Internet Use and Safety Policy

PURPOSE:

OPL provides access to a broad range of information resources including those available through the Internet. The Internet is a largely unregulated medium of information and communication. OPL does not monitor information provided through the Internet. Information on the Internet is not necessarily current, accurate, or complete. While valuable information is available, OPL must attempt to balance the desire for free unrestricted access to varying information sources against the need to avoid material that may be considered obscene, offensive, or harmful (especially to minor children) by local community standards as defined by applicable state and/or federal laws.

DEFINITIONS:

For the purposes of this policy, minors are defined to include all individuals under the age of 19.

POLICY:

OPL is not responsible for any damages, direct or indirect, or any liability that may arise from a patron’s use of the library’s Internet services.

 User Responsibilities

OPL expects patrons to use resources in a responsible manner. Responsible use of the Internet at the library includes but is not limited to:

  • complying with OPL’s Rules of Conduct
  • refraining from illegal or unethical use of the Internet
  • respecting copyright laws by making only authorized copies of copyrighted materials
  • adhering to library established time limitations
  • not sending, receiving, or displaying inappropriate materials, whether text or graphics, which may reasonably be construed as obscene as determined by local community standards
  • not altering hardware or software
  • not misrepresenting oneself by access code, password or signature
  • respecting the privacy of others
  • abiding by federal, state, local laws and library policies

 Filtering  

OPL uses software that limits exposure to some Internet materials that may be considered obscene, offensive, or harmful by local community standards. To the extent possible, the software will be used to block Internet sites that could be offensive and harmful to minors. However, it must be noted that filtering software may not block all information that may be harmful to minors or visual depictions of materials deemed obscene or child pornography. Filtering software may also block content that is deemed appropriate.

Any patron over the age of 19 who wishes to have access to an unfiltered computer must submit a request, and to the extent practical, staff will disable filtering.

Internet Access by Minors

OPL provides computer access to minors which includes filtered access to the Internet and software to support academic achievement. OPL participates in the federal E-rate funding program and complies with the requirements set forth by the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA)opens a new window.

Parents and guardians are responsible for monitoring their child’s Internet sessions. Filtering software may not be able to filter all information that parents and guardians may deem harmful to minors.

IMPLEMENTATION:

OPL staff and security shall have the responsibility to enforce this policy.

Violations of this policy will result in loss of library privileges or access. Unlawful activities will be referred to the appropriate legal authority.

Approved by the Board of Trustees
of the Omaha Public Library October 21, 1998
Re-approved July 18, 2019

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