Internet Acceptable Use
Internet Acceptable Use Policy
The Mission of the Ashtabula County District Library is to enhance the quality of life for Ashtabula County residents by encouraging and meeting their needs for reading, learning, and discovery.
Integral to this Mission is the provision of meeting the information needs of the diverse population in Ashtabula County. The Library endeavors to develop collections, resources, and services to meet these needs. It is within this context that the Ashtabula County District Library offers access to the Internet via the Ohio Public Library Information Network (OPLIN).
Since the Internet is a global electronic network, there is no state/county control of its users or content. The Library cannot censor access to materials nor protect users from offensive information. Parents or legal guardians of minor children must assume responsibility for their children’s use of the Internet through the Library’s connection.
Parents and children are encouraged to read Child Safety on the Information Highway, reprinted and distributed with permission of the National Center of Missing and Exploited Children. A copy is available at the Circulation and Reference desks.
The Library’s computers access the Internet, which is a global entity with a highly diverse user population, and Library patrons use it at their own risk. As with other library materials, it is the patron or the parent or legal guardian of minor children who assumes responsibility for supervising access to Internet resources in the Library. Parents should let their children know if there are materials which they do not want them to use. Parents should supervise their child’s Internet sessions.
The Internet allows users to connect to networks of resources outside the Library. In offering Internet access, library staff cannot control access points which often change rapidly and unpredictably. Not all sources on the Internet provide accurate, complete or current information. Users need to be good information consumers, questioning the validity of the information. If you feel that information you have obtained via the Internet is inaccurate or offensive, we suggest you contact the original producer/distributor of that information.
The Ashtabula County District Library supports the principle of open and equitable access to information and ideas regardless of the format in which they exist. The Library upholds the right of each person to electronically access constitutionally protected information and ideas in libraries.
The Ashtabula County District Library complies with the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA). All computers with Internet access, including staff computers, will operate with filtering technology that, to the extent technically possible:
- Prevents access to visual depictions that are obscene, and
- Prevents access to child pornography, and
- Prevents access to visual depictions that are harmful to minors.
All children (under the age of 18) may only access filtered Internet content. The Library will unblock erroneously blocked web sites upon any request by a minor. The Library will disable the entire filter upon any request by users 18 or over, for any lawful purpose.
The Library filters inadmissible Internet websites on all library computers using a filtering service provided by WebSense. The WebSense Internet Filtering System, a technology protection measure, allows the Library to regulate Internet access on the library’s public access computers. Featuring the largest database of categorized websites in the technology industry. WebSense maintains a master database that has flagged over 4 million sites. The Library filters the following categories of website: “visual depictions” that constitute “obscenity”, child pornography, or, in the case of minors’ use of the Internet sites that are “harmful to minors” (obscene for minors, essentially).
WebSense automatically updates its database of websites. This update allows the Library to filter out prohibited sites as they are identified. However, new sites are added to the Internet daily, and they are not always identified immediately. No Internet filtering system is 100% foolproof.
If you find a site that is questionable, please report the URL address of the website to the staff. WebSense searches the Internet for websites and then determines the category of the content. From time to time, a legitimate site is filtered accidentally. If you discover a legitimate site has been filtered, please alert the staff.
Internet access policies, rules and procedures have been designed to maximize availability and insure fair accessibility. They are subject to change as our experience with this service grows.
First time users will read and review a copy of this policy and OPLIN access information.
- The public access computers are normally available, subject to periodic maintenance, during library hours. Minors under the age of 18 are to use the terminals designated for use by youth.
- Use of the public computer is first come, first served at the sign-in sheet. You are limited to 30 minutes per day unless no one else is scheduled.
- The public computer will be used for educational, informational, and recreational purposes only.
- Public computers will not be used for any illegal activities that violates local, state or federal laws.
- Public computers will not be used for unauthorized or unethical purposes.
- Users will not disrupt the use of library computers by other users.
- Respect the privacy of others by not misrepresenting yourself as another user; but not attempting to modify or gain access to files, passwords, or data belonging to others; by not seeking unauthorized access to any computer system, or damaging or altering software components of any network or database.
- Users may not attempt to add, modify, or remove any system element. This includes downloads, and/or installing software.
- The Library does not provide electronic mail accounts.
- You may not use your own software programs on the library’s public computers.
- You may use your own electronic media on the library public computers. Flash drives are available for $6.00 each. Printing is $.10 per page for black and white and $1.00 per page for color. Media left in the computer will be discarded after one business day.
- The Ashtabula County District Library is not responsible for damage to a patron’s electronic media or computer, or for any loss of data, damage, or liability that may occur from patron use of the Library’s computers.
- You may not always be able to go to the places on the Internet you want to visit. The reason may be: too many visitors using the host computer, the database or resource is limited to a particular institution, the host computer has a different address or has closed down, or the Library’s connection is temporarily unavailable due to technical difficulties.
- Misuse of the library’s computers or Internet access will result in loss of Internet privileges. Unlawful activities will be dealt with in a serious and appropriate manner.
- Open access points may be offered by the Library for Wi-Fi enabled laptops.
Library Staff Assistance
Library staff cannot provide in-depth training or technical assistance, but we will be glad to help you in accessing the Internet, and to offer searching suggestions and answer.
It is understood by users of the Internet at ACDL that most of the information available is not generated by the Ashtabula County District Library. The Library provides access to reference databases of general and special periodical materials, reader’s advisory services, homework centers to assist students with research assignments, and legislative, historical, and archival materials and information.
Information available through the Internet is not warranted by the Ashtabula County District Library to be accurate, authoritative, factual, or complete. The availability of networked information via the Ashtabula County District Library does not constitute any endorsement or ratification for the content of networked information available. The use of the Internet to engage in any activity which constitutes violation of local, state, and/or federal laws is strictly prohibited.
All users of this service agree to hold the Ashtabula County District Library and OPLIN harmless from any and all claims, losses, damages, obligations, or liabilities directly or indirectly relating to the use of OPLIN and the Internet, caused thereby or arising therefrom. In no event shall the Ashtabula County District Library or OPLIN have any liability for lost profits or for indirect, special punitive, or consequential damages or any liability to any third party, even if the Ashtabula County District Library or OPLIN is advised of the possibility of such damages.