Internet Use / Policy Statement



The Gadsden Public Library provides Internet access to the public in order to make available a vast array of information resources and to allow members of the public to become familiar with state-of-the-art information technology.


• The library has no control over the information accessed through the Internet and cannot be held responsible for its content or accuracy.
• Parents are advised to supervise their children’s Internet sessions.
• Adults must have a library card or photo identification for a guest pass to use Library computers.
• Staff members will request that a patron end an Internet session, if in the staff member’s judgment, the site is inappropriate.
• Illegal or disruptive activities that interfere with users, services or equipment are prohibited.
• The library does not permit the use of chat rooms and other Internet services and products that do not support the library’s mission.
• Personally identifiable information concerning users may not be disclosed or used in any way on the Internet without the permission of a parent or guardian or the permission of the user himself/herself.
• Users should never give out private or confidential information about themselves or others on the Internet, particularly credit card numbers and Social Security numbers.
• The Library Director may authorize the release of directory information, as defined by the Code of Alabama, for internal administrative or planning purposes. Any disclosure of current patron information to legal authorities, as required by law with search warrant or subpoena, must be authorized by the Director of the Library.
• While the Library endeavors to provide access to information of the highest quality, the Library specifically disclaims any warrant as to the information’s accuracy, timeliness, authority, usefulness or fitness for a particular purpose.
• The Library will have no liability direct or indirect of consequential damages related to the use of information accessed through the Library’s Internet service.
• The Library is not responsible for damage to users’ devices or for any loss of data, damage or liability that may occur from use of the Library’s computers or ultimately to the Library for a specified amount of time.
• Copies are $.10 (cents) for black and white copies and $.50 for color copies and must be paid before copies are printed.
• Do not download or install software programs on library computers.
• Do not access pornographic or obscene materials.
• Save computer work on a USB key-drive. Patrons cannot save on the hard drive.
• Computer work stations are designed for use by one person at a time. A second person is allowed only if they are assisting the patron.
• Computers in the children’s area can be used only by children under 13 years of age. Adults are allowed in the children’s computer area only to provide assistance to their own children.
• While Library staff are happy to assist users in accessing the Internet, each user is nevertheless responsible for his or her own search. Staff cannot provide in-depth personal training in the use of the Internet or of personal computers. Staff should refer patrons needing additional assistance to Library computer classes.
• Failure to comply with this policy or with library staff directions may result in restriction or termination of the user’s library privileges and may result in prosecution under local, state or federal laws.
• Internet regulations apply to individuals using the library’s wireless access as well as those using library provided computers.

Examples of unacceptable usage include, but are not limited to:
• Intentionally developing programs to harass other users or to infiltrate a computer or computing system, or develop programs that may damage or alter the software components of this or other computing systems.
• Damaging or destroying equipment, software or data belonging to the Library or to other users, including adding, altering or deleting files on Library workstation hard drives or other Library computer equipment.
• Unauthorized copying of copyrighted material.
• Violating software license agreements.
• Violating computer system or network integrity, including attempts to bypass network security functions, obtain passwords, or alter the configuration of Library workstations in any way.
• Harassing others.
• Using the Internet for any illegal activity.
• Gambling on the Internet.
• Encouraging others to use the Internet to violate the law.
• Transmitting offensive or harassing messages.
• Offering for sale or use any substance the possession or use of which is prohibited by law.
• Viewing, transmitting or downloading pornographic materials.
• Uses that are harmful to minors.*
• Downloading or transmitting confidential, trade secret information, or copyrighted materials. (Even if materials on the networks are not marked with the copyright symbol, users should assume that all materials are protected unless there is explicit permission on the materials to use them.
Compromising the safety and security of minors by means of email, chat rooms and other forms of direct electronic communications.

* The term “harmful to minors” is defined by the Communications Act of 1934 as meaning:
any picture, image, graphic image file, or other visual depiction that taken as a whole and with respect to minors, appeals to a prurient interest in nudity, sex or excretion; depicts, describes or represents in a patently offensive way with respect to what is suitable for minors, an actual or simulated sexual act or sexual contact, actual or simulated normal or perverted sexual acts, or a lewd exhibition of the genitals; taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political or scientific value as to minors.

Violations specific to Alabama include these:
§ Dissemination or public display of obscene matter is a misdemeanor in Alabama. Code of Alabama 13A-12-200.3
§ Dissemination or public display of obscene matter containing visual reproduction of person under 17 years of age involved in obscene acts is a Class B felony in Alabama. Code of Alabama 13A-12-191.

The Gadsden Public Library uses Comcast as our Internet Provider; therefore acceptable use policies provided by Internet Solutions will serve as further Internet Regulations.