INTERNET USE POLICY FOR THE PUBLIC
In fulfillment of our mission to “deliver equitable access to information in all formats…to support the developmental and recreational needs of Trinidad and Tobago”, the National Library & Information System Authority (NALIS) offers public access to the Internet through the provision of computers and Internet services available at all libraries.
1. Access to Internet Services
Use of the computer facilities is on a walk-in ‘first-come first-served’ basis. Reservations can be made with the assistance of staff or at the self-service ‘First Available Sign-Up’ stations.
Patrons must possess a valid library membership card, issued in their name, along with suitable identification where necessary. Patrons may not lend their cards, sell their time, or otherwise transfer their daily Internet time/usage privileges to any other user.
Visitors to the library who do not possess a membership card can access the Internet and other computer services by obtaining a ‘Day Pass’ for which there is a small fee.
There is a daily time limit for computer use and patrons must abide by the time limits associated with one card/pass. Staff may use their discretion based on the demand for use at the time and may allow longer periods of use if the computers are free.
Wireless access to the Internet for patrons with their own laptops or PDAs is available at the National Library of Trinidad and Tobago and other selected public libraries.
2. Internet Services for Children
Access to computers and Internet services in the children’s sections or libraries is restricted to children 12 years and under. It is strongly recommended that parents supervise their child’s Internet sessions. Parents should advise their children of safety and security issues when using the Internet, and warn them against the disclosure of personal information when using electronic mail, chat rooms and other forms of direct electronic communications.
While the Library staff will monitor the display on the screens in the children's library, parents or guardians are responsible for the Internet information selected and/or accessed by their children.
3. Internet Resources
Although the Internet provides access to an unlimited range of information, it is acknowledged that it may contain materials which are out-of-date, illegal, inappropriate or offensive to individuals. NALIS cannot guarantee the accuracy, authority or timeliness of any information found on the Internet. Neither can NALIS assume responsibility for any damages, direct or indirect, arising from its connections to the Internet.
Staff members have been trained in the evaluation of Internet sources and can assist in determining reliable sources of information efficiently. Additionally, easy links to selected sites which we believe are authoritative and reliable are provided via the NALIS website. Links to government services and access to several online resources including EBSCO, OCLC and Thomson Gale research databases are also available. In some cases, access is only available in the library.
Access to social networking websites such as MySpace, Facebook and YouTube, is permitted for limited periods. Internet gaming is allowed only as long as activity is not considered to be violent, pornographic, illegal or disruptive to other library users.
Filtering software is used to block certain categories of sites for the protection of the network and in an effort to prevent access to illegitimate sites. However, it must be noted that the filtering software, while blocking access to questionable sites, might also block access to legitimate or useful ones.
5. User Responsibilities
All patrons are expected to use this library resource in a responsible manner, consistent with the purposes for which it is provided. NALIS recognizes the privacy of the library user and does not monitor the information or sites accessed by clients. However, patrons are expected to respect the privacy and sensibilities of other users.
Consequently, the use of the library’s computers to access material that is sexually explicit or violent is prohibited. This includes material that is pornographic, obscene or illegal, whether received through email or as a result of visits to adult sites. NALIS reserves the right to determine what is pornographic or otherwise indecent and unacceptable behavior.
Patrons must not use the library’s computers to gain access to restricted files or data belonging to others, perform any illegal activity, damage equipment or alter the set up of computers used to access the Internet.
In order to maintain the integrity of the computer system, patrons accessing the Internet must not save or download information or files to the computers’ hard drives. Any unauthorized information found saved on the hard drives of public computers will be deleted. Work may only be saved to removable devices such as floppies, CDs or memory sticks where access to these is available. These media are not available for sale at the library therefore, patrons must provide their own.
Printing is available at a charge, which is subject to change periodically. It is the responsibility of the user to respect copyright laws and licensing agreements, and to assume responsibility for payment for any fee-based service.
Patrons using computer services including the Internet are expected to abide by NALIS’ Rules of Conduct. Refusal to adhere to the guidelines here outlined or the direction of the Librarian will result in the termination of Internet or computer sessions and or suspension of the user’s library privileges.