Title: ARLS Regional Policy: Computer Use Policy
Prepared by: Valerie Bell, Resource Team, Branch Managers – 4/1/2024
Prepared by: Valerie Bell, Resource Team, Branch Managers – 4/10/2024
Approved by: ARLS Board of Trustees – Date: 1/2010, Revised 4/18/2024

I. Purpose

The libraries comprising the Athens Regional Library System are committed to providing free and open access to informational, educational, recreational and cultural resources for library users of all ages and backgrounds.

II. Usage Guidelines

A. Patrons using library computers must read and accept the Library’s Internet Access Policy and agree to abide by the guidelines governing the use of the computers.
B. Public computers are available on a first-come, first-served basis.
C. A library card is not required to access computers. Log in procedures may vary by library
and department; users must follow procedures as set by each library.
D. Due to limited availability of computers and high demand for their use, the Libraries reserve
the right to limit computer sessions. Time limits may vary by library location or department. Patrons may use only one computer at a time.
E. Library staff have the discretion to extend a computer session if others are not waiting
F. Library computers offer a variety of software applications plus access to the Internet.
Scanners, CD burners and card readers may be offered. Availability of software will vary by library location and department.
G. Patrons are responsible for logging out of online accounts and saving personal documents to their cloud storage, USB or other devices. The library is not responsible for the loss of data left on library computers.
H. Library-provided headphones may be available in some libraries or departments. In other
locations, computer users may use personal headphones on library computers; these may be available for purchase from the library.
I. Printing is available at most locations. Price and availability may vary by library and
department.
J. Patrons accessing the library’s wireless network are expected to comply with the library’s
Wireless Use Agreement.
K. Personal belongings should not be left unattended.
L. Food and drink are not allowed in computer areas.

III. Disclaimer

A. Users access the library computer hardware, software and documentation at their own risk. Athens Regional Library System is not responsible for equipment malfunction, loss of data, any damages to the user’s disks, data, etc., or electronic transactions of any type which are related to the public use of library computer resources. This includes damage or injury sustained from invasions of the user’s privacy.
B. Library patrons have the right to privacy to the extent possible in a public setting. Discretion is requested since images may be easily viewed by others, but users should be aware that the location of the computer workstations might enable an online session to be viewed easily by others.

IV. Children’s Computer Usage

A. It is the responsibility of parents or guardians to monitor and supervise their children’s
access to the Internet and its resources.
B. Federal law under the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA) requires filters to be placed on all computers throughout the Athens Regional Library System. The local library board of trustees in each county holds the level of authority for determining the level of filtering on the library’s Internet computers. In some cases, the filtering level on computers within the children’s and teen areas of the Libraries may be more restrictive than those computers within the adult areas of the Libraries.

V. Internet Filtering

Federal law under the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA) requires filters to be placed
on all computers throughout the Athens Regional Library System. See Internet Filtering in the Library in the “Internet Acceptable Use” policy for additional policies governing Internet use in the library.

VI. Unacceptable Uses of Library Computer Workstations

A. Any use of library equipment for illegal purposes is prohibited.
B. Unacceptable use of library computers includes, but is not limited to the following:

a. damaging or attempting to damage computer equipment, wiring, cables or software; b. hacking into the library computer system or any other computer system;
c. theft of any computer equipment or peripherals;
d. tampering with library wiring, cables or equipment; interfering with systems operations,
integrity or security;
e. gaining unauthorized access to another person’s files;
f. sending harassing messages to other computer users;
g. altering or attempting to alter the library computer’s settings;
h. violating copyright laws and software licensing agreements;
i. interfering with or disrupting other computer users, services, or equipment.

C. Patrons violating these rules are subject to penalties as outlined in the Patrons Responsibility and Conduct policy.

VII. Athens Regional Library System Acceptable Wireless Use Agreement

Users of the Athens Regional Library’s wireless connectivity must agree to the
following:

Terms of Use

Failure to follow the terms of use listed below may result in the patron being asked to sever his/her connections and leave the building.

  • Wireless users must not attempt to access or damage the library’s network.
  • While using the Athens Regional Library’s connection, wireless users may not use the
  • Internet in any way that violates a Federal or State Law, including but not limited to copyright, fraud, obscenity and privacy legislation.
  • Wireless users must not behave in a manner that is disruptive to other library patrons or library staff. Please see our policy for Patron Responsibilities and Conduct for details.
  • Earphones must be used if sound is to be activated through a wireless unit.

Disclaimers

  • Library staff members can provide only limited technical assistance for personal devices.
  • Wireless users should configure their own devices and consult their manual for instructions.
  • The Library cannot guarantee that users will be able to connect to the wireless network.
  • The Library assumes no responsibility for any loss or damages done directly or indirectly to personal data or equipment, or for any damage or injury arising from loss of privacy while using the wireless connection
  • Public electric outlets may not be available. Wireless devices must not place chargers and cords in such a way that is hazardous or prevents access to library materials.
  • Library filtering cannot be bypassed for wireless users since this would require staff to alter configuration settings on the user’s device. If unfiltered access to the internet is required, library computers can be enabled for this purpose.
  • The Library reserves the right to limit bandwidth usage on the wireless network.

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