DRAFT – Computer Use and Internet Safety Policy
In fulfilling its mission to provide informational, educational, and cultural enrichment for the Pomfret community, the Pomfret Public Library offers free computer/Internet access to all Library patrons. The Internet is a global and unregulated information network. As such, it allows patrons to access information and images beyond the scope of the Library’s selection criterion and collection development policies. The Library cannot control the information accessible through the Internet and is not responsible for its content.
- The library provides computers for internet access. Sessions are not typically timed but may be limited to ½ hour if other patrons are waiting.
- Wireless internet is provided for use with personal laptops and other devices
- Patrons may not alter any hardware or software configurations of library computers or download files of any type to the hard drive
- The library is not responsible for accuracy of information received or security of private information (such as credit card information)
- The Library assumes no responsibility for loss of data, or for damages sustained by any patron connecting their own flash drives or devices to a Library computer, or for any liability that may occur from patron use of a computer or the Library’s network.
- Parents are expected to supervise their child’s internet and computer use [see below].
- The computers may not be used for anything illegal, unethical or inappropriate, including misrepresentation of identity, copyright or intellectual property violations, or viewing of pornography.
Inappropriate Network Usage
To the extent practical, steps shall be taken to promote the safety and security of users of the Library’s network when using the internet, including electronic mail, chat rooms, instant messaging, and other forms of direct electronic communications. Specifically, as required by the Children’s Internet Protection Act, inappropriate network usage includes:
In compliance with the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA) [Pub. L. 106-554 and 47 USC 254(h)], the Library filters all access to the Internet through its network and/or computers, to protect against access to obscene visual depictions, child pornography, and/or other material harmful to minors, as required by law.
The term “obscene” as defined in 18 USC Section 1460.
The term “child pornography” as defined in 18 USC Section 2256.
The term “harmful to minors” as defined in 47 USC Section 254(h)(7)(G).
The filter may unintentionally block sites that have legitimate research value and fail to block objectionable content. Library patrons should be aware that Internet filtering software installed for CIPA compliance should not substitute for individual judgment and/or parental involvement and oversight. Library staff will disable filtered Internet access to persons 18 or older who request it for any lawful purpose. Filters will not be disabled on public computers in the children’s department.
Education, Supervision and Monitoring
The Library affirms and acknowledges the rights and responsibilities of parents and caregivers to monitor and determine their children’s access to library materials and resources, including those available through the Internet. Parents or caregivers are responsible for the Internet information selected and/or accessed by their children, and are encouraged to discuss the use of the internet in relation to boundaries, including the sharing of personal information and images, with their children and teens and to monitor their children’s use of the internet. To assist parents, children, and other library patrons, the library will provide Internet safety resources. [see below]