COMPUTER & ELECTRONIC DEVICE USE POLICY
Computer Use Policy
The First Regional Library offers access to personal computers and other electronic devices for public use free of charge as part of its mission to be the people’s place for lifelong learning. These provide access to Internet, electronic resources and software programs such as the Microsoft Office Suite. The purpose of this policy is to ensure that patrons using First Regional Library computers and other electronic devices have a positive experience.
Basic personal knowledge of computer use, software applications, and some knowledge about how to access the Internet are expected at the time patrons ask to use the Library’s computer equipment. Library staff will provide limited assistance as time permits when asked but cannot enter data for patrons. Manuals or other documentation will be offered when available.
Patrons may use any of the Library’s public computers if they are not in use. If all are busy, patrons may use the Computer Reservation Station to make a reservation. Patrons will be granted 30 minutes on the computer. If there are no patrons waiting or if the patron is completing an online job application, resume, test, etc., sessions may be extended by the staff. However, the reservation system will not allow extra time on a computer for which there is a reservation. Laptops are available for longer projects.
Some library computers are designated for specific functions, i.e. to provide access to the Library’s public catalog or make a computer reservation and should only be used for their intended purpose.
Patrons may not save work on library computers. Patrons may save any work to the cloud or to removable storage devices. Storage devices are available for purchase at the Circulation Desk. Patrons may also choose to print their work in the Library, using the Library’s printer. The cost for printing is provided before the job is sent to the printer. Patrons must pay to pick up their work at the Circulation Desk.
Patrons must close all programs, log out of any personal accounts, and end their session before exiting the public access personal computers.
Some portable devices (including laptop computers, tablets, etc.) are available for general use within the library for a period of up to two hours. Patrons with a valid library card in good standing and age 13 or older are eligible to checkout portable devices for in-library use. Patrons who check out these devices will be responsible for any loss or damage sustained prior to its return to the circulation desk.
Some electronic devices are available to check out overnight or longer. A patron must be 18 or older, have a valid library card and be in good standing to check out these devices. An ID with a valid address must also be shown at the time these devices are checked out. It is preferred that electronic devices be returned to the library from which it was checked out.
Wireless Internet access is available at all branches. All setup and configuration of wireless devices is the responsibility of the patron. The Library does not assume any responsibility for the safety of equipment or for configurations, security, or data files resulting from connection to the Library’s wireless service. Virus and security protection is the responsibility of the patron. Library staff may provide general information about the wireless network, but they are not allowed to configure patrons’ wireless devices.
Patrons are required to respect the Library’s public computer property, including those computers designated to access the Library’s catalog. Report any technical problems to a library staff member immediately. Patrons caught hacking, destroying library computer hardware or software in any way, accessing the Internet in inappropriate ways or unlawful purposes, or otherwise violating Library’s policies and guidelines may be asked to back out of an inappropriate site, asked to leave the library and/or may have their computer privileges revoked (temporarily or permanently). Patrons consistently keeping borrowed computers beyond the due date may be blocked from checking out computers or other electronic devices. Patrons who fail to return electronic resources may be prosecuted by local courts.
All users of library computers must abide by federal and state laws, including MS Code 97-5-27; MS Code 97-5-29), the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA – Public Law 106-554) and the policies of First Regional Library. Viewing of pornography in public is against the law and the police will be called.
In accordance with the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA – Public Law 106-554), all public use computers utilize filtering software. This filtering device is designed to block the majority of obscene sites as that term is defined in section 1460 of Title 18, United States Code; and to screen out child pornography sites, as that term is defined in section 2256 of Title 17, United States Code; and sites which may be harmful to minors, as defined in section 1703, Public Law 106-544. No device will filter out all objectionable materials, nor will the use of a filtering device render the use of the Internet as universally safe. Patrons accidentally opening objectionable sites must immediately exit the site. Patrons may request unfiltered access to a specific website and the request will be granted at the discretion of the library staff.
Patrons are expected to use the Internet for lawful purposes only. Patrons cannot send, receive, or display inappropriate materials defined as text or graphics which may reasonably be construed as obscene. Patrons who choose to use the Library’s public computers for Internet access waive the right to any claim against the First Regional Library, its member libraries, its employees, trustees and agents arising from the use of the Internet. Staff can temporarily unblock a site for research purposes for adults or parents of minors but the user must abide by all state, federal and First Regional computer use policies
Parents are responsible for their children’s behavior in the Public Library when they are using the Internet. The Library’s Internet filtering device is set to block the majority of the so-called objectionable sites, but parents must realize that filtering mechanisms are not foolproof. Parents who are concerned about their children’s use of the Library’s electronic resources are encouraged to personally provide any necessary guidance (e.g., parents may wish to sit beside their children at the computer area in the Library).
Patrons who choose to use the Library’s public computers or other devices for Internet access waive the right to any claim against the First Regional Library, its member libraries, its employees, trustees and agents arising from the use of the Internet
Any patron whose computer privileges are revoked for more than two (2) days may request that this decision be re-considered by writing a letter to the Library Director giving the reason for reconsideration. If the Director decides not to reinstate computer privileges, the patron may request that the Regional Library Board review the case. The Regional Library Board’s decision will be final.
Adopted: August 20, 1998
Revised: October 14, 1999
Revised: May 16, 2002
Revised: April 21, 2005
Revised: April 12, 2007
Revised: October 17, 2007
Revised: October 14, 2010
Revised: May 19, 2012
Revised: September 19, 2013
Revised: November 17, 2016
Revised October 10, 2017