Internet Access Policy
The Monona Public Library offers its patrons access to the Internet from LINK terminals and Internet workstations in the Library and computer lab.
The library does not monitor and has no control over the information found through the Internet and is not responsible for its content, timeliness, or accuracy. While the Internet and the World Wide Web provide a vast and valuable variety of information and resources, not all sources on the Internet are accurate, complete or up-to-date. It is possible that individuals might access information that they find offensive or disturbing to themselves or their children. The Internet is a global entity that does not fall under the control or governance of any single agency, government or organization. The availability of networked information via library computers does not constitute the library's endorsement of the content of that information. The library does not warrant information found on the Internet to be accurate, authoritative, factual, timely or useful for patrons' purposes. If any patron believes that information obtained via library terminals is inaccurate or offensive, the patron should contact the original producer or distributor of the information.
The Library does not select the material on the Internet and has no means or statutory authority to assure that only constitutionally protected material is available on the Internet. The authority to determine what is illegal content rests with the courts as defined in Wisconsin and Federal statutes.
Access, use, or dissemination of information via the Internet in the Library
is the responsibility of the user. In the case of minors, it is a joint responsibility
of the user and the parent or guardian. Because parents or guardians may feel
that information available through the Internet is not suitable for viewing
by children in their care, supervision is advised.
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The library may set time limits so that all patrons seeking access will have an appropriate opportunity. The library reserves the right to end an Internet session when time limits are exceeded.
- Computers are available only during open library hours and are available on a first-come, first-serve basis. All use of computers in the library must end when the library closes.
- Users, eight years or younger, must be accompanied by a parent, legal guardian, caretaker, or sibling over 12 years of age to use a computer. The child may not be left alone at the library.
- Normally, Internet sessions are 60 minutes in length. More time, not to exceed two 60-minute sessions total per day, may be used only if there are no other patrons waiting for Internet access. Continued use beyond the first 30 minutes does not guarantee a full hour–the library reserves the right to terminate a session to make an Internet station available for another patron. With prior approval of the staff, patrons may request to use the library computers beyond one hour for purposes including but not limited to Internet education.
- Persons who use the computers assume responsibility for the hardware and software during their use. Software and personal belongings should not be left unattended. The Monona Public Library will not be responsible for injuries or damages to possessions of individuals or groups resulting from the use of the computers.
As it does with other library resources, the Library will provide training on electronic resources. It will also make information available to help parents and guardians in their efforts to exercise their rights and responsibilities regarding their own children's use of electronic resources.
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. The Monona Public Library supports the right of each family to decide what is appropriate Internet use for its children. The responsibility for what minors read or view on the Internet rests with parents or guardians.
The following are recommended guidelines for parents and guardians to ensure that children have positive online experiences, whether at home or in the library.
- Use the Internet as a family. Join your children in Internet exploration. Explore the wide range of available information and tell your children about sites you consider inappropriate for them.
- Encourage children to use sites recommended on the library's homepage and counsel them to avoid sites you consider unsuitable.
- Provide guidelines for your children on the amount of time they spend online, just as for television viewing.
- Instruct children NEVER to give out personal information (name, address, password, telephone number, credit card number) online.
- Provide children with guidelines on acceptable use of electronic resources, including email and chat rooms.
- Teach children to be good online consumers. As with print information, consider the source, date, and accuracy of online information.
The library's computers may be used only for legal purposes. Users of all ages must abide by the following restrictions. Unacceptable uses include, but are not limited to the following:
- Transmitting of threatening, harassing, or obscene materials including but not limited to communications, postings, or attachments;
- Libeling, slandering or maliciously offending other users;
- Disrespecting the privacy of others by misrepresenting oneself as another user;
- Attempting to modify or gain access to files, passwords, or data belonging to others;
- Attempting to crash, degrade performance of or gain unauthorized access to the library’s computer systems and networks;
- Modifying or damaging equipment, software or data belonging to the library or other users.
- Exposing children to harmful materials. Sec. 948.11 of the Wisconsin Statutes, among other things, makes it a crime to expose children to pictures or images of nudity, sexually explicit conduct, or physical torture or brutality that appeal to the prurient, shameful or morbid interests of children, are patently offensive to prevailing adult standards regarding materials suitable for children, or lack serious literary, artistic, political, scientific or educational value for children.
These restrictions also apply in email and chat room environments accessed through library computers. If an individual or group of Internet users creates a disturbance that limits the effective use of the library by others, they will be asked to correct their behavior, disband, and/or leave the building as appropriate.
U.S. Copyright law (Title 17 US Code) prohibits the unauthorized reproduction or distribution of copyrighted material, except as permitted by the principles of fair use. Users may not copy or distribute electronic materials, including electronic mail, text, images, programs or data, without the explicit permission of the copyright holder. Any responsibility for the consequences of copyright infringement lies with the user. The library expressly disclaims any liability or responsibility resulting from such use. The library expressly disclaims any liability or responsibility arising from access to or use of information obtained through its electronic information systems, or any consequences thereof.
This policy will be reviewed and amended, if needed, on at least an annual basis.
Approved November 20, 1996
Revised June 19, 2002