Tacoma Public Library
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Administrative Policy #10.53

Policy for Public Use of the Internet

The Library views the Internet, a vast and interconnected network of content providers, as a technology with the potential to expand the universe of information available to the people of Tacoma far beyond the reach of the Library's own collection. 


Access to the Internet is available via public computer workstations and a wireless network.

A valid Tacoma Public Library card is required to use a public Internet workstation.

The Library upholds the right of each individual 18 years or older to have access to constitutionally protected material. 

The Library will follow state and federal regulations applicable to the use of public Internet workstations. 

Responsibility of Users

A user may not tamper with Library hardware or software or use the computing resources of the Library for any purpose that violates any library rule or policy or any local, state, or federal laws or regulations.  Any person doing so may have his or her use of Internet services limited or suspended, and may be banned from the Library, as provided for by Administrative Policy #10.49, “Exclusion from Library Premises.” 

Some content on the Internet may be offensive, illegal, out-of-date, or erroneous.  It is the responsibility of the user to determine what materials are appropriate and suitable. 

As with all other Library material, Internet use by a minor is the responsibility of the parent or guardian.  Parents should inform their children of materials they do not want them to use, and may wish to supervise their children’s Internet sessions.  To help protect their children's safety, TPL encourages parents and children to discuss the child’s use of email, online chat, and disclosure of personal information over the Internet.

No user may engage in any behavior that unreasonably interferes with or disrupts the use of computing resources by others. Disruptions include but are not limited to:

  • distribution of unsolicited advertising
  • harassment of other persons
  • using computer resources to make unauthorized entry to any computer accessible via the network, including the host systems at the Library
  • Damaging or altering computer equipment, systems or software
  • Displaying, printing or sending any material that is obscene, libelous, threatening or harassing
  • Downloading or installing any harmful program defined as, but not limited to, spyware, viruses, Trojans, malware, or any other illegal utility on any computer
  • Violating copyright or trademark laws, software licensing agreements or intellectual property rights

It is the user's responsibility to check for copyright protection or any licensing agreement for any software, files or data being used, and to comply with the requirements of that copyright or licensing agreement. 

Users of Internet services at the Library should have no expectation of privacy. 

By making use of Internet services at the Library, patrons agree to abide by the provisions of this "Policy for Public Use of the Internet". 

General Provisions

The Library may set time limits on any of its computer workstations. 

Transaction logs and other system information that could be used to identify users with specific materials or subject matter are considered by the Library to be confidential, as provided for by Administrative Policy #10.23, "Confidentiality of Records Policy."   

The Library will implement technology measures that protect against access to visual depictions that are obscene, child pornography, or harmful to minors or other patrons, and to comply with various state or federal laws or regulations.

Patrons who are at least 18 years of age or older (and provide acceptable photo identification) may request unfiltered Internet access. 


Last Updated 04.05.2012