Computer/Internet Use Policy
Public Access to Electronic Information Networks
Libraries make it possible for citizens to have access to the information they need to make informed decisions. As a member of the Illinois Library and Information Network (ILLINET), the Robert W. Rowe Public Library is committed to networking which represents good public policy by maximizing the use of the resources of all types of libraries. Every library user benefits from expanded access to information beyond the four walls of a single library building.
The Robert W. Rowe Public Library and all ILLINET libraries use electronic information networks such as the Internet for a variety of purposes:
1. Access to shared automation systems that provide bibliographic access to the collections of the local library and libraries in the region and across the state
2. Access to the wealth of information resources available via the Internet
3. Access to general and specialized shared licensed databases available to ILLINET member libraries through regional and statewide cooperative programs.
“Global” versus “Local” Resources
Most resources available via the Internet and electronic information networks are “global” resources rather than “local” resources. The Robert W. Rowe Public Library does not and cannot control the information content available through global resources such as information obtained from outside sources via the Internet. Internet resources enhance and supplement resources that are available locally within a library. Library users must be aware that the Robert W. Rowe Public Library does not exercise control over information obtained via the Internet and must keep in mind the following points when evaluating information obtained via the Internet:
1. Information obtained via the Internet may or may not be reliable and may or may not be obtained from a reliable source.
2. Information obtained via the Internet may or may not be accurate.
3. Information obtained via the Internet may or may not be current and up to date.
4. Links to information on the Internet may or may not always be valid, and particular information sites on the Internet may sometimes be unavailable and this unavailability often occurs unpredictably.
5. Certain information obtained via the Internet may be considered controversial by some library patrons.
Library patrons are urged to be informed consumers and carefully evaluate information obtained via the Internet.
The Robert W. Rowe Public Library is not responsible for damages, direct or indirect, arising from a library patron’s use of Internet information resources.
Library Patron’s Rights
Library patrons have certain rights with respect to use of electronic information networks such as the Internet. The Robert W. Rowe Public Library will work with other libraries in the Illinois Library and Information Network to preserve and protect these rights, subject to limitations imposed by licensing and payment agreements with database providers.
1. Library patrons have the right to confidentiality and privacy in the use of electronic information networks to the extent possible given constraints such as proximity of other patrons and staff in public access settings.
2. Library patrons have the right to equitable access to electronic information networks.
3. Library patrons have the right to access and read all library service policies and discuss questions with appropriate library staff.
Patron Assistance and Instruction
The staff of the Robert W. Rowe Public Library may provide assistance to patrons in the use of electronic information networks as time and staff knowledge permits. Printed and on-line documentation and instructions are available at or near points of service.
Use of Equipment and Networks
The Robert W. Rowe Public Library requires that library patrons using electronic information networks such as the Internet do so within the guidelines of acceptable use. The following activities are unacceptable:
1. Use of the electronic information networks for any purpose which results in the harassment of other users.
2. Destruction of, damage to, or unauthorized alteration of the library’s computer equipment, software, or network security procedures.
3. Use of electronic information networks in any way, which violates a Federal or State law.
4. Use of electronic information networks in any way which violates licensing and payment agreements between the Robert W. Rowe Public Library and network/database providers.
5. Unauthorized duplication of copy protected software or violation of software license agreements.
6. Violation of system security.
7. Behaving in a manner that is disruptive to other users, including but not limited to overuse of computer equipment which serves to deny access to other users.
Children’s Access to Electronic Information Networks
The Robert W. Rowe Public Library supports the right of all library users to access information and will not deny access to electronic information networks based solely on age.
The Robert W. Rowe Public Library recognizes that electronic information networks such as the Internet may contain material that in inappropriate for children. In order to use a computer with full access to the Internet, children between the ages of 14-16 must have an Internet Permission Form signed by a parent or legal guardian, This Internet Permission Form will be kept on file at the library.
Children under the age of 14 (minor) must be accompanied by a parent or other responsible adult, age of eighteen (18) or older. Parents, or responsible adult, are expected to remain in the library building to monitor and supervise their children’s use of the Internet. Library staff is unable to monitor children’s use. The library assumes no liability for any access a child might make to sites or information the parent may feel is inappropriate. Parents are encouraged to discuss with their children issues of appropriate use and electronic network safety
The multi-media computers located in the reference area are for public use.
Children under the age of eight (8) need the direct supervision of a parent or adult sitting with them.
Times for computer usage may be reserved. Time may be limited to one half hour time slots but may be extended if no one is waiting.
Nothing is to be put into the hard drive, no files are to be saved there, and no programs are to be installed. Nothing is to be deleted from the hard drive except by library staff.
Use of the computer is free for valid RAILS library cardholders but printing fees will be $.10 per black and white page or $.25 per colored page. Guest passes will be issued at $1.00 per session on the discretion of the library staff.
As not to disturb others, cell phone usage is to be limited to the library foyer or outside.