Acceptable Use of WiFi in Lewisham Public Libraries 

1 . Introduction 

Lewisham Library and Information Service provides access to the Internet and other information technology to support the educational, recreational and cultural needs of the community. 


The Internet 
The Internet provides access to valuable information resources in many different formats. The Library and Information Service supports legitimate access to information by any member of the public, but recognises that such a resource may be open to misuse and abuse. The following policy has been produced in order to safeguard the interests of the library service and the community we serve. All references to "computers" in this document refer to the terminals within the libraries which offer the Internet and other applications for public use. This includes the computers in the Learning Centre on the occasions when the public is using them to access the Internet as part of an agreed programme of training. 


2. The Internet & Your Responsibility 

Whilst the Internet contains a wealth of valuable and interesting information, some of this information may be inaccurate, out of date, controversial, offensive and/or illegal. Lewisham Library and Information Service accepts no responsibility for the quality, accuracy or availability of information accessed through the Internet. As a user, therefore, it is your personal responsibility to ensure the accuracy of information you discover. Lewisham Libraries and Information Service assumes no liability for any loss, damage or injury, direct or indirect, suffered as a result of using these computer resources. 


3. Conditions of Access 

Access to computers in Lewisham Libraries is available to all. All users must be aware of the conditions of the Acceptable Use Policy, and a shortened version of it will be appear on the terminals as you access them. You will need to agree to the conditions there before you can proceed. 


Children and Young People 
As is the case with all other library materials, any restriction of a child's access to the 
Internet is the responsibility of the child's parent, carer or legal guardian. Children and young people misusing the Internet will have a letter sent to their parent / carer detailing the misuse and copies of emails considered obscene, offensive or abusive will be obtained where possible as evidence. Any public access of illegal, offensive or controversial material or the sending of illegal, offensive or controversial material to other library users may result in the user being refused further access to library computers.


The use of computers in Lewisham Libraries is free of charge. Related charges apply in all libraries for services such as printing and the sale of floppy disks. 

Booking a computer session 
You will need to book a place in order to use the Internet. On your first visit, go to the counter to register. Thereafter you will be able to use a self-booking kiosk in most libraries: otherwise ask at the counter. No more than two people may use the same computer at any one time. 

4. Your Session in Progress 

Library staff will try wherever possible to help computer users if requested to do so, but this will be entirely dependent on the availability of the staff. Lewisham Council can monitor access to Internet sites, and any public access of illegal, offensive or controversial material may result in the user being refused further access to library computers. 

5. Security 

Filtering software will be used in an attempt to screen out offensive and illegal Internet material, which the Council deems inappropriate within public areas. However, the library service cannot guarantee that all such material will be filtered. Parents should be aware of this when allowing their children to use the Internet. 

6. Prohibited Uses 

The use of computers for obtaining, displaying or distributing material which would be considered obscene, offensive or abusive according to the Council's guidelines for blocking sites is prohibited. This includes the sending of emails and text messages which could be considered racist, obscene, offensive or abusive. 

7. Penalties for misuse 

Library staff will direct computer users to remove inappropriate images or text from 
the screen if, in the staff member's judgement, the image or text is displayed in such 
a way that other library users cannot reasonably avoid viewing it. Lewisham Libraries and Information Service reserves the right to refuse further computer access to any individuals accessing or distributing materials which are deemed to be illegal or unacceptable or have the potential to offend or disturb others. Library staff on site will determine whether any computer activity is unacceptable and this determination will be subject to confirmation by the senior 
member of staff on site. 


Author: Graham Mabey, Lifelong Learning Librarian 

Amended by Jo Moulton, Children and Young Persons Librarian 

This acceptable use policy complies with national guidelines endorsed by CILIP (the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals), the Peoples' Network and UKOLN (the UK Office for Library Networking).