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Internet Access Policy


All branches of the Kern County Library have free access to the Internet. There is no charge for the time you spend on the Internet, but there are charges for printing ($ .15 per page for black and white and $1.00 per page for color prints plus tax). These guidelines apply to all users of Kern County Library's computers or networks. If you have any questions about these guidelines or what they mean, please contact a Librarian for more information.


CIPA Compliance

In accordance with Kern County Board of Supervisors policy, federal and state law, all computer workstations in all Kern County Library locations offer only filtered access to all library customers of all ages.  The Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA) requires libraries such as the Kern County Library which receive discounts on Internet connections and service to block or filter for all users visual depictions that are obscene or child pornography, and to filter, for minors, depictions which are harmful to minors.

Persons at least 18 years old are entitled to have the filter disabled for a specific period of use upon making a request to staff.  When asked for unfiltered access by a person 18 or older, staff will respond immediately and without question to disable the filter.  If the patron requesting unfiltered internet access appears younger than 18, staff will check the patron’s

Internet users are entitled to privacy.  As with other Library materials, Library staff does not monitor what any user views or reads over the Internet.  If the nature of the content being viewed on the Library computer workstation disturbs other Library users, the viewer will be asked to cease.  Kern County Library’s Behavior Code can be found in full at www.kerncountylibrary.org Internet users of all ages may ask Library staff to evaluate sites they believe are inappropriately blocked by the filter or have been rated incorrectly.  Library staff will also consider requests by Internet users to block websites believed to display unlawful images.


Purpose and Access

To fulfill our mission, Kern County Library provides access to a broad range of information resources, including those available through the Internet. We make this service available as part of our mission to offer a broadly defined program of informational, educational, recreational and cultural enrichment opportunities for people of all ages and backgrounds, which reflect the great diversity of interests and opinions in our communities. It is the function of the public library to make materials available as widely as possible, while recognizing the right and responsibility of parents and guardians to guide their children's reading and viewing.


Choosing and Evaluating Sources

The Library assumes responsibility only for the information provided on the home page and the supporting web pages resident on this server.  The Internet offers access to many valuable local, national and international sources of information.  However, not all sources on the Internet provide accurate, complete, or current information.  A good information consumer evaluates the validity of information found as with other library materials.


Responsibility of Users

Supervising Children's Use:
Parents and legal guardians are responsible for their minor children's use of the Internet. Parents and guardians should supervise all Internet sessions of minors in their custody.
Parents and guardians must inform minors if there are materials that would be inappropriate for them to access or use. This includes insuring the safety and security of minors in their custody when the minors are using electronic mail, chat rooms, and other forms of direct electronic communications and insuring that personal information concerning the minor is not subject to unauthorized disclosure, use or dissemination. The Library has provided filtering services that help eliminate access to material that may be inappropriate for minors, and chat rooms. Parents and guardians shall not allow any minor in their custody to engage in any unauthorized access, including so-called "hacking", or other unlawful activities using Library computers.

Filters do not remove all potentially objectionable material found on the Internet. Parents and guardians are strongly encouraged to guide their children's use of the Internet and may wish to use search tools that provide their own additional filters. The Library recommends parents and guardians view Child Safety on the Information Highway, produced by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and Interactive Service Organization and Teen Safety on the Information Highway with their children.
The Internet is a global entity with a highly diverse user population and information content.  As a CIPA compliant library, to prohibit minors from having access to pornography, filtering software has been installed on all browsers in the Kern County Library System in accordance with Resolution 2012-296 adopted by the Kern County Board of Supervisors on October 23, 2012, which declared: "This Board hereby declares that it is the policy of the Kern County Library, consistent with constitutional principles and to the maximum extent possible with available technology, to prevent disruption of the educational purpose and atmosphere of the public libraries of Kern County through the display of sexually explicit material and to restrict access by minors over the Internet at County public libraries to harmful material as defined in the California Penal Code."


Rules Governing Use

To provide equal opportunity for all users to access the Internet, the Library may limit use. Please limit your time on the workstation to one hour or less when others are waiting to use it.


Users may not:

  • Make any attempt to damage computer equipment or software.
  • Make any attempt to alter software configurations.
  • Make any attempt to cause degradation of system performance.
  • Use any Library workstation for any illegal or criminal purpose.
  • Violate copyright laws or software licensing agreements in their use of Library workstations.
  • Engage in any activity which is deliberately slanderous.
  • Install or download any software.
  • Disturb other Library users or staff in any way, including by display of sexually explicit material (See also Library Conduct Policy)
  • Minors may not view material that is harmful to minors under California Penal Code Section 313 et seq.

Violations will result in the revocation of Internet use privileges. Unlawful activities will be dealt with in a serious and appropriate manner.


Copyright

U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S. Code) prohibits the unauthorized reproduction or distribution of copyrighted materials, except as permitted by the principles of "fair use." Users may not copy or distribute electronic materials (including electronic mail, text, images, Programs or data) without the explicit permission of the copyright holder. Responsibility for any consequences of copyright infringement lies with the user; the Library expressly disclaims any liability or responsibility resulting from such use.


Internet Functions Supported

The Library provides a graphical World Wide Web browser at all branch locations. The Library does not provide uploading of computer programs or files at this time.


Notice

The library expressly disclaims any liability or responsibility arising from access to or use of information obtained through its electronic information systems, or any consequences thereof.
 
   
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