Muenster Public Library

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Computer Policy

Computer Policy

The Library provides public-access computers to promote computer literacy and to help satisfy the educational and informational needs of individuals in the community.  Computers are available for recreational use when not needed for education or information.

A.  ELIGIBILITY

To operate a computer the patron must read the policies and procedures, sign an Acceptable Use Contract, and demonstrate ability to use the computer.  This form will be kept on file at the Library.  An orientation session to acquaint the user with the equipment and software may be made by appointment.

In addition to the above requirements, a patron under the age of 18 must also obtain the signature of a parent or guardian on the Contract.  Children under 10 years of age must have a parent or guardian physically present while using the computers, as well as, a signed consent form.  Parents can appoint another adult to monitor their children.  This person’s name must be on file in our Library on their permission form.

B.  CONDITIONS OF USE

The user is fully responsible for equipment, materials, and software provided by the Library and will pay the cost of repair or replacement (plus shipping and handling) should any damage occur.  This cost includes any fees of consultants needed to restore damaged files.  Responsibility includes software damaging Library hardware.

Patrons who are using the computer for recreational activities, must yield to those who need the computer for educational or information purposes.

The Library will not be held liable for user copyright infringement.

C.  STAFF RESPONSIBLITIES

 The Library Director/Library Manager and Library Board will establish procedures for scheduling, fees, and supplies that will make equitable access available within the limits of resources and the security of Library equipment and system software.

A catalog of available software will be provided.

A log of computer use and downtime will be kept.

D.  INTERNET POLICY

The Muenster Public Library provides some access to the Internet to better meet the information and education needs of the citizens of Muenster.  The Internet enables the Library to provide a depth and amount of information not available in its own collection.

The Internet allows access to ideas, information and commentary from around the globe.  Currently, however it is an unregulated medium.  As such, while it offers access to a wealth of material that is personally, professionally, and culturally enriching, it also enables access to some material that may be offensive, disturbing, and/or illegal.  The Library cannot totally control or monitor the vast amount of material accessible via the Internet.  Individual users are responsible for their use of Internet resources.  

Users are not permitted to display any images containing nudity, obscenity, or graphic violence.  Patrons will receive one warning regarding this rule; another violation will result in a loss of library Internet privileges.  Acceptability of screen displays will be left to the discretion of the library staff, and they have the right to terminate the display.  Parents have the right and responsibility to determine and monitor their children’s use of these resources.  The Library staff may select and use a filter on incoming data.

E.  CONDITIONS OF USE OF THE INTERNET

The Library computer policies and procedures also apply to those who are using the computer for access to the Internet.

The Library Director/Library Manager and Library Board will establish procedures that will make the Internet available equitably to all Library patrons.

Users who fail to comply with Library policies and procedures may lose their Internet privileges.

IX.    PROCEDURES FOR PUBLIC USE OF COMPUTERS

Patrons will read the policies and sign an Acceptable Use Contract before using the computer.  A copy of Library policies that apply to users will be given to each person when they sign a Contract.

Users will be reminded of the copyright laws by a notice near the computer table.

A catalog of available software will be provided.

A.    SCHEDULE OF USE

Patrons must sign in at the front desk before working on the computers at each visit.  Patrons must also sign out at the front desk and identify how the computer was used (Internet, games, word processing, publishing, etc.) when they are finished.

Computers are assigned on a first come first serve basis.  A patron will be allowed access to all available computers for a maximum of 1 hour per day.  The only exception to this policy is if there are no other patrons waiting for the use of the next available computer.

Drop-in users may sign up for time if it is available.

For Library use, staff may reserve time according to the above policy.

B.    SUPPLIES AND LIBRARY RESOURCES

Patrons may not load their own disk and/or program onto the Library computers.  Disks may be purchased from the Library for $1.00.

Patrons may not store files on the hard disk (drive C).  The Library is not responsible for data stored on the hard drive.  

Users will not alter, modify, add, delete, or destroy equipment, software, or files belonging to the Library.

Patrons may print information from the Internet at the cost of $0.10 per page for laser prints.  A $0.20 per page will apply for anything printed in color.  Please check the length of your document before you print, as some documents can be quite lengthy. 

Parents are encouraged to monitor their children during this period for they will be charged for prints made in error.

The user will be responsible for any connect charges incurred by use of the modem.

Library staff is available for general assistance only when not needed at the circulation desk or for reference questions.

C.    INTERNET PROCEDURES

Library staff will administer a password for Internet access.  This password will not be shared with the public.  When a user wishes to begin an Internet session, a staff member will make the connection.

The Library staff may select and use a filter on incoming data.

Internet use will be logged with other computer use.

Users are expected to obey all federal, state, and local laws.

Prohibited uses:

•    The Internet is not available for chat rooms and/or newsgroups.

•    Users may not copy resources that are protected by copyright.  The Muenster Public Library reserves the right to confiscate illegal copies that are created with our equipment.

•    Users may not access information without the effective consent of the owner or licensee of those resources.  This act may be considered a misdemeanor crime under Texas state law (SECTION 1. Title 7, Chapter 33, Section 33.02a).

•    Users may not interfere with the operation of any computer.  They may not alter, damage, or destroy data or computer programs.  These acts may be considered a misdemeanor or felony crime under Texas state law (SECTION 1. Title 7, Chapter 33, Section 33.02a).

•    Users may not save, download, or copy any of the following as it interferes with the performance of the Library’s main server.

1.    Audio of any type.

2.    Video of any type.

3.    MP3 activity of any type.

This policy for use of computers is subject to revision at any time.  Patrons must abide by the current policy.  The Friends of the Muenster Public Library adopted this policy on September 17, 2002.