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Rise in porn site viewers forces library to pull Internet access
The Macomb Daily ^ | 11/27/2006 | Mitch Hotts

Posted on 11/27/2006 5:40:56 AM PST by cyclotic

Internet access for the public at the Mount Clemens Public Library has been revoked because of an increase in the number of people looking at sexually explicit material. Advertisement

The plug was pulled on the computers earlier this month after employees noticed a "large increase" in visitors using the free Internet service to access what the library termed obscene material in violation of library policies.

"There seemed to be a sudden increase in that kind of activity, and it was really bothering me. I thought something needed to be done," said library Director Donald E. Worrell Jr.

Library staffers acknowledge there have been complaints from people who want to use the Internet terminals for legitimate reasons, but seemed to understand the rationale once it was explained.

Worrell said his decision was difficult because public libraries encourage intellectual freedom and strive to avoid censorship. However, given the noticeable increase in pornography being displayed, Worrell said he felt action was needed.

"We have families and kids who have witnessed some of these activities going on and they were just shocked," Worrell said.

The controversy is not unique to the Mount Clemens Public Library, say experts in the library field.

"It's definitely an issue many libraries encounter," said Gretchen Couraud, executive director of the Michigan Library Association in Lansing. "The issue comes down to protecting free speech rights for adults while balancing the need to protect children from viewing the material."

Libraries can -- and do -- install filter software that can prevent pornographic material from being displayed.

But the Library Privacy Act, which went into effect in 2000, states if the facility provides public access to the Internet, there must be at least one unfiltered terminal for people 18 and older.

Furthermore, the law specifies that an adult can ask for the filter to be removed while he or she uses the terminal.

Libraries have come up with innovative methods to comply with the law and still shield minors from sexual material. Some libraries have Internet terminals in separate rooms for adults, with the children's computers having the restrictive filter system.

Others use privacy screens or "blinders" on the top of the terminals, designed to prevent passers-by from viewing the screen.

In the Sterling Heights Public Library, all computers have filters except those facing the reference desk, which are unfiltered but open to the inspection of library workers.

"We did that in response to some problems with people looking at inappropriate material," said Carol Lingeman, the head librarian. "That seems to have controlled it. Everyone in the library community has to make a decision on how to best address the situation."

In Mount Clemens, the terminals are all in public view, said Worrell.

Mount Clemens is consulting with the Macomb County Sheriff's Office and its legal firm to decide what course of action to take. Sheriff's deputies were asked to make more frequent walk-throughs of the library in an effort to discourage people from looking at pornography.

It's not clear when the Internet ban will be lifted in Mount Clemens.

"We need to find some better ways to control the public use of the Internet terminals so we don't have to worry about families coming in here and their children seeing something they shouldn't," Worrell said.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Government; US: Michigan
KEYWORDS: library; morals; mtclemens; pr0n
It's great to see a library who is more concerned with decency and propriety than in keeping with the liberal agenda.

My daughter works for this library so that makes it extra important to me.

1 posted on 11/27/2006 5:40:58 AM PST by cyclotic
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To: cyclotic

The American Library Association has to be disappointed. They believe in readily available porn and complete privacy for all ages.


2 posted on 11/27/2006 5:44:38 AM PST by Always Right
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To: cyclotic

I'm sure the ACLU will be filing suit shortly... 'specially for anyone wishing access to pedophilic sites.


3 posted on 11/27/2006 5:46:44 AM PST by theDentist (Qwerty ergo typo : I type, therefore I misspelll.)
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To: cyclotic

Am I missing something? I thought libraries would have some sort of blocking software - Weblocker or other. This also block out things like Ogrish and the like.


4 posted on 11/27/2006 5:53:39 AM PST by Mac1
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To: Mac1

Beware of these blocking services. At a school I worked for you could not access sites dealing with breast cancer nor could you access "extremist" websites (including Right to Life sites).


5 posted on 11/27/2006 5:56:34 AM PST by Bushwacker777
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To: cyclotic

Just put the PC's in the most visible and busiest part of the library: right near the entrance with the monitors facing the entrance way and front desk.


6 posted on 11/27/2006 6:03:23 AM PST by Uncledave
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To: Uncledave

That's about where they are. Evidently the perv's are still using them.


7 posted on 11/27/2006 6:30:41 AM PST by cyclotic (Support Cub Scouting-Raising boys to be men, and politically incorrect at the same time.)
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To: Uncledave
Just put the PC's in the most visible and busiest part of the library: right near the entrance with the monitors facing the entrance way and front desk.

That won't bother some people - I used to work with a Russian contract programmer who thought nothing of viewing porn in an open work area with women passing by all day. This was at a software company who cared more about getting the project done than about PC imperatives, but people from other cultures are often extraordinarily obtuse about how such actions are perceived in America.

8 posted on 11/27/2006 6:34:44 AM PST by Mr. Jeeves ("When the government is invasive, the people are wanting." -- Tao Te Ching)
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To: Uncledave
Just put the PC's in the most visible and busiest part of the library

That's just the problem. That people are looking at this stuff in full view. I, for one, welcome the all-or-none stance over the let's-legislate-it-to-death one.

9 posted on 11/27/2006 6:55:53 AM PST by Seņor Zorro ("The ability to speak does not make you intelligent"--Qui-Gon Jinn)
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To: cyclotic
My daughter works for this library so that makes it extra important to me.

It's great that your daughter is part of a group trying to do right. But the ACLU will trump her traditional values - and porn peddlers, drunks, and criminals will ultimately win control of libraries.

It's time to close libraries down. Have you noticed library bulletin boards filled with liberal propaganda? And only liberal propaganda? Who hasn't?

And the stuff about poor kids not getting to read? Take a look at who's in the library... It would be cheaper to pay Barns & Noble money to give books to anyone under the age of 12 - three free books a year and a subsidized children's reading room in store... We'd save billions and do a better job by the children. A private bookstore will know how to keep porn out of the view of 6 year olds. Time to dump the library system -it's too little for too much.

10 posted on 11/27/2006 7:06:18 AM PST by GOPJ (Muslims wear us down through terrorism.They should be worn down through mockery & criticism-Fjordman)
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To: GOPJ

In many cases I'd agree. Not this one. She works in the childrens library as a page (gofer) The librarian is a very nice Christian lady.

Better yet, the library did a $1.5 million upgrade last year using only funds they had been saving for the last 20 years. No new taxes, no fees, no debt.

We can get just about any book there with no problems.

A library is one of the few government institutions I can agree with.


11 posted on 11/27/2006 7:29:57 AM PST by cyclotic (Support Cub Scouting-Raising boys to be men, and politically incorrect at the same time.)
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To: cyclotic

It's not so much the porn sites as cleaning up after what they do under their raincoats.;-)


12 posted on 11/27/2006 7:41:15 AM PST by Ruy Dias de Bivar (When someone burns a cross on your lawn the best fire hose is an AK-47.)
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To: GOPJ
It's time to close libraries down.

Libraries are being put out of business by the Internet but that's not stopping small city socialists from building new vanity libraries. Libraries have become similar to light rail train-sets for socialists to play with, spend other peoples money on, and order people about.

I used to love libraries, at least the ones that put the money into the books instead of the buildings. Because of the Internet I haven't been to a library in years.

13 posted on 11/27/2006 7:57:52 AM PST by Reeses
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To: cyclotic

"...said library Director Donald E. Worrell Jr...."


Must be related to Ernest P. Worrell.


14 posted on 11/27/2006 8:02:33 AM PST by fishtank
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To: Ruy Dias de Bivar

Just don't get picked for gum duty!!


15 posted on 11/27/2006 8:04:58 AM PST by Tatze (This tagline is brought to you by the Admin Moderator!)
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To: Reeses

I kind of agree--my city has a new vanity library (it made national news for its leftist "mural" filled with misspellings) and the librarians sure do like to order people about. . .

HOWEVER: I have 4 children, voracious readers all, and each child has his own library card, and it is not uncommon for each child to have 100 books checked out per card (the library limit) at any one time--so our house has a constant rotation of 400 books.

We love the library. We go at least once a week to get more books, and music and DVDs too. A real money saver.


16 posted on 11/27/2006 8:24:14 AM PST by olivia3boys
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To: cyclotic
Did your daughter consider filing a "hostile workplace" lawsuit while the porn was visible to library employees? I mean, if her boss or another employee left pornographic pictures on her desk, that would be harassment, right? Why do the library patrons get to expose library employees to stuff like that? At the very least, such a suit would pit federal laws allowing pornography against federal laws prohibiting a hostile workplace, would would be fun to watch the courts sort out. It would also be interesting to see if courts have the guts to tell female employees of libraries that viewing pornography is part of their job.
17 posted on 11/27/2006 8:25:35 AM PST by Question_Assumptions
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To: Mac1

These filters can also be used to block "Free Republic" and "Little Green Footballs" as "hate sites."


18 posted on 11/27/2006 8:27:57 AM PST by Alouette (Psalms of the Day: 35-38)
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To: Reeses
Because of the Internet I haven't been to a library in years.

Because of public libraries I haven't been to a bookstore in years.

19 posted on 11/27/2006 8:29:07 AM PST by Alouette (Psalms of the Day: 35-38)
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To: cyclotic

>>Some libraries have Internet terminals in separate rooms for adults<<

Private booths. Cool!

</s>


20 posted on 11/27/2006 8:30:33 AM PST by RobRoy
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To: cyclotic
It's great to see a library who is more concerned with decency and propriety than in keeping with the liberal agenda.

It'd be a cleaner break with liberalism if they just started kicking out the pervs and reporting minors to their parents, rather than take away access from everybody else.

21 posted on 11/27/2006 8:53:26 AM PST by Dumb_Ox (http://kevinjjones.blogspot.com)
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To: theDentist

I just assumed that pedophilic sites would not be allowed on the Internet. True?


22 posted on 11/27/2006 9:32:08 AM PST by B4Ranch (Illegal immigration Control and US Border Security - The jobs George W. Bush refuses to do.)
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To: cyclotic

Porn? On the Internet? Who knew?


23 posted on 11/27/2006 9:38:57 AM PST by Billthedrill
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To: B4Ranch

I thought so too, but they exist out there, often under generic names or descriptions...


24 posted on 11/27/2006 10:04:24 AM PST by theDentist (Qwerty ergo typo : I type, therefore I misspelll.)
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To: Alouette; BushWhacker

might be wrong but I think what defines a particular site for blockage here (in the UK) might be something to do with the site address similar to some premium telephone numbers


25 posted on 11/27/2006 10:18:42 AM PST by Mac1
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To: Bushwacker777
Beware of these blocking services.

Filters may use an ACL (Access Control List) with a list of known URL's, and/or can read the content of a page before it is loaded, and block those with enough blacklisted words to score beyond a specific tolerance threshold.

A 'stock' Filter may block a variety of sites generically deemed inappropriate for children, but the sysadmin should be able to put valid educational sites into an exception list that will not be filtered.

On our filters I put an e-mail link to me on the page that loads when a site is blocked. The email sends me the URL of the blocked site for my review, and if it is a legitimate site for their school work I can unblock it in a minute or so.

26 posted on 11/27/2006 10:41:08 AM PST by longjack
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To: Billthedrill
Porn? On the Internet? Who knew?

I don't think "porn's" the problem - the problem's "porn in a public library".

I don't object to people going to the bathroom - but I don't want it happening in an open reading room at the public library. It's appropriateness - there's no porn watching at work either...

27 posted on 11/27/2006 11:45:23 AM PST by GOPJ (Muslims wear us down through terrorism.They should be worn down through mockery & criticism-Fjordman)
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To: Uncledave

"Just put the PC's in the most visible and busiest part of the library: right near the entrance with the monitors facing the entrance way and front desk."

There are perverts who get off on shocking people. They would go to the porn sites anyway.


28 posted on 11/27/2006 4:36:35 PM PST by ViLaLuz (2 Chronicles 7:14)
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To: cyclotic; All; beaversmom; Jeff Head; Darkwolf377; Armigerous; Mojave; citizencon; ...
I am very critical of the American Library Association for pushing inappropriate material on children. The ALA goes out of its way to instruct librarians how to fool the public. Most librarians are not so radical and militant as the ALA. But there are good librarians. This article illustrates yet another.

Imagine a librarian willing to stand up against the ALA to make such radical statements as, "There seemed to be a sudden increase in that kind of activity, and it was really bothering me. I thought something needed to be done." In another shocking statement rarely made for fear of retribution from the ALA, this same library director said, "We have families and kids who have witnessed some of these activities going on and they were just shocked." THIS LIBRARY DIRECTOR OUGHT TO GET AN AWARD FROM HIS TOWN GOVERNMENT!

Here is the official stance of the ALA, as spoken by its de facto leader, Judith Krug: "I get very concerned when we start hearing people who want to convert this country into a safe place for children. I am adult. I want available what I need to see." Here's another example of what this leader of the ALA said, "Blocking material leads to censorship. That goes for pornography and bestiality, too. If you don't like it, don't look at it ... Every time I hear someone say, I want to protect the children, I want to pull my hair out."

In such an atmosphere, it is easy to see how the library director in this story has seriously jeopardized his career by making statements in favor of protecting his community from harm, directly opposed to the ALA's statements in opposition to community interests.

I'm serious. Someone nominate this man for recognition is his town. Librarians with the guts to make statements opposed to the radical aims of the ALA are few and far between.

SafeLibraries.org - Are Children Safe in Public Libraries?

SafeLibraries. org - Are Children Safe in Public Libraries?

29 posted on 11/28/2006 8:03:11 PM PST by plan2succeed.org (www.SafeLibraries.org)
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To: cyclotic

Thanks to the sureme court, liberty turns into license. License leads to disorder, so liberty has to be restricted.


30 posted on 11/28/2006 8:27:52 PM PST by RobbyS ( CHIRHO)
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To: Reeses
You know most libraries and library "Systems" (Branches - dozens of libraries joined that you can borrow from) are online now. You go online to your System, sign on, search for books in your system by name, author, subject, etc., and then just put (click) them on hold into your account. They call you or notify you by email that they are at the library you choose to get them at and then you pick them up. No going in and having to ask someone to search for the books for you and put them on hold etc. There's no limit to how much you can request and put on hold, dozens or more, as fast as you and your family can read them all.

The "vanity" libraries are terrible, agree. One within our system - unbelievable, huge monstrosity and the hours are ridiculous - closed completely on Fridays and open only 2 hours on Saturday!!!
31 posted on 11/28/2006 8:33:44 PM PST by Esther Ruth (The Lamb SHALL overcome them for He is Lord of lords, and King of kings! Revelation 17:14)
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To: plan2succeed.org
Alas even Mr. Worrell has bought into the ALA propaganda: "Worrell said his decision was difficult because public libraries encourage intellectual freedom and strive to avoid censorship."

"Intellectual freedom" as defined by the ALA is NOT the intellectual freedom you and I have in mind. The freedom the ALA is enforcing is the "freedom" to allow children access to inappropriate material. It's even enshrined in the so-called "Library Bill of Rights," the enforcement of which with respect to age is the ALA's chief duty of all. How else can one explain why everyone knows children should not have access to inappropriate material, but the ALA says otherwise and the ALA positions control in most public libraries? The thing speaks for itself here.

And avoiding censorship? There's a propaganda line if there ever was one. The library director accepts this from the ALA hook, line, and sinker. Oh sure censorship sounds bad, and it is! But keeping inappropriate books from children is not censorship!! Besides, the ALA lost on this very issue in a US Supreme Court case where the Justices said, "The interest in protecting young library users from material inappropriate for minors is legitimate, and even compelling, as all Members of the Court appear to agree."

That same Court went further and said the use of Internet filters in public libraries is NOT censorship. SO WHY IS THE ALA PROPANGANDIZING PEOPLE INTO THINKING THERE'S A PROBLEM WITH CENSORSHIP WHEN IT LOST ON THAT VERY ISSUE IN THE US SUPREME COURT? And the statement by the library director, even as good as I said he is in my previous post, shows that he is still steeped in ALA propaganda. Unwittingly, I'm sure as the ALA propaganda machine is well oiled and well honed.

Another example of pure propaganda: "It's definitely an issue many libraries encounter," said Gretchen Couraud, executive director of the Michigan Library Association in Lansing. "The issue comes down to protecting free speech rights for adults while balancing the need to protect children from viewing the material." Wrong, lady. Read US v. ALA. (Hint: the ALA lost and lost big, and the issue has been asked and answered in that case -- no need to reraise it locally -- except to get the public to think US v. ALA doesn't exist.)

And the case went further to say filters may be used to enforce book collection policies on the Internet. Don't let the ALA fool you into thinking porn is perfect for public libraries. The US Supreme Court says it's not, and filters can be used to stop it. Whom do you believe, the ALA or the US Supreme Court?

And look at this: "But the Library Privacy Act, which went into effect in 2000, states if the facility provides public access to the Internet, there must be at least one unfiltered terminal for people 18 and older." Well will you look at that. This law from 2000 somehow trumps the US Supreme Court from 2003, the year of US v. ALA. THIS LAW NEEDS TO BE REEXAMINED IN LIGHT OF GUIDANCE FROM THE US SUPREME COURT.

Note libraries will do anything, ANYTHING, to prevent the use of filters, the only option that really works. Here, look, right in this very article: "Libraries have come up with innovative methods to comply with the law and still shield minors from sexual material. Some libraries have Internet terminals in separate rooms for adults, with the children's computers having the restrictive filter system. Others use privacy screens or "blinders" on the top of the terminals, designed to prevent passers-by from viewing the screen." These methods DO NOT STOP THE RAPE AND MOLESTATION OF CHILDREN IN PUBLIC LIBRARIES!! I have documented case after case of failures of these useless methods of protecting children. Is this what you want in your own communities? Methods that fail to protect children and the exclusion of the main means for protecting children?

Read US v. ALA and think for yourselves. Use US v. ALA to clear your minds of the ALA propaganda designed to keep your children awash in inappropriate material and exposed to opportunistic criminals.

Please consider my opinions as you decide what's right in your own communities.
32 posted on 11/28/2006 8:38:17 PM PST by plan2succeed.org (www.SafeLibraries.org)
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To: plan2succeed.org

Thanks for the ping. Judith Krug needs to be able to see what she needs to, huh? People need to look at porn? Next they will be requiring the libraries install private little rooms where the pervs can go to do their thing. Why don't they do peep shows at the library too? I've heard strippers describe what they do as free speech. Wouldn't want to censor anyone.


33 posted on 11/28/2006 8:57:48 PM PST by beaversmom
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To: beaversmom
Thanks. Here's more from the people who set the trends in our public libraries:

"Parents who would tell their children not to read Playboy 'don't really care about their kids growing up and learning to think and explore.'" 9/18/95 Citizen, quoting Judith Krug.

"As long as the BSA [Boy Scouts of America] is willing to encourage its youth to come to the library where such diverse writings as the Communist Manifesto, 'Heather has two Mommies' and Playboy can be accessed, we are doing the job of promoting a more open and just society." 4/11/06, James B. Casey, ALA Councilor-at-Large, Head Librarian at Oak Lawn Public Library, Illinois.
34 posted on 11/28/2006 9:29:28 PM PST by plan2succeed.org (www.SafeLibraries.org)
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To: Bushwacker777
If you want to be able to access a blocked web site in any of the software you can just go into administration and release it. But most of the softwares have already removed those sites from their black list which are updated regularly.

When our kids were young they were on a filtered internet service and they were able to find whatever they needed.

35 posted on 11/28/2006 9:37:52 PM PST by Vicki (Washington State where anyone can vote .... illegals, non-residents or anyone just passing through)
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To: Vicki

Filters have greatly improved since then.


36 posted on 11/28/2006 9:53:48 PM PST by plan2succeed.org (www.SafeLibraries.org)
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To: Reeses

Libraries are only relevent anymore for people who want to pick up fiction and children's books. As a research tool, it's dead. Get rid of internet access at the libraries, and recognize that their only function is for people to pick up leisure reading material.


37 posted on 11/28/2006 10:01:18 PM PST by Richard Kimball (I get no respect. I went to the proctologist and he put his finger in my mouth - Rodney Dangerfield)
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To: Esther Ruth
They call you or notify you by email that they are at the library you choose to get them at and then you pick them up.

Libraries are trying to improve but it's cheaper to close the buildings, lay off the government workers, and just mail you the books from a warehouse 500 miles away with a return box similar to how NetFlix operates. But that too will be replaced by web only book reading.

It takes a lot of getting used to but I joined a commercial technical library that has 4,000 always up to date books. I can check out, read online, and download and print chapters for offline reading, without having to wait for someone to return the book. The print quality on a computer screen is not as good as paper but it's catching up. There are other things you can do that can't be done with a book such as google-like text searching. It's a little rough to use but it will get better.

Check out the free Project Gutenberg which has 19,000 books. The number of online-only libraries is growing and now there are university libraries that have only computer terminals, no actual books.

Traditional libraries have become mini-socialist dictatorships. Any book that does not fit the propaganda objectives of the day is lost to the trash bin forever. Leftists have always been the biggest book burners and they have a lock on the neighborhood libraries. Every narcissistic politician wants to build a new vanity library as their legacy. The buildings are impressive but there's never much money left over for buying new books.

38 posted on 11/28/2006 10:23:36 PM PST by Reeses
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To: cyclotic

However, the blocking software keeps out the NRA's website, but NOT the Brady Bunch's! (the gun banners)


39 posted on 12/25/2006 12:54:13 PM PST by 2harddrive (...House a TOTAL Loss.....)
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