Library considers internet filters
San Antonio Public Libraries not in compliance with Children's Internet Protection Act
SAN ANTONIO – The San Antonio Public Library Board of Trustees held a public hearing Wednesday to get input from citizens about the library installing internet filters on its computers.
The filters would block access to pornography and other sites with questionable material that could be harmful to children.
Right now San Antonio's library system is not complying with the Children's Internet Protection Act, adding the filters would help bring them in compliance and keep children from accessing adult sites online.
JeanBrady, Chair of the SAPL Board of Trustees said even though the library doesn't have a big problem with adults or kids accessing adult sites they are still in violation of CIPA.
To fall into compliance they would have to install some kind of internet filter on all of their public computers.
The board has looked at several ways of filtering content but at this point they have not decided which one to use but Brady said the filters would be able to be turned off and on by library staff.
While some critics have argued the filters violate the First Amendment by limiting free speech, aSupreme Court case found that the use of filters by public libraries does not violate the First Amendment.
Brady said by not complying with the law the library is missing out on funding from the government.
"The second phase of CIPA entitles us to more funding for technology so if we proceed on this track then we would get more funding," Brady said. "And you know, we're a public institution and we want to do what's best for children in San Antonio and for our citizens."
The majority of people who spoke at the public hearing were in support of the filters. The board will take those comments into consideration and will vote whether or not to install the devices sometime in October.
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