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Welcome to the Town of Laguna Vista Public Library

Computer & Internet

 ACCEPTABLE COMPUTER AND INTERNET USE POLICY

Introduction

In response to advances in technology and the changing needs of the community, the Laguna Vista Public Library endeavors to develop the collections, resources, and services to meet the cultural, informational, recreational, and educational needs and enhance and increase the personal productivity of the members of Laguna Vista’s diverse community. It is within this context that the Laguna Vista Public Library offers the public its computers, networks, and access to the Internet.

This document constitutes a Library-wide policy for the management of its computers and networks owned and administered by the Laguna Vista Public Library and the resources they make available. In complying with the federal law, the Children’s Internet Protection Act, the Laguna Vista Town Council approved on June 10, 2003 the following categories to be filtered. All material found to be obscene and/or sexual given such terms in section 1460 and 2246 of title 18, United States Code; child pornography given such terms in section 2256 of title 18, United States Code; harmful to minors and, other material deemed locally to be “inappropriate for minors.” CIPA does not require restricting adults from viewing or accessing visual depictions that are harmful to minors and adults can request that the filter be shut off. CIPA does require that minors not view or access visual depictions that may be harmful to them. The Laguna Vista Public Library also must comply with the Neighborhood Children’s Internet Protection Act on safety and security measures for minors in the following categories; E-mail, Chat Rooms, Other direct electronic communications (e.g., Instant Messaging), “Hacking” and other unlawful online activities, Unauthorized disclosure of personal ID info on minors. All children using the Library’s Internet capable computers will be filtered. All adults using the Library’s Internet capable computers will be filtered unless otherwise requested. The policy reflects the ethical principles of our computing environment.

All computer and Internet resources available at or through the Library are provided to all registered Laguna Vista Public Library users. The Laguna Vista Public Library does not have the right or responsibility to act en loco parentis. Parents or guardians, not the Library staff, are responsible for the computer and Internet information selected and/or accessed by their children. Parents, and only parents, may restrict their children, and only their children, from access to the computer network and Internet resources accessible through the Library. Even though the filtering software is updated daily, having this technology does not guarantee that a site, which may be considered as objectionable by the user, will be filtered. Parents are advised to supervise their children’s Internet sessions.

The Laguna Vista Public Library and its Board support the American Library Association interpretation of the Library Bill of Rights’ Access to Electronic Information, Services and Networks adopted by ALA Council on January 24, 1996.

Organizational Purpose

The Laguna Vista Public Library is a “limited public forum.” Limited means it is a place for access to free and open communication, subject to reasonable restrictions as to time, place, and manner for doing so. The Laguna Vista Public Library respects the Patron’s First amendment right to use the Library or any service offered by the Library without any government interference with what is communicated in such facility. The Laguna Vista Public Library’s computers and computing services are to be used to advance the Library’s goals and objectives. Staff may use them only for purposes related to the discharge of their duties as employees, their official business with the Library, and other Library-sanctioned activities. As with filtering for adults, all staff computers with Internet capability will also be filtered.

Legal Use

The computing resources may only be used for legal purposes by the public and staff and shall be guided by the following principles:

1. The Laguna Vista Public Library expressly prohibits any use of library equipment to access material that is illegal as defined by legislation.

2. You must respect the privacy of other users.

3. You must abide by the legal protection provided by copyright and license to programs and data.

4. You must have consideration for the integrity of the Library’s computing ser vices.

Examples of unacceptable or illegal use include, but are not limited to the following:

1. It is illegal to use the Laguna Vista Public Library’s computers or computing services, including the Internet, for any purposes, which violate United States or local laws; or to transmit threatening, obscene, or harassing materials, or to interfere with or disrupt network users, services or equipment. Disruptions include, but are not limited to: distribution of unsolicited advertising, propagation of computer worms and viruses, and using the network to make unauthorized entry to any other machine accessible via the network.

2. It is illegal to use the Laguna Vista Public Library’s computers or computing services, including the Internet to access material found to be obscene, child pornography and, other material deemed locally to be “inappropriate for minors.”

3. Users may not represent themselves as another person.

4. It is assumed that information and resources accessible via the Internet are private to the individuals and organizations that own or hold rights to those resources and information, unless specifically stated otherwise by the owners or holders of those rights. It is therefore not acceptable for an individual to use or download the information unless the owners or holders of rights to those resources or information so have granted permission to do.

5. Malicious or destructive use is not acceptable and may be illegal. Use of our computing facilities in a manner that precludes or significantly hampers its use by others is not allowed. Use of computing facilities for recreational games is not acceptable.

6. Violation of software license agreement.

7. Violation of the Laguna Vista Public Library’s computer system security.

Sanctions for Violations

A person violating these principles of access and use shall be given:

1. First violation, a verbal warning that the person is in violation by his/her actions or conduct and that a record would be made of the incident.

2. Second violation, a verbal warning and record and a written copy of the record and warning mailed to the patron’s residence.

3. Third violation, a verbal warning and declaration that this is the third such violation and that the patron’s privileges of Internet/online access and use is suspended and he/she is barred from such use for a period of thirty days from the date of the third offense.

Violations of the above principles shall be on the following scale:

1. The first suspension of Internet/online privileges for 3 violations shall be for a period of thirty (30) days starting from the date of the last violation.

2. The second suspension shall be for a period of sixty (60) days starting from the date of the last violation.

3. A third suspension, after reinstatement of privileges, shall result in suspension and bar from any terminal access and use for a period of one (1) year from the date of the last violation.

Computer Use Guidelines

1. The Library’s computers and electronic services will be available during the Library’s normal operating hours, except for periodic maintenance.

2. You must sign up at one of the service desks and must present to staff a current Laguna Vista Public Library card with the appropriate stickers affixed. Your Library card will be held while you use the Library’s computing equipment and electronic services and returned to you when your session is completed.

3. Use of the Library’s computers and electronic services is on a first-come, first-serve basis. Those using the computers and electronic services will have a time limit of 1/2 hour (30 minutes) guaranteed assigned, but agree, as a condition of use, that if anyone else needs the Library’s equipment, the user will make the computer equipment available within 5 minutes of being informed by Library staff. A patron, once off a computer shall NOT again gain access to a computer until 1/2 hour (30 minutes) interval has passed unless there are no other patron-users waiting and continued use does not impact use by another patron. Maximum usage per day, per patron is 1 ½ hours (one hour and thirty minutes). This can be waived by the discretion of the Library Director if and only if prior arrangements are made and the purpose is genuine.

4. You may not use your own software programs on the Library’s computers. This will prevent computer viruses that are common on public computers.

5. At no time may files be saved to the Library’s public access hard drives. No exceptions!

Disclaimer

Since the Internet is global electronic network, there is no state/city control of its users or content. The Library only assumes responsibility for the information provided on the home page and the supporting web pages resident on the Library’s server. The Internet and its available resources may contain material of a controversial or offensive nature to you. The Laguna Vista Public Library staff does not monitor and has no control over the information or the links accessed through the Internet, which often change rapidly and unpredictably. Additionally, not all sources on the Internet provide accurate, complete, or current information. You, the user, need to be a good information consumer, questioning the validity of the information you find. The Laguna Vista Public Library assumes no responsibility on connections to other services or sites or of the information obtained.

All Policies and Procedures were approved by Laguna Vista Town Council on June 10,2003