Internet Use & Safety Policy

Internet Access

The Library has computers for Internet Access in both the Children's Room and in the Adult Services Area on the second floor. Please read our computer policy and statement below
Our staff have found a large collection of interesting and useful internet sites appropriate for all ages. Check them out be using the links to the left!

Internet Access Statement


The Cumberland Public Library provides access to desktop applications and the Internet subject to computer availability. This service affords library patrons the opportunity to take advantage of the resources made available via the Internet and databases.

Access Time

Patrons may access the Internet by signing in and out with their library card or a guest pass at each workstation. The Computer Stations may be used for one (1) hour at a time in the Adult Services Area and for 30 minutes in the Children's Room. The patron may remain longer, if no one else is waiting by asking a staff person for an extension. Reference and Children's staff have final say on the usage of the Computer Stations.


Printers are available for printing at 15¢ per page for B&W or $.50 for color, payable at the self-serve print stations or to library staff in that department. 

Saving Files

File saving to the hard drive is allowed temporarily. These files are periodically deleted. USB flash drives are also available for $10 each.

Responsibilities of Users

Computer users must immediately report to the Reference Staff any malfunctions, difficulties or damage to computer equipment. Computer users agree to pay replacement cost of any computer equipment damaged or made unusable through improper use, malicious intent or neglect.

Internet Use and Safety Policy


The Cumberland Public Library recognizes that within the Cumberland community there are groups and individuals with diverse interests, backgrounds and needs. The Library further recognizes and emphasizes that the public library is an institution of a democratic society and was established to serve all the people in a community.
Electronic information and networking is a new and very rapidly developing area of public and private activity. The Library recognizes that these developments pose new challenges as well as new opportunities for the library board, the library staff, and library users and their families.

Responsibilities of the Library

Congress and the courts have recognized that there is no single organization to govern, control, or select information for the Internet. Because of this freedom of information, the breadth of information on the Internet, the unstructured and unregulated nature of the Internet, the international nature of the Internet, and the unreliable state of filtering, the Cumberland Public Library cannot control the content of resources available on the Internet.
Library staff will apply the selection criteria outlined in the library’s “Materials Selection Policy” to provide access to a broad range of World Wide Web resources through selected sites on the Library’s homepage. The Cumberland Public Library homepage is designed to offer easy and convenient access to valuable pre-selected local, national, and international sources of information.


The Library does not select the material on the Internet and has no means nor statutory authority to assure that only constitutionally protected material is posted there. The authority to determine what is illegal (obscene) content rests with the Rhode Island Attorney General. However, the Library does use an index that categorizes websites by type and eliminates the most offensive. In addition, on all Internet terminals, the Library provides users with the option of using the pre-selected databases or other sites listed on the Library’s homepage. This option is intended to assist all patrons in meeting their special interests and/or their personal values.
Access, use, or dissemination of information via the Internet in the Library is the responsibility of the user. In the case of minors, it is a joint responsibility of the user and the parent or guardian.

Responsibilities of Users

Providing connections to global information, services, and networks is not the same as selecting and purchasing material for a library collection. Determining the accuracy or authenticity of electronic information may present special problems. Some information accessed electronically may not meet a library's selection or collection development policy, nor may it be accurate, complete, current or legal. It is, therefore, left to each user to determine what is appropriate. Library patrons use it at their own risk. A good information consumer evaluates the validity of information found. Use of Internet resources carries with it a responsibility to evaluate the quality of the information accessed. The availability of information does not constitute endorsement of the content by the Cumberland Public Library.

Users of Library computing resources must comply with federal and state laws, Library rules and policies, and the terms of applicable contracts including software licenses while using Library computing resources. Examples of applicable laws, rules and policies include the laws of libel, privacy, copyright, trademark, obscenity and child pornography, and the Electronic Communications privacy Act and the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, which prohibit “hacking,” “cracking” and similar activities. Users who engage in electronic communications with persons in other states or countries may also be subject to the laws of those jurisdictions.

Users must not use computing resources to gain unauthorized access to local or remote computers or to impair or damage the operations of Cumberland Public Library computers or networks, PC workstations or peripherals. This includes blocking communication lines and running, installing or sharing virus programs. Deliberate attempts to circumvent data protection or other security measures are not allowed. Violations of any of these applicable laws, rules and policies shall result in revocation of library privileges.


The Cumberland Public Library upholds the right of confidentiality and privacy for all library users. At the same time, users are urged to respect the sensibilities of others when accessing information that may reasonably be offensive to someone else. However, absolute privacy for patrons using electronic resources in the Library cannot be guaranteed. There exists a possibility of inadvertent viewing by other patrons, either by watching the user’s screen, or because a user may leave the screen unattended. The Library’s “Public Behavior Policy” applies to the behavior of patrons using electronic equipment and resources. Failure to follow this policy could result in revocation of library privileges.

Supervising Children’s Use

Parents and legal guardians who are concerned about their children's use of electronic resources should provide guidance to their own children. The public library, unlike schools, does not serve in loco parentis (in place of a parent). Librarians cannot act in the place of parents in providing constant care and supervision of children as they explore the Internet. The responsibility for what minors read or view on the Internet rests with parents or guardians.
The following are recommended guidelines for parents and guardians to ensure that children have positive online experiences, whether at home or in the library:

  • Use the Internet as a family. Join your children in Internet exploration.
  • Explore the wide range of available information and tell your children about sites you consider inappropriate for them.
  • Encourage children to use sites recommended on the Library's Kidspage and counsel them to avoid sites you consider unsuitable.
  • Explain to children that access to secure and unauthorized sites is illegal and that “hacking” into such sites is a punishable offense.
  • Provide guidelines for your children on the amount of time they spend online, just as for television viewing.
  • Instruct children NEVER to give out personal information (name, address, password, telephone number, credit card number) when using electronic mail, chat rooms, or other forms of direct electronic communications.
  • Teach children to be good online consumers. As with print information, consider the source, date, and accuracy of online information.

As it does with other library resources, the Library will provide training on electronic resources. It will also make information available to help parents and guardians in their efforts to exercise their rights and responsibilities regarding their own children's use of electronic resources.

Approved by the Library Board of Trustees, June 25, 2002
Updated by the Library Board of Trustees, January 24, 2012