Computer and Internet Policy

Purpose. Our purpose is to provide access to information and research resources which complement, expand, and extend the traditional resources available in library- owned materials, and to improve access to these resources for all users of the library. The Monroe Community Library endorses and supports the democratic principle of every user’s right to the same free and unrestricted access to electronic information as it does to print information.

Nature of the Internet. Monroe Community Library has no control over the Internet and its resources, and assumes no responsibility for the quality, accuracy, or currency of any Internet resource. Patrons have the responsibility of evaluating the validity and the appropriateness of all online sources.

Wireless Access. Monroe Community Library offers wireless network access to its Internet connection. Use of this connection is subject to the same restrictions and uses as the library’s public computers, as detailed in this policy.

Staff Assistance. Library staff is available to provide limited assistance for basic start up procedures.

Definitions. Key terms are as defined in the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA).

Children. Children must demonstrate the ability to use a computer without assistance or be accompanied by an adult. As required by the Children’s Internet Protection Act, the Neighborhood Children’s Internet Protection Act, and the Protecting Children in the 21st Century Act and as with other library resources, parents or legal guardians are responsible for monitoring and restriction of a minor’s access to the internet, and the safety and security of minors when using electronic mail, chat rooms, and other forms of direct electronic communication. The Library cannot assure that the CIPA filters will block every item that may be a concern to every parent. The Library and its staff are not responsible for material selected or accessed by children. A public library, unlike schools, does not serve in loco parentis (in place of parent).

Access to Inappropriate Material. To the extent practical, technology protection measures (or “Internet filters”) shall be used to block or filter Internet, or other forms of electronic communications, access to inappropriate information. The Internet filtering software is provided through the Maine School and Library Network (NetworkMaine).

Specifically, as required by the Children’s Internet Protection Act, blocking shall be applied to visual depictions of material deemed obscene or child pornography, or to any material deemed harmful to minors.

Subject to staff supervision, technology protection measures (“Internet filters”) may be disabled for adults.

In the case of minors, technology protection measures may be minimized only for bona fide research or other lawful purposes.

Inappropriate Use. Prevention of inappropriate network usage according to the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA) includes:
unauthorized access, including so-called ‘hacking,’ and other unlawful activities; and unauthorized disclosure, use, and dissemination of personal identification information regarding minors.

Other unacceptable uses by patrons of all ages, include but are not limited to:

• Transmitting threatening or harassing materials.
• Impersonating another user.
• Disrupting library service (attempting to crash, degrade performance, or gain unauthorized access to the Library’s computer systems and networks.)
• Altering, modifying or damaging the Library’s equipment, software, or computer settings.

Failure to abide by the provisions of this policy will result in the loss of Library privileges including, but not limited to, use of the Library computers. Illegal acts involving the public computers will be subject to prosecution by local, state and federal authorities.

User Responsibilities. Abide by 30-minute time limit when others are waiting.
Patrons may download information from the Internet to their own device or their own accounts.

The library is not responsible for damage to personal accounts, data, or equipment due to system malfunction or for any other reason.
Do not install software or change the configuration of library computers.
The user is responsible for any damage caused to library computers.
Privacy cannot be guaranteed; all computers are in public areas and must be used as such.

The library’s electronic resources may be used only for purposes that are legal and conducive to a public environment.
Users may not download or save anything to the Library’s hard drive or network drive.

Acceptance of Policy. Use of the Library’s public access computers or wireless is considered de facto acceptance of these policies. Violation may result in warnings or exclusions from use.

Review. The Policy on Internet Access, like all Library policies, will be reviewed periodically and revised as necessary.

Revised and Approved by the Monroe Community Library Board of Trustees June 9, 2021. Replaces the Internet Safety Policy adopted at a public meeting January 29, 2020.