As part of our mission to serve as a free, open archive of culture and knowledge and an ever-changing repository of information in varied formats, we are pleased to provide information resources through the Internet in both library branches and to recommend sites on our Web pages. Library staff will provide on-site log-on and log-off procedures and basic troubleshooting tips, but are not available for in-depth Internet instruction.
We have adopted the American Library Association’s endorsement of Internet access, so that the same standards of intellectual freedom, privacy, and confidentiality that are incorporated into Albany Public Library policies for traditional media shall also be applied to electronic media.
The Internet, as an information resource, enables the Library to provide access to material beyond the confines of its own collection. It allows access to ideas, information, and commentary from around the globe. However, the Internet is currently an unregulated medium. Some material may be offensive, inaccurate, illegal, or incomplete. The availability of information does not constitute endorsement of the content by the Albany Public Library. Users themselves are encouraged to evaluate the validity of all information accessed through the Internet.
All Internet resources accessible through the Library are provided equally to all users. Albany Public Library supports the right and responsibility of parents to direct usage of the Internet by their own children and provides convenient access to filtered search engines. Filtered search engines (which are not under the control of the Library) may restrict access to sites which could be deemed objectionable, but may also limit access to sites which have legitimate research value. No filtering system is completely effective.
The Public Library, unlike schools, does not serve in loco parentis (in place of a parent). Librarians cannot act in the place of parents in providing constant care and supervision of children as they explore the Internet. Library staff will not require that children utilize filtered search engines for their research. As with private usage of all other Library materials, monitoring a child’s access to the Internet is the responsibility of the parent or guardian. Parents and children are encouraged to read “Child Safety on the Information Highway,” available through the sites listed below.
CONDITIONS OF LIBRARY COMPUTER USE
- Users may not install or download ANY program or software updates onto the library computers. Files may be downloaded onto floppy disks (available for sale at the Reference and Children’s Desks) and users may suggest useful software for library installations. Ask a librarian if you need assistance.
- Users may not alter or damage existing hardware or software, including but not limited to changing configurations, settings, and preferences. Creating auto-logins to your personal accounts is not allowed. This creates problems for other users and is a risk to your own privacy.
- Users may make only authorized copies of copyrighted or licensed software or data. Costs for printing are posted on the printers.
- It is not acceptable to use Internet access for any purposes that violate U.S. or state laws. As per ORS 167.060 to 167.095, it is a crime to display obsene material to minors. Violators will be prosecuted. Nor is it acceptable to transmit or receive material that is threatening, obscene, harassing, or child pornography, 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.
- Children under ten years of age must be accompanied by an adult when using any of the public computers, including the Internet. Older children may use the Internet independently; however, monitoring what a child views on the Internet remains the responsibility of the parent or guardian.
- Due to space limitations and considerations of noise and convenience, we strictly limit the number of persons who may share one Internet station to two individuals.
- The “Library Rules of Conduct” policy also applies to the use of the Internet and failure to comply with the policies defined in these documents may result in the revocation of all Internet use privileges at both branches of the Library. (See Procedures Manual, Violations of Internet Acceptable Use Policy.)