Internet Use Policy

TPL-SER-07_Internet Use Policy

The Timmins Public Library provides public access to the Internet to meet its mandate to preserve and promote universal access to a broad range of knowledge, experience, information and ideas, to users of all ages.

This policy outlines the provision of public network services to access the Internet and the acceptable use of these services.  Users are expected to adhere to Canadian federal, provincial or municipal laws and to the Library Users’ Code of Conduct.  This policy applies to any use of computers or personal devices on the premises of the Library or on the Library’s wireless network.

1.0  Definition

For the purposes of this policy:

-A “child” means any person up to and including the age of 12

2.0  Library Not Liable:  The Library assumes no responsibility for Internet content or damages, directly or indirectly, arising from its website or from its connections to other Internet services.  Library computer use, Internet access and email use is at the user’s sole risk.

3.0 Reliability and Appropriateness of Information: The Internet is an unregulated worldwide environment and contains information and opinions that range in scope, from reliable and authoritative to controversial and extremely offensive.  Some information found on the Internet may not be accurate, correct or current.  The Library is not responsible or liable for the content or quality of material retrieved and makes no warranty, expressed or implied, as to any material found on the Internet. Users must assess the validity of the information found.

4.0 Security:  The Library does not provide encryption or other security measures to protect information you send or receive over the Internet.  The Library assumes no responsibility or liability for the security or privacy of online transactions.

5.0 Accurate Representation of User: Patrons using this service are responsible in ensuring that:

  • All of the information provided to the Library in order to log onto the network is correct and current.
  • They are not prohibited by any law, order or judgment (whether civil or criminal) from accessing the Internet.

6.0 Privacy and Confidentiality: Use of the network is subject to the Timmins Public Library’s Confidentiality and the protection of privacy policy.

Privacy at Internet workstations is not guaranteed; Internet stations are located in a public environment shared by users of all ages and sensitivities.  To maintain an environment that is appropriate for all Library users, please do not display offensive materials on the computer screen.  The Library reserves the right to ask users to leave sites that are inappropriate for viewing in a public library setting.  Internet users should respect the privacy of others by refraining from observing or commenting on what is being viewed by other users.  Privacy screens are available upon request.

7.0 Filtering:  In order to allow users unfettered access to information while at the same time recognizing that many sites are inappropriate for children, and to protect other members of the public from inadvertently seeing offensive material, a mix of filtered and unfiltered workstations is available.  Unfiltered workstations will be labelled and will not be accessible to children aged 12 and under.  The Library’s wireless network is filtered.

Filtered workstations are aimed at blocking sites that contain sexually explicit material. Commercial software is installed on filtered computers to help reduce the chances of involuntary exposure to sites that may be considered by some to be offensive, inappropriate, or illegal.  Software updates provided by the software company are also installed.  The Library assumes no responsibility for the currency, accuracy and effectiveness of any installed filter.  Filters do not always work as advertised and may fail to block some sexually explicit sites. Filters are not a substitute for parental guidance.

8.0 Use by Children:  The term “children”, for the purpose of this policy, means up to and including the age of 12.  With their Library card, children may access all information and use all electronic resources provided by the Library with the exception of unfiltered Internet workstations.  As with other Library materials, children’s access to the Internet and other electronic networks is the responsibility of parents and guardians. The Timmins Public Library does not act in place of or in absence of a parent. You are encouraged to supervise and to participate actively in your children’s Internet use.

Only a child’s parent or guardian has the right and responsibility to restrict that child’s use of Library resources, including the Internet. Should a parent or guardian wish to remove their child’s access to the Internet, they may do so by advising the Library.

9.0 Computer Access:

Computers are available on a first come, first served basis.  The Library has implemented software to manage daily access for computer users. Users are required to log in at a computer workstation with their Library card number and PIN, while visitors can obtain a temporary guest pass by providing proper identification.  All users must accept the terms of the Internet Use Policy.  It is the user’s responsibility to log out of all active sessions.

At the Main Branch, users are granted 60 minutes of computer access per day.  After 60 minutes of usage, users may be granted an automatic extension of 30 minutes if there are at least 5 available computers.  Following this 30 minutes extension, users may be granted another 30 minute extension if there are at least 5 available computers, allowing for a maximum of 2 hours per day.

At the C.M. Shields Branch in South Porcupine, users will be granted 60 minutes of computer access per day.  If computers are available, users may request a 60 minute extension from Library staff, allowing for a maximum of 2 hours per day.

All Internet sessions, including use of printers, will end promptly 10 minutes before the closing of the Library.

10.0 Wireless Access:  Wireless access complements public computer access by enabling Library users to access Library resources and the Internet with their own wireless enabled equipment.

The Library’s wireless access points are unsecured connections to the Internet. The Library is not responsible for loss of information over the wireless network nor does it assume responsibility for the security and privacy of online transactions. Users should be aware that third parties may be able to obtain information about users’ activities when accessing the wireless service to connect to the Internet.  Wireless users are responsible for the protection of their devices against any potential abuse, such as viruses, malwares, or breaches of privacy.  Printing is not available from the wireless connection.

11.0 Prohibited Activities:

11.1 Library computers, equipment, facilities and networks may not be used to:

  • Access sites or transmit materials that violate any Canadian federal, provincial or municipal laws regulating Internet use including provisions of the Criminal Code regarding obscenity, child pornography, sedition and the incitement of hate.
  • Display overt sexual images.
  • Send fraudulent, harassing, or obscene email messages.
  • Violate the privacy of another Library patron.

11.2 Copying material from the Internet may infringe on copyright or other intellectual property rights.  The Library is not responsible for any such infringement.

11.3 Users are expected to treat Library resources with respect; misuse or abuse of equipment or programs is not acceptable.  Users may be asked to pay for any damage caused by wrongful usage.

11.4 Food and drink are not permitted while using the public workstations.

11.5 Altering Library hardware or software is prohibited.  Altering includes but is not limited to damaging or attempting to damage equipment, interfering with network integrity or security, changing workstation configurations, and downloading software, applications, files, pictures, videos or music that may contain viruses.

11.6 Files created or downloaded by the user should not be saved on public computers.  Saved files will be automatically removed when the computer logs out or restarts.  Users should store their files on personal removable storage media or on personal devices.  The Library is not responsible for any loss of data incurred by the user.


12.0 Email:  The Library does not provide email accounts.  Users must maintain their own web-based mail service.

13.0 Library Website:  The Library is not responsible for the site content of links or secondary links from its home pages. The Timmins Public Library assumes no responsibility for any direct or indirect claims, damages or costs, which may be sought by users or third parties arising from its provision of access to Internet services.

14.0 Staff Assistance: The staff cannot provide in-depth training but may be able to offer searching suggestions and answer questions when time allows. Due to legal and privacy issues, Library staff are unable to enter personal, business, or financial information on behalf of the Internet user.

15.0 Printing:  Printing from Internet sources can be unreliable and unpredictable. The page layout may not be as the patron expects. Patrons are responsible for all pages that they print. To minimize costs for the patron and the Library, patrons are encouraged to use the print preview feature, or to cut and paste Internet information into a word processor for organizing before printing.  Staff can assist with printing when required.  Printing is available on the Library’s networked printers at a cost of 15 cents per page (b&w) or 50 cents per page (colour).  Printing is not available from the wireless connection.

16.0 Violations:  The Library provides Internet access as a privilege, not a right.  Internet workstations are situated in public areas, and users are expected to access the Internet in accordance with this environment. All patrons of the Timmins Public Library, including users of the Library’s Internet services, are expected to follow the Internet Use Policy as well as the Library Users’ Code of Conduct which is designed to provide a welcoming environment.

Disruptive, threatening or any other intrusive behaviour is not allowed.  The Library reserves the right to terminate an Internet session at any time. Violations of this policy and/or the Library Users’ Code of Conduct may result in suspension of Library privileges, exclusion from the Library and prosecution.


TPL-GEN-07  Confidentiality and the protection of privacy

TPL-SER-12  Library Users’ Code of Conduct