Internet and Computer Use

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Revised June 11, 2012 


I. INTERNET SAFETY POLICY

Acceptable Use of the Internet and Library Public computers

The Library’s public computers allow users to search a wide variety of digital resources, search the Library’s holdings, use Microsoft Office programs, and access the Internet.

A.  Albion District Library is committed to providing access to informational, educational, recreational, and cultural resources for library users of all ages and backgrounds. Recognizing the First Amendment rights of its patrons and their desire for intellectual freedom, equity of access, and confidentiality, as well as the Michigan Legislature’s mandate that the Library restrict access to minors with regard to obscene and sexually explicit materials deemed harmful to minors, the Library has adopted the following policy. The Library will enforce the rules by using filtering software as stated in this policy, including those designed to meet the Legislature’s stated intent of protecting minors from access to that material without interfering with the rights of adult patrons.

 

B. Internet Filtering; Unfiltered Access by Adults; Nonprotected Material

The Internet offers access to a wealth of material that is personally and culturally enriching to individuals of all ages. However, it also enables access to some material that may be offensive, disturbing, illegal, inaccurate, or incomplete.

In order to comply with the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA) and Michigan Public Act No. 212 of 2000 (Act 212) all Library computers with Internet access are filtered to protect against visual depictions that are obscene, child pornography, or harmful to minors. While the use of filters is generally effective, the filters do not guarantee that all offensive material will be blocked. Parents or legal guardians remain responsible for their children’s use of the Internet.

C.  User Responsibilities

·
Log on using your own library card or guest card number.

· Download files using only supported media. The Library is not responsible for damage to your files, including damage caused by virus or spyware.

· Pay for printing from public computers.

· Be aware that what you are accessing may be viewed by those around you.

· Comply with copyright law, licensing agreements and polices of individual Web sites.

· Refrain from activities that interfere with or disrupt the network, users, services and equipment.

· Do not transmit inappropriate material via Internet, electronic mail, or other forms of direct electronic communications.

· Refrain from unauthorized access and other unlawful online activity.

· Do not disseminate personal identification information of minors.

· Comply with the Children’s Internet Protection Act [Pub. L. No. 106-554 and 47 USC 254(h)] and with Michigan Privacy Act Section 6 397.606 Act 455 of 1982

Any adult as defined under state and federal law may request unfiltered access to the Internet as provided in CIPA and upon such a request, the filter shall be disabled.  However, the Albion District Library’s computers may not be used to access material that is not protected speech under the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, including material that is obscene under prevailing definitions, and specifically including but not limited to child pornography.  Violations of this policy may result in the suspension of Library privileges or referral to law-enforcement agencies.

Michigan law prohibits users from allowing minors access to sexually explicit materials harmful to minors.  Internet users shall not permit any minor to view sexually explicit material or any other material deemed harmful to minors.

Filtering software helps protect minors from access to electronic mail, chat rooms, and other forms of direct electronic communication that may be harmful to minors as defined in CIPA and PA 212.  However, filters do not guarantee that such materials will be blocked.  Accordingly, minors shall not access material that is obscene, child pornography, or harmful to minors.

In addition to any other provisions of this Policy, the Library’s computers and Internet access shall not be used by any patron for any purpose that violates Federal or State laws (including, but not limited to, copyright and license laws and “hacking” or other unlawful access), the harassment or bullying of others, or for the sending, receiving, or displaying of any material that is fraudulent or defamatory. Any illegal acts involving the Library’s internet access will result in the City of Albion Public Safety Department being contacted and may be subject to prosecution by local, State, or Federal authorities.

 

The Library reserves the right to end an internet session at any time. The Library reserves the right to suspend or restrict access to or use of the Internet or other Library privileges by patrons who violate this Policy. Patrons who commit succeeding violations may be subject to increased suspensions or restriction on access to or use of the internet or other Library privileges pursuant to the Library’s procedures.*

Filtering software helps protect minors from access to electronic mail, chat rooms, and other forms of direct electronic communication that may be harmful to minors.

PERSONS WHO VIOLATE THE ABOVE RULES ARE SUBJECT TO THE WITHHOLDING OF LIBRARY PRIVILEGES AS FOLLOWS:

FIRST OFFENSE: THE PERSON MUST LEAVE THE LIBRARY FOR THE REST OF THE DAY.

SECOND OFFENSE: INTERNET PRIVILEGES WILL BE SUSPENDED UP TO 1 MONTH.

THIRD OFFENSE: INTERNET PRIVILEGES WILL BE SUSPENDED UP TO 1 YEAR.

EXCEPTION: AT THE DISCRETION OF THE DIRECTOR, PATRONS UNDER 18 MAY BE ALLOWED TO USE THE LIBRARY UNDER PARENTAL SUPERVISION IN LIEU OF HAVING PRIVILEGES SUSPENDED UP TO 1 YEAR.

In the event that a patron feels his/her privileges have been suspended unfairly, he/she may challenge the policy by submitting an APPEAL form found in the appendix within five (5) days after receiving notification of the violation. Appeals of Internet violations must be presented in writing and must include the patron name, date and time of the violation, the violation type and the patron’s reason for challenge to the Internet violation decision.  Upon receipt of a timely appeal, the Library Board will promptly hear the appeal and render and final decision.


D. Time and Other Limits

To access a computer, a patron must sign up at the circulation desk and use his/her own library card number.  An adult visitor who does not have a library card may receive a computer guest pass by signing in and showing identification at the circulation desk; however, a visitor who is a minor must have the completed registration form signed by his/her guardian.

Each individual is limited to one hour per day of computer access.  If no one is waiting, time may be extended.

The Library’s computers are set up for use by a single individual.  A maximum of two persons may sit/work together at one computer, except when individual behavior is disturbing other patrons.

Due to the wide variety of parenting styles, neither the Board of Trustees nor the Library staff can fairly act in place of a parent or guardian concerning the Library’s juvenile patrons.  Parental consent for access to digital information will be required when patrons are under 18 years of age.

Children 12 and younger must use the computers in the Children’s Room.  Patrons 13 or older may use the computers in the Adult Room.  Computers in the teen area are available to those 13 -19 years of age.


E. Wireless Internet  (Revised June 11, 2012)

The Albion District Library allows personal computer equipment to access the Internet via a wireless network throughout the entire building.

Persons utilizing the wireless connection agree to comply with all provisions of the current Acceptable Use of the Internet and Library District Computer policy during Library hours of operation.

  1. The Library’s wireless connection is unencrypted and unfiltered.  Use of the wireless connection is done at the patron’s own risk.  By using this connection, patrons acknowledge that security errors and hacking are an inherent risk associated with any wireless service.  For that reason, patrons expressly agree that they knowingly assume such risk, and further agree to hold the Library harmless from any claim or loss arising out of, or related to, any such instance of hacking or other unauthorized use or access into the patron’s computer.
  1. Wireless access provided for laptop computers is not filtered.  Wireless access is available only to patrons who are adults or minors (under 18 years of age) accompanied by a parents or guardian.  Patrons using their own laptop computers for wireless access are subject to and must comply with all requirements of this Policy.
  1. The Library accepts no responsibility for any software downloaded and/or installed, email opened, or sites accessed while patrons are on the wireless internet connection.  Any damage done to the patron or patron’s equipment from viruses, identity theft, spyware, plug-ins, or other Internet-borne programs is the sole responsibility of the patron; and the patron indemnifies and holds harmless the Library from any such damage.
  1. The Library accepts no responsibility regarding the ability of patron-owned equipment to connect to the wireless network.  Library staff will not change settings on patron equipment.
  1. Any unauthorized use of the Library’s wireless internet is not sanctioned by the Albion District Library.