Use a Computer

The library has 8 public computers with Internet access.

Internet Use Policy

    I. Purpose

    The Library provides Internet access to the public as an additional source of information. It is to be used to supplement other reference and educational information.

    II. Responsibilities of the Users

    A. The Altoona Public Library has no control over the information accessed through the Internet and cannot be held responsible for its content. Individual users must accept responsibility for evaluating content. As with other library materials, the Library affirms the right and responsibility of parents and/or guardians to guide, determine, and monitor their children’s use of the Internet.

    B. The Library cannot guarantee confidentiality on the Internet nor will it guarantee the use of a secured or non-secured site.

    III. Rules for Usage

    A.  The Internet Policy automatically appears on the computer screen the first time a patron tries to access the Internet.  The patron must read and accept the policy before they may proceed.  Patrons under 14 years of age must have permission from a parent or guardian to use the Internet.  A parent or guardian must indicate on the child's library application card whether or not they would like their child to have Internet access and provide their signature.

    B.  Patrons should use their library card to register for use of a computer at the self-reservation station or open computer.  Library staff will register patrons if they do not have their library card a total of three times.  After that, the patron must fill out a new library card application form and pay appropriate fees for a new library card or return to the library with their current valid library card.  All users of the Internet must fill out a library card application form and will receive either a permanent or temporary library card depending on their circumstance.  Everyone filling out a library card must present a valid form of identification.  People who are just "passing through" will receive a temporary card without borrowing privileges.  Anyone caught breaking into library PAC terminals to use the Internet will be asked to leave the library immediately.

    C. Users are limited to one (1) hour of Internet use per session. Additional time is automatically allotted in fifteen (15) minute intervals with no more than two (2) hours of use per day per individual.  Exceptions will be made on a case by case basis.  A patron taking an on-line test is an example of an approved extension of use.

    D. No more than two (2) users will be permitted at a workstation at a time. Both individuals, if under the age of 14 years, must have parental permission to use the Internet.

    E. Users may print information from the Internet screens at a cost of 50 cents per page for colored prints and 15 cents per page for black prints. Some documents may contain numerous pages; users are financially responsible for all printouts. Those needing assistance with printing are encouraged to seek staff assistance.

    F. Users will be asked to discontinue use of the Internet 15 minutes before closing each day.

    G. The following Internet protocols are not supported: Electronic Mail, Usernet news groups, Internet Relay Chat (IRC). Direct File Transfer Protocol (FTP) is not permitted.  Exceptions may be made at the discretion of the librarian.

    H. Library staff will instruct patrons in how to start an Internet browsing program and other basic procedures of our particular Internet System. Staff will not provide any further instruction or perform searches for patrons. The Library will provide users with a list of search engines and Web sites. Because of Library scheduling, Internet-trained staff may not always be available.

    IV. Supervising Children’s Use

    A.  It is not the responsibility of the library to monitor children’s use of the Internet or to decide which resources are appropriate. It is the library ’s policy that parents or legal guardians must assume responsibility for deciding what library resources are appropriate for their children. Concerned parents should let their children know if there are any materials they do not wish them to use and are encouraged to monitor their children’s internet use.

    B.  Children under the age of fourteen (14) are required to have a library application card on file on which the parent or guardian has given the child permission to use the Internet.

    V. Users of the Internet may not…

    A. Use any Library workstation for illegal or criminal purposes including:

         1.  Violation of Iowa state law, which makes it illegal to download or    purvey child pornography, purvey pornography to children, or to commit fraudulent acts using the Internet.

          2.   Violation of U.S. copyright law (title 17, U.S. Code) which prohibits the unauthorized reproduction of copyrighted materials, except as permitted by the principles of “fair use”.

    B. Use obscene language.

    C. Display offensive messages or pictures.

    D. Use Library workstations to gain unauthorized access to the Library ’s or any other organization’s networks or computer systems.

    E. Make any attempt to add, delete, modify, or damage the installed hardware or software or any part of the computer system.

    VI. Filtering Software

    The library makes use of Internet filtering software.  Use of filtering software does not guarantee that questionable sites will not appear.  It is still the responsibility of the parent or guardian to monitor minor children in their use of the Internet.  Adult users, age 18 and above may request that the Internet filter be turned off while they are using the Internet.



    A.  This policy also applies to the Altoona Public Library's wireless access network (WAN) users.

    B.  The Altoona Public 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.

This resource is supported by the Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act as administered by State Library of Iowa.