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Promoting Online Safety: The Home-School Partnership

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State Court Says Library Not Responsible When Child Accessed Pornography

A California appeals court has held that the City of Livermore cannot be held responsible when a minor used computers at the city library to download sexually explicit photos from the Internet. The court cited the 1996 Communications Decency Act, which protects Internet providers from liability for failing to restrict access to offensive material that was created by others. A parent, identified as "Kathleen R.," had sued after her 12-year-old had used the library's computers on about 10 occasions to download materials and then print them out on a relative's computer.

Under the law, "interactive computer services" are defined as "any information service, system, or access software provider that provides or enables computer access by multiple users to a computer server, including specifically a service or system that provides access to the Internet and such systems operated or services offered by libraries of educational institutions."

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