Terms of Use / Library Policies

Table of Contents

Terms of Use

The Hopkins County-Madisonville Public Library (“HCMPL” or the “Library”) has created and maintains this website to make information about its programs, collections and resources available to the public via the Internet.  By using this website and its content, you are agreeing to comply with and be bound by the following Terms of Use.  These Terms of Use may change from time to time, and we encourage you to review them periodically.  Your continued use of this website indicates your acceptance of any changes to these Terms of Use.  (Any changes to these Terms of Use are inapplicable to disputes arising, or arising out of events occurring, prior to the posting of such changes here.)

Copyright

All materials on this website are copyright protected by the Hopkins County-Madisonville Public Library, including but not limited to all design, HTML code, text, and images, unless otherwise expressly stated. All rights reserved.
In cases where materials on this website are protected by third party rights, you are responsible for clearing the necessary rights to use the materials in question.  For example, if you want to download a photo that is still protected by copyright for use in a research paper, you must determine whether your proposed use requires consent from the copyright holder, and, if so, you must secure the permission of the copyright holder.

Privacy Policy

Information provided by patrons to the Library is governed by the Library’s privacy policy.  By using HCMPL’s website and services, you signify your acceptance of this Privacy Policy.  We encourage you to read the privacy policy at your convenience.
Third Party Websites
Among the many services offered by the Library is access to databases provided by third parties.  These databases are subject to their own Terms of Use.  Please review the Terms of Use specific to each database you intend to use and make sure that you comply with the applicable rules.

Links

Some pages on this website include links to other websites pertaining to the Arts, Technology, Education, Employment, Government and other areas of general interest.  The Library has not reviewed all of these websites and is not responsible for the content of these websites.  The Library provides these links as a resource only and they are not intended to be an exhaustive catalog of available sources nor do they imply endorsement of, sponsorship of, or affiliation with the linked site by the Library.

HCMPL attempts to feature links on its website to other sites that, in our judgment, will have interest and/or value for those who visit the Library’s website. Recognizing that some valuable services are available exclusively from commercial sites (e.g., web search tools, database vendor information, etc.), links to selected commercial sites are included to provide access to useful, free, informational resources. However, under no circumstances do we endorse commercial services or link to a site that is primarily fee-based. Links are selected based on: (a) the quality of the information found at the site, (b) the relevance of this information to HCMPL’s mission and removals are subject to comment and discussion among the staff and administrators. Decisions are reached by team consensus.

Disclaimers

The Library assumes no responsibility for damage to your computer or other property resulting from your use of this website.  You understand and agree that any downloading or obtaining of material or data through this website is done at your own risk.  In addition, we disclaim any and all responsibility or liability for the accuracy, reliability, and legality of materials found on this website. In no event shall HCMPL or any of HCMPL’s trustees, employees or affiliated entities be liable for any direct, indirect, special, incidental, consequential, exemplary or punitive damages arising from, or directly related to, the use of, or the inability to use, HCMPL’s website or the content, materials, and functions related thereto.

Indemnity

You agree to defend, indemnify and hold HCMPL and its Trustees, officers, employees and agents harmless from any and all claims, liabilities, costs and expenses, including reasonable attorneys’ fees, arising in any way from or relating to your use of the HCMPL Websites, your placement or transmission of any message, content, information, software or other materials through HCMPL’s website, or your breach or violation of the law or of these Terms of Use.  HCMPL reserves the right, at its own expense, to assume the exclusive defense and control of any matter otherwise subject to indemnification by you, and in such case, you agree to cooperate with HCMPL’s defense of such claim.

Computer Use Policy

Computer/Internet Acceptable Use Policy

Introduction

The Hopkins County – Madisonville Public Library system provides access to the Internet for the recreational, research, and productivity needs of its patrons. The Internet as an information source enables the Library’s staff and patrons to find a wide array of information from sources not available any other way. It allows access to ideas, information, and commentary from around the world.
In order to comply with the Children’s Internet Protection Act [Pub. L. No. 106-554 and 47 USC 254(h)], it is the policy of the Hopkins County – Madisonville Public Library system to: (a) prevent user access to or transmission of inappropriate material; (b) prevent unauthorized access and other unlawful online activity; and (c) prevent unauthorized online disclosure, use, or dissemination of personal identification information of minors, via library connectivity.

Definitions

Key terms are as defined in the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA)*

Internet Filtering

The Children’s Internet Protection Act mandates that technology protection measures (or “Internet filters”) be applied within the Library (i.e., to Library-owned computers and Wi-Fi) in order to block or filter Internet, or other forms of electronic communication, from access to inappropriate information. Specifically, as required by CIPA, blocking shall be applied to visual depictions of obscene materials, child pornography, or material deemed harmful to minors. Other websites that have been determined by the Library’s staff as sites that overburden or disrupt the Library’s computer network may also be inaccessible. Filtering is applied to both wired and wireless Internet access.

The web filtering categories used by the Library are maintained by a third-party vendor and are not under the direct control of the Library. The Library cannot police the entire Internet, nor can Library staff evaluate each and every site which is blocked or allowed by the filters. However, some websites which have been carefully evaluated by the Library staff may be added to a Library-specific whitelist (for sites vetted and allowed by the Library) or blacklist (for sites vetted and blocked by the Library). Patrons who believe a site has been unfairly blocked or who believe that an unblocked site violates Library policies are encouraged to fill out a “Request to Block or Unblock a Website” form. The site will be critically evaluated by two or more members of the Library staff. Sites which violate the Library’s Computer/Internet Acceptable Use Policies or other Library policies will be added to a Library-specific blacklist and will be blocked from further access. Sites which are not found to violate any Library policies will be added to a Library-specific whitelist. A decision about whether to block or unblock the site will be made within 2 weeks.

The Hopkins County – Madisonville Public Library system respects the intellectual freedom of its patrons and recognizes that the technological limitations of Internet filtering software at the present time can place an unfair burden on the freedom of information. No Internet filtering software is completely accurate. Filters may falsely block legal and useful material that is appropriate in a public library setting or they may fail to block access to illegal or objectionable material. Internet filtering may be made less restrictive (for minors) or disabled entirely (for adults) upon request only for bona fide research or other lawful purposes. Staff will not require an explanation for disabling the filter.

Adult patrons using the adult computer lab may request that specific sites be unblocked or that the entire filter be disabled on their computer for the duration of their computer session. Proof of age will be required in order to allow disabling of the entire filter.  Minors may request ONLY that specific sites be unblocked on their computers for the duration of their session; The entire filter will NOT be disabled for minors, or for computers that minors are accessing. To this end, parents requesting that filters be disabled for their children will only be allowed unblocking of specific websites, not of the entire filter.
Patrons may not attempt to subvert or circumvent the Library’s Internet filters. Any attempts to do so could result in loss of computer/Internet privileges.

The Library’s policies regarding use of its computer and Internet services remain in effect when the filter is disabled.

Choosing Internet Sources

The Internet is an unregulated medium with a highly diverse user population, and it is possible that individuals might access information that they personally find offensive or disturbing. The Library is unable to monitor or control the content of materials on the Internet. Individual users must accept responsibility for determining the suitability of the content they are viewing for themselves and for their children. Not all information provided through Internet sources is accurate, complete, or current.  The Library assumes no responsibility for the content or accuracy of any information obtained online. As with any material provided by the Library, patrons must take responsibility for critically evaluating the validity of any online content they access.

Internet filtering is not a substitute for parental judgment or oversight. It is the belief of the Hopkins County – Madisonville Public Library system that the reading and viewing activity of children is ultimately the responsibility of parents who guide and oversee their own children’s development. Parents are encouraged to explore the Internet with their children, supervise them, provide clear guidelines regarding what sites and activities are off-limits, and teach their children safety rules for dealing with strangers online.

Internet / Computer Use

All use of the Hopkins County – Madisonville Public Library system’s computer and Internet services shall be consistent with the purposes, goals, and mission of the Library and its policies. Successful operation of the Library’s computer and Internet network requires that users regard the Library’s computer and Internet services as a SHARED resource, and cooperate with a community of users with diverse interests for the common purpose of advancing public education in Hopkins County. Because the Library’s computer system is a shared, open resource, patrons are cautioned to exercise prudence in the use of this resource. The following are guidelines for the use of the Library’s computer and Internet services:

  1. Any use of the Library’s computer or Internet services for illegal or inappropriate purposes, or in support of such activities, is prohibited. Any such use could result in the revocation of computer and Internet privileges in the Library.
  2. No use of Library computer or Internet services shall serve to disrupt the use of the network for other patrons or staff.
  3. Some information found online is of a mature nature and may not be suitable for young children. Patrons under the age of 12 may not use the adult public computers without the direct supervision of an adult responsible for their care. The responsible adult must be at the same computer as the child for the duration of the child’s computer session.
    PARENTS AND GUARDIANS, NOT THE LIBRARY STAFF, ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR THE INFORMATION SELECTED AND/OR ACCESSED BY CHILDREN.
    Designated children’s computers are available for patrons under the age of 12.
  4. Due to network bandwidth and potential copyright issues, BitTorrent and equivalent P2P networking sites and software are prohibited for use via library connectivity.
  5. The Library uses automated time-keeping software to track the use of its public computers. A valid Hopkins County – Madisonville Public Library card is required to access this system. Library cards must be in good standing;  Any fines or overdues materials on the account must be cleared before computers will become accessible. A temporary guest pass may be generated for out-of-county patrons or patrons who are otherwise ineligible to sign up for a library card. Only one guest pass will be issued per patron per day.  Out-of-county patrons who use the Library’s computers frequently will be encouraged to apply for a library card.
  6. Educational use of computer and Internet services takes precedence over recreational web browsing.
  7. Downloading is permitted. Users must provide their own storage media. Downloaded materials will not be retained on the Library’s computers. Files downloaded from the Internet may contain malicious elements (like computer viruses) that could result in loss of data or damage to other computer equipment. The Library is not responsible for damage to a patron’s storage media nor for any loss of data, damage, or liability that may occur from the use of the Library’s computer or Internet services, nor can the Library guarantee compatibility with Library hardware or software.
  8. Patrons may not install software to the Library’s computers. Patrons are not permitted to delete, add to, or modify the installed hardware or software. Patrons who need to install software are required to ask Library staff for assistance.
  9. Printing from the Library’s computers is available for a small charge. Patrons may not print items that do not conform to the Library’s policies. Doing so may result in loss of computer privileges.
  10. Public computers are available on a first-come, first-served basis for sessions of up to 2 hours per day. When the computer lab is not full, computer sessions may be extended in 15-minute increments up to a total of two additional hours. Patrons must request an extension before their session expires. Guest passes will NOT be issued as a substitute for an extension in the case of an expired computer session, except under extenuating circumstances.
  11. Library staff are able to offer some limited basic assistance with patrons’ computer needs.  However, library staff have many responsibilities and constraints on their time, and therefore generally cannot provide in-depth one-on-one training on Internet, personal computer, or mobile device use. Staff members have varying levels of technological expertise. Because of scheduling, staff that is knowledgeable about a patron’s particular technological needs may not always be available.
  12. Every effort is made by the Library staff to provide computer and Internet services during the full operating hours of the Library. However, there may be times when these services are not operational due to Internet provider outages, computer repairs or updates, power outage, etc.  Operational hours may also be restricted at times due to use of the computers for Library programming.
  13. The Library cannot guarantee privacy for individual users online. The sending or receipt of any information through the Internet is at the sole risk of the user.
  14. When a computer session is ended, information about that session is ordinarily deleted. Personally identifiable information, including websites visited, passwords, credit card numbers, or any other information a patron has entered, as well as any files that a patron has downloaded to the computer’s hard drive, are ordinarily purged from the computer at the end of each computer session. For this reason, the Library requires that all patrons follow correct log-out procedures, in order to protect patron privacy.
  15. From time to time, the Hopkins County – Madisonville Public Library system shall make decisions of whether uses of the computer and Internet services are consistent with the stated policies. The Hopkins County – Madisonville Public Library system shall remain the FINAL authority on the use of computer and Internet services and the allowance of use by patrons. Library staff reserve the right to terminate a patron’s computer or Internet session at any time.

This usage policy does not attempt to articulate all required or proscribed behavior by its patrons. Use of the Library’s computer and Internet services is a privilege, not a right, and inappropriate use will result in cancellation of this privilege. Examples of inappropriate use include, but are not limited to:

  1. Unauthorized connection to the Library’s network, hacking, and other unlawful activities.
  2. Subversion or circumvention of the Library’s Internet filters.
  3. Exhibition of pornographic or otherwise obscene material on Library computers or via Library Wi-Fi. (KRS 531.020)
  4. Violation of copyright or software licenses while using Library computer or Internet services. (US copyright law, Title 17, US Code)
  5. Use of Library computer or Internet services to harass or threaten others.
  6. Illegal or criminal activities on Library computers or through Library Wi-Fi.
  7. Misrepresentation of oneself on the Internet via Library computer or Internet services.
  8. Intentional damage to workstations, printers, or other Library property.
  9. Unauthorized tampering with computer or network hardware or software, including altering hardware/software configurations.
  10. Violation of another user’s privacy.
  11. Violation of state obscenity and federal sexual harassment laws, which prohibit printing or display of sexually explicit materials in public places.

Abuse or misuse of equipment, software, or policies could be grounds for revocation of privileges or possible legal action.

Confidentially and Privacy

Kentucky law recognizes the confidentiality of library records. Personally identifiable information about users, including minors, will not be disclosed or used in any way, except to law enforcement authorities as required by law. Some library records fall under the National Homeland Security Act and therefore may be subpoenaed as court documents.

* CIPA definitions of terms:

MINOR.  The term “minor” means any individual who has not attained the age of 17 years.

TECHNOLOGY PROTECTION MEASURE.  The term “technology protection measure” means a specific technology that blocks or filters Internet access to visual depictions that are:

OBSCENE, as that term is defined in section 1460 of title 18, United States Code;

CHILD PORNOGRAPHY, as that term is defined in section 2256 of title 18, United States Code; orHarmful to minors.

HARMFUL TO MINORS.  The term “harmful to minors” means 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; and Taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value as to minors.

SEXUAL ACT; SEXUAL CONTACT.  The terms “sexual act” and “sexual contact” have the meanings given such terms in section 2246 of title 18, United States Code.

Code of Conduct

All persons have free access to the Library during the hours it is open and the right to the reasonable use of its facilities and services. The Library, however, expects reasonable behavior from its users. Anti-social or problem behavior may infringe upon the rights of others in the use of the Library. It is the policy of the Library to maintain a safe facility, free from any threat of physical violence, emotional abuse, or any form of intimidation. Respect for other Library users and staff shall prevail always.

To ensure safety, comfort, and access to Library resources and facilities for all, the Hopkins County-Madisonville Public Library Board of Trustees have adopted this Code of Conduct. Any behavior or activity that interferes with legitimate library business will be prohibited. Persons who fail to observe the following guidelines may be asked to leave the library and library grounds, banned from library use and/or be subject to arrest under trespass laws of the Kentucky Revised Statutes, Chapter 381, Section 231 and Chapter 511, Sections 060, 070, or 080.

The following are examples of unacceptable behavior:

  • Loud talking, inappropriate cell phone use, disruptive, abusive, or threatening language or behavior.
  • Consumption of food and beverages in the public areas of the Library (with the exception of library-sponsored or approved events)
  • Smoking, use of tobacco, vaporizers (eg. electronic cigarettes), or consumption of illegal substances.
  • Consuming alcoholic beverages and/or being under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
  • Use of Library computers which violates the Library Computer and Internet policies and procedures.
  • Sleeping, bathing or washing clothing.
  • Leaving personal belongings (eg. backpacks, coats, purses, etc.) unattended.
  • Offensive body odor due to neglected hygiene or other strong scents that may be offensive or disruptive for others.
  • Use of Library facilities or equipment for other than library purposes, including solicitation and/or distribution of materials, without prior written authorization.
  • Running or use of bicycles, skates, skateboards or rollerblades on Library premises.
  • Rearrangement of Library equipment or furniture (other than by library staff)
  • Bringing pets, other than certified service animals, into the building.
  • Use of Library by customers not fully clothed, including shirts and shoes.
  • Damaging Library property.
  • Panhandling, soliciting, gambling, or loitering on Library premises.

Additionally,

  • The Library maintains the right to inspect all packages of visitors entering or leaving the Library.
  • The Library has the right to restrict visitors from entering the Library with large bundles, carts, bicycles, or similar items.
  • Anyone unable to care for, or be responsible for, him or herself must be supervised by a responsible caregiver.

None of these rules are intended to be all inclusive of every behavior that will be regulated on library property. The Hopkins County-Madisonville Public Library reserves the right to prohibit any behavior or actions which we feel may be inappropriate or disruptive.