Subject: Public Internet Policy Last Updated: 10/01/13
Category: Circulation and Information Services Supercedes: 06/07/11

I. POLICY

The Bedford Public Library System (BPLS) offers Internet access as an essential tool in providing adults and children of Bedford County with information and resources that support lifelong learning and lifelong enjoyment.  The BPLS offers Internet access as broadly and as completely as possible to include the widest possible diversity, views and expressions, and to insure access to all avenues of ideas to as many library users as possible.

Since all Internet sites are potentially accessible and the Internet is an unregulated medium connecting people and information sources from around the world, not all sources on the Internet provide information that is current, accurate, unobjectionable or complete.  The BPLS is unable to control the content of materials on the Internet.  Users of the Internet should exercise caution and critical judgment in evaluating the content they find on the Internet. 

Filtered and unfiltered forms of Internet access are provided for library computers.  Filtered access attempts to screen out content deemed obscene or harmful to minors.  It is by no means foolproof and may inadvertently allow content intended to be blocked or block unobjectionable content.  An adult decides which form of access to use.  The parent or legal guardian of a minor will decide if the minor may access the Internet and (a) whether access is to be filtered or (b) if the decision to use filtered or unfiltered access is to be left to the minor. Wireless network provides only filtered access.

There may be times when the user may not be able to access a given site on the Internet due to circumstance beyond the control of the Library System.  The BPLSreserves the right to terminate any Internet search session.  Users who fail to follow the policies and procedures may indefinitely lose their access privileges, particularly in the case of repeat offenders.  Illegal or disruptive behaviors can result in immediate termination of access and may necessarily involve intervention by law enforcement authorities. 

Library staff will be glad to assist our library users with using the Internet.  In the event library staff is not familiar with specific programs or capabilities, the library user will be responsible for learning the needed skills.

II. APPLICABILITY

All library patrons who access information through the Library System’s Internet service.

III. OBJECTIVE

To provide a connection to information and ideas available on the Internet and to establish the expectation that all Internet users will utilize the Library’s Internet service in a responsible and legal manner, consistent with the educational, information, and recreational purposes for which it is provided.

IV. PROCEDURES