New Bedford Free Public Library Internet Policy
To enhance the fulfillment of our mission, the Library is pleased to provide Internet access. The New Bedford Free Public Library endorses the Library Bill of Rights, the Freedom to Read Statement of the American Library Association (ALA), and ALA’s “Access to Electronic Information, Services, and Networks: An Interpretation of the Library Bill of Rights.”, consistent with all applicable federal, state, or local laws.
The New Bedford Free Public Library only provides access to the Internet. The Library cannot control and is not able to monitor any information on the Internet for either content or accuracy. The individual user is the ultimate judge of the appropriateness, usefulness and value of all material accessed via the Internet. In the case of minors, this responsibility rests with their parents or legal guardian. In no case does the display of any material on the Library’s Internet workstations constitute an endorsement by the Library of the material’s content and point of view. The New Bedford Board of Library Trustees, the library staff, and the City of New Bedford are not liable for any negative consequences that may occur as a result of using the Library’s Internet connection.
This policy applies to all use of public access workstations located at any of the facilities of the New Bedford Free Public Library. Internet access through the SAILS Library Network, whether on computers located at the New Bedford Free Public Library or through remote access, is also covered by a separate SAILS Internet Use Policy.
Patrons make use of the Library’s public access workstations at their own risk.
Minor’s Use of the Internet
Consistent with registering for a library card to establish borrowing privileges, a person under the age of 18 who wishes to use the Library’s public Internet workstations is required to submit a registration form signed by his/her parent or guardian. Parents are strongly encouraged to be involved with their children’s use of this equipment.
Level of Assistance
Users are encouraged to learn about the Internet by checking out material the Library has on the subject. Staff can assist with basic questions. One-on-one training sessions can be scheduled subject to the staff’s availability.
Guidelines for Use
Patrons are expressly prohibited from using the library equipment to:
- access material that is obscene, child pornography, or “harmful to minors”, consistent with any applicable federal, state, or local law.
- threaten, libel and harass others, including sexual harassment
- alter, destroy or damage equipment, software or data
- disrupt or participate in the unauthorized monitoring of electronic communications
- make unauthorized copies of copyright-protected material
- participate in the unauthorized use of computer accounts, using access codes and/or network identification assigned to others.
- use computer communications facilities in ways that unnecessarily impede the computing activities of others
- tamper with the computer system security
- intentionally violate software license agreements
- intentionally violate network use policies.
The Library Board of Trustees is the final authority in determining appropriate use. Violations of the New Bedford Free Public Library Internet Policy will be dealt with in a serious and appropriate manner, which may include loss of privileges and/or prosecution by local, state, or federal authorities. This policy and agreement is subject to review and change, as deemed necessary by the trustees.
Workstations and Schedule
Public access is permitted only at workstations identified by appropriate signage, and during announced periods of availability.
Responsibility of Staff
Library employees are responsible for implementing the Internet use guidelines stated above. Staff is expected to take prompt and appropriate action to enforce the guidelines and is authorized to terminate any session by anyone who fails to comply.
User Agreement Required for Internet Access
A completed User’s Agreement Form is required along with either a valid SAILS Library Network card or 1 form of identification. Staff will photocopy the identification and attach it to the completed form. In accordance with Massachusetts state law, all library records are confidential. A person under the age of 18 who wishes to use the Library’s public workstations must submit a registration form signed by his/her parent or guardian. Parents are encouraged to be involved with their children’s use of this equipment.
- Patrons may reserve one 60 minute block of Internet time per day.
- Reservations will be held for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, a computer will then become available for walk in use.
- Workstations may be used on a first come first served basis if they are not currently in use.
- Whenever possible, visitors to the City of New Bedford who wish to access email or conduct other business online, will have access to computers for a maximum of thirty (30) minutes. Visitors are also required to complete User Agreement Form and provide one (1) form of identification as described above.
Training and Equipment
- Users are encouraged to learn about the Internet by checking out material the New Bedford Public Library has on the subject. Staff can only assist you with basic questions.
- Printing of information is available for a nominal fee for each page printed. For more information, please speak to the library staff.
Accuracy and Appropriateness of Information
- The New Bedford Public Library provides access only to the Internet. The library cannot control and is not able to monitor any information for either content or accuracy. The individual user is the ultimate judge of the appropriateness, usefulness and value of all material. In the case of minors, this responsibility rests with their parents or legal guardian.
- In no case does the display of any material on the library’s equipment workstations constitute an endorsement by the New Bedford free Public Library of the materials content and point of view.
- The New Bedford Free Public Library Board of Trustees, the library staff, and the City of New Bedford are not liable for any negative consequences that may occur as a result o using the library’s Internet connection.
*Adopted by the Board of Library Trustees
May 26, 2015