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The East Orange Public Library helps people of all ages meet their informational, educational, and recreational needs by acquiring organizing, and assisting in the use of print and non-print resources.

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Staff Internet and E-mail Usage Policy

The Library encourages the use of electronic mail to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of its Staff. Electronic mail (e-mail) can and does facilitate rapid communication between individuals and groups; reduces postage; printing and long distance telephone charges.

In addition, it opens new avenues for research and development, and enhances library services while promoting Staff development.

Responsible use of this service is expected, as well as, compliance with all applicable federal and state laws, while conducting library business with accepted standards of personal and professional courtesy. What follows is the policy governing its use.


The purpose of this policy is to ensure that:

  • Library staff are informed about the applicability of laws and policies and the issues of privacy and security as they relate to electronic mail service.
  • Electronic mail services are used responsibly, in compliance with laws and policies and in adherence to the guidelines here defined.


Communication tools and equipment that facilitate the Library's electronic mail services, including individual accounts assigned for staff use, are Library property and as such are owned by the Library.

Use of the Library's electronic mail service is a privilege that may be restricted or terminated by the Library at will, without the prior consent of the user, when required by law, when there is reason to believe that violations of law or policy have occurred, or when there is a record of inactivity on the account.

Disclosure and Privacy

The Library does not routinely monitor or inspect e-mail, but retains the right to monitor all online communications to ensure that employees pursue only appropriate business purposes. Monitoring may include, but is not limited to, review of e-mail content and attachments, e-mail addresses, tracking Internet sites visited by each user, the frequency and time spent on the Internet by each user, blocking access to certain types of sites, and ensuring compliance with this Policy.

Both the nature of electronic mail and the public nature of the Library make electronic mail less private than users may anticipate. For example, e-mail intended for one person sometimes might be widely distributed because of the ease with which it can be forwarded to others by recipients. Protections used to secure the integrity of e-mail, such as system back-ups, may also compromise privacy. Users should be aware that the system administrator and computer operations staff may inadvertently, during the performance of their duties, see the content of e-mail messages. Except as instructed by the Director or required by law they are not permitted to do so intentionally or to disclose or use what they have seen. The library cannot protect users against such eventualities. Neither can the Library protect users from receiving e-mail they may find offensive.

General Principles

  1. On-line communications may not be private and may be subject to interception, which may not be detectable. As a result, confidential information should not be sent on-line.
  2. The East Orange Public Library supplied e-mail accounts and Internet ID's should not be used for anything other than Library-sanctioned communications.
  3. Use of the Internet and e-mail will be monitored for security and/or management reasons. Users are subject to limitations on their use of such resources.
  4. The distribution of any information through the Internet, computer based services, e-mail, and messaging systems is subject to all policies and procedures applicable to dissemination of information by non-electronic means. The East Orange Public Library reserves the right to determine the suitability of this information.
  5. Use of any Internet related capabilities for personal use is prohibited.

Usage Rules

The Library prohibits any employee using the East Orange Public Library Internet and/or e-mail resources for:

  1. Visiting Internet sites that contain obscene, hateful or other objectionable materials; displaying, downloading or sending any material that is obscene for defamatory purposes or which is intended to annoy, harass or intimidate another person; displaying, downloading or transmitting sexually-explicit images, messages, ethnic slurs, racial epithets or any thing which could be construed as harassment or as disparaging of others;
  2. Sending or receiving e-mails that are unrelated to business activities;
  3. Soliciting non-company business for personal gain or profit;
  4. Using the Internet or e-mail for any illegal purpose;
  5. Representing personal opinions as those of the Library;
  6. Making or posting indecent remarks, proposals, or materials;
  7. Uploading, downloading, or otherwise transmitting commercial software or any copyrighted materials belonging to parties outside of the Library, or licensed to the East Orange Public Library;
  8. Downloading any software or electronic files without implementing virus protection measures that have been approved by the Library;
  9. Intentionally interfering with the normal operation of the East Orange Public Library's computers and/or network, including the propagation of computer viruses and sustained high volume network traffic which substantially hinders others in their use of the network;
  10. Revealing or publicizing confidential or proprietary information which includes, but is not limited to: financial information, databases and the information contained therein, patron lists, technical product information, computer software source codes, Computer/network access codes, related to the Library;
  11. Examining, changing or using another person's files, output, or user name without explicit authorization;
  12. Use of the computer or Internet access for non-company business, including "surfing" the Web for fun on Library time;
  13. Performing any other inappropriate uses.

Employees learning of any misuse of the East Orange Public Library's Internet access or e-mail resources shall notify the Director.

Users who violate this policy may be subject to disciplinary action up to and including termination of employment. The Library also retains the right to report any illegal violations to the appropriate authorities.

Approved by the Board on 09/14/2000.