Public Internet Computer Use Policy

The Internet provides access to a wide range of materials and opinions from various points of view from around the world. However, not everything found on the Internet is current, accurate, or complete. Some information available on the Internet may be considered offensive or inappropriate for certain age groups. While the Oconomowoc Public Library is sensitive to concerns about Internet content, no one, including the library, can control the information available through the Internet. Each individual is responsible for their own appropriate use of the Internet in a public place. Access to public computer workstations and the Internet is available to all patrons; however, this Internet service may be restricted at any time for use not consistent with library policy.

Procedures for Computer and Internet Use:

  • All persons using the library’s Internet computers must sign in with their own library card number or sign in with a guest pass in order to use the Internet computers.
  • Before each new session on an Internet terminal, patrons must read and accept the Acceptable Use Rules (as contained in this policy), which are displayed on the Internet terminal screens.

Guidelines for Computer and Internet Use:

  • While respecting an individual patron’s right to privacy whenever possible, staff have the right to monitor use of the library’s Internet computers to ensure compliance with library policy.
  • Users must be registered borrowers with a library card or sign in using a guest pass, available at the Information Desk.
  • Computer and Internet use is offered in thirty (60) minute sessions. Patrons may be granted additional time up to two hours, but this is not guaranteed. Library staff may grant exceptions to the two-hour limit  in some circumstances. If there are patrons waiting to use a computer, the patron must abandon use of the computer after his or her session.
  • No user may access the Internet by use of a terminal reserved for accessing online library catalogs.  NOTE: Accessing catalogs of other than Oconomowoc Public Library/CAFE shall be permissible when and if made available.
  • The library is not responsible for any loss or damage to personal disks or storage devices.
  • Patrons are responsible for consequences of any copyright infringement.
  • The library is not responsible for any financial loss that may occur while using the library’s Internet computers. This includes, but is not limited to, loss due to improper use of online financial tools, personal information intercepted while being transmitted, and identity theft.
  • If a user prints, there will be a per-page charge.
  • Library staff is available to assist patrons in their use of the Internet, but may not be familiar with every application patrons might wish to use.  Due to scheduling constraints, there may not be a librarian available to help at all times. Because of the many different Internet applications available, library staff cannot provide complete technical support.
  • Inappropriate, illegal, or unacceptable use of this resource is prohibited and can result in loss of Internet privileges, loss of library privileges, and/or legal action.
  • Parents of minor children must assume full responsibility for their children’s use of the library’s computers and Internet service.
  • Children Under the Age of 18
    • The Oconomowoc Public Library does not monitor and has no control over the information accessed through the Internet and cannot be held responsible for its content. All library resources, including Internet access, are provided equally to all library users.  Parents or guardians, not the library or its staff, are responsible for monitoring the Internet information selected, viewed, and/or accessed by their children. Children age 8 and under must be accompanied by an adult when using an Internet terminal, to assure proper use of the equipment.

Acceptable Uses:
The public computer and Internet workstations at the Oconomowoc Public Library are a resource intended to provide users with access to knowledge, information, and diversity of ideas. All users are expected to use this resource in a responsible manner consistent with the educational and informational purposes for which it is provided.

Unacceptable Uses:
Patrons may not use the Internet workstations for any illegal or inappropriate purposes. The following activities are illegal or considered inappropriate and are therefore prohibited:

  • Viewing, sending, receiving, or displaying text or graphics that may be reasonably construed as obscene, offensive, or “harmful to children” as defined by Sec. 948.11 of the Wisconsin Statutes, which lack serious artistic, literary, political, educational, or scientific value. Transmitting and/or receiving of child pornography is a crime.
  • Failing to abide by federal, state, and municipal laws and regulations.
  • Disregarding the privacy of others.
  • Misrepresenting oneself.
  • Attempting to modify or gain access to files, passwords, or data belonging to others; seeking unauthorized access to any computer system.
  • Damaging or altering software or hardware components or any network or database.
  • Making any changes to the setup or configuration of any software or hardware on the public Internet computers.
  • Interfering with or disturbing other library patrons.
  • Making unauthorized copies of copyrighted or licensed software or data. United States copyright law governs the reproduction, distribution, adaptation, public performance, and public display of copyrighted material.  Responsibility for any possible copyright infringement lies solely with the user; the library disclaims any responsibility or liability resulting thereof.

Consequences of Misuse of the Public Computers and Internet
Misuse or abuse of computers and Internet access will result in the following:

  • 1st Offense: 1-week suspension from computer and Internet workstation use at the Library.
  • 2nd Offense: 1-month suspension from computer and Internet workstation use at the Library.
  • 3rd Offense: 1-year expulsion from the library and suspension of all library services.
  • Serious and/or repeated violations of the Public Internet Computer Use Policy may result in full suspension of library services, expulsion from the library, and/or criminal prosecution.

Adopted: 5/9/2013
Revised:  8/25/2015
Revised:  5/9/2016

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