Computers - Internet Access And Use Policy


Statement of Policy & Text offers access to information resources over the Internet in order to be responsive to the information needs of our diverse community. While the Library strives to offer sites which provide current and accurate information, the changing nature of this medium means the Library cannot guarantee the accuracy of information gained through the World Wide Web. Users are responsible for determining that the information they access is acceptable, reliable and suitable to their needs.

Need for the Policy

The Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Library and the San José Public Library system provide access to the Internet in accordance with their mission of providing public access to information of all types in a wide range of formats. In doing so, the Library does not monitor and has no control over the information accessed through the Internet and assumes no responsibility for its content.

Requirements & Guidelines

It is a violation of federal law to knowingly receive visual depictions of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct. Anyone who does so is subject to federal criminal prosecution under the Protection of Children Against Sexual Exploitation Act of 1977(18 USC 2252).

Materials obtained or copied on Library computers may be subject to copyright laws, which govern the making of reproductions of copyrighted works. Users must comply with U.S. copyright law and other applicable laws.

The Internet is a global electronic network. It enables the Library to greatly expand its information services beyond the traditional collections and resources. However, not all information on the Internet is current, complete or accurate. The Internet may contain material of a controversial or mature nature. The Library neither restricts access to materials found on the Internet nor protects users from materials or information they may find offensive. The Library encourages all users to make appropriate use of the Internet by providing programs and assistance for responsible use.

Parents or legal guardians must assume responsibility for deciding what library resources are appropriate for their own children. It is both the right and the responsibility of parents and legal guardians to guide their own children’s usage of library resources in accordance with individual family beliefs. The library has created Web pages for children and young adults which provide content and links to other Web sites that parents and legal guardians may find appropriate for their children. For more information on children and the Internet, see our Resources for Parents and Educators.

San José library patrons are expected to use library computers in a responsible and courteous manner. Computers are located in public areas and shared by people of all ages and backgrounds. Internet users must be considerate and respectful of other library patrons and especially mindful of children in the library. Use of public computers for internet access to material that depicts sexual conduct of minors under the age of 18 or that displays material harmful to minors may violate different Penal Code provisions, such as Penal Code Sections 311.11 and 313.1, which may constitute a misdemeanor or felony offense under California law. A potentially unlawful use of public computers may be referred to law enforcement personnel for appropriate action.


  1. Due to the limited resources available for provision of public access to the Internet, the Library reserves the right to limit the amount of time an individual user may have access to library equipment. Rules for use of the Library’s Internet workstations are as follows:
    • A valid library card in good standing and PIN number are required to reserve a workstation
    • Reservations can only be made by the cardholder, and the workstation reserved can only be used by the cardholder
    • Each user may have four reservations at a time
    • Users may make reservations four business days in advance
    • Reserved workstations will be held for 10 minutes at the King Library and 5 minutes at all branches, after which PC’s will be made available to other customers.
    • After the user completes their reserved time, they may make another reservation for later that day OR they may, without a reservation, continue to use the workstation, provided it has not been reserved.
    • If a user sees a workstation not in use, they may log-on and use it without a reservation, provided no one else has reserved it.
    • When the user's session expires, they will be automatically logged off the workstation they are using
  2. Library staff members will assist customers, as time permits, with basic Internet navigation and with basic computer and printer functions.
  3. Users may not attempt to reconfigure systems or software, or in any way interfere with or disrupt the current system or network set-up and services.
  4. Users may not unplug, remove, or otherwise modify library equipment.
  5. Some workstations have a dedicated purpose, such as searching for periodical citations and articles, and are to be used only for that dedicated purpose. Some workstations are reserved for use by children or for use by people with disabilities.
  6. Privacy screens are available in all branches and units of the Library, and may be requested by customers for use in the library. In addition, a staff member may require a customer to use a privacy screen when a staff member deems it necessary.
  7. All users are expected to be respectful of the rights of others in using the Internet. Each customer has the right to a quiet and organized work space. No more than 2 people may use a work station at the same time.
  8. If any user abuses or engages in unauthorized use of computers, his or her computer privileges will be denied. If a customer refuses a staff request to end problem behavior, the customer will be asked to leave the library. Staff may call upon the assistance of other and/or supervisory staff, and if the situation escalates, Public Safety staff or police may be called.
  9. Computers will be shut down no later than 5 minutes before the Library closes.

Applicable Personnel/Departments

All Library Departments




Reviewed and approved by: Signature/Name Date of Approval
SJPL Supervising Librarian Lisa Rosenblum 4/05
SJSU Associate Dean Jo Bell Whitlatch 4/05
SJPL Acting Assistant City Librarian Mary Nacu 10/6/09
SJSU Dean Ruth Kifer 10/09
KMT Ruth Kifer, John Wenzler, Mary Nino, Luann Budd, Anne Cain, Neil Rufino, Sandra Stewart, Katie Dupraw 2/22/2013

History & Dates

Category of Policy: User Services
Author(s): SJPL Supervising Librarian, Lisa Rosenblum & SJSU Associate Dean, Jo Bell Whitlatch
Authorized by: SJPL Supervising Librarian, Lisa Rosenblum & SJSU Associate Dean, Jo Bell Whitlatch
Date Written: 4/25/05
Date Effective: 4/25/05
Date(s) of Revision(s): 10/09 mn/gd; 3/5/10gd; 2/22/2013