equipment on time.
  3. Because the DMC's equipment is expensive, we require more complex procedures than if you were merely checking out a book from Fondren in order to reduce liability and ensure that we can continue providing our equipment checkout program. It is therefore important to allow plenty of time when picking up and returning items, as the process cannot be completed instantly, especially if other patrons are in line to be helped.
  4. Equipment must be returned directly to a staff member at the front desk of the Digital Media Commons, Fondren Library basement B42,  during DMC open hours. Equipment cannot be dropped off to the book return box or left outside of the DMC. If you have difficulty meeting the due date, contact the Digital Media Commons at 713-348-3635 or

File Management in the DMC

  1. All users are responsible for their own files.  We cannot guarantee the integrity of user files. The Digital Media Commons does not perform back-up of user data; therefore, users should store their files on their own USB drive, external hard drive, CD/DVD disc, or their network space. 
  2. For Rice Storage, File Sharing and Backup Solutions provided by Rice IT, go to
  3. Users may not store any files on the drives of Digital Media Commons workstations, except in SaveWorkHere folder located on the desktop. Please save the files in the SaveWorkHere folder in a folder with your email handle as the folder name. Files will be cleaned off the hard disk on the first Monday of every month unless a specific file storage request is filed.
  4. If you are working on a long-term project and need storage space, please fill out a File Storage Request Form at the DMC service desk. If a request form is not submitted, we may inadvertently delete your files during our routine cleaning of the hard drives and we assume no responsibility for those files.

Feel free to call the Digital Media Commons (713)348-3635, or email, or stop by in person at Fondren B42 if you have any questions.