Privacy at Your Library
How Everett Roehl Marshfield Public Library Manages Your Privacy
No Record of Computer Activities
After you log on to a library computer, the Library has no record of what you do during your session. When you log out, your entire session is wiped, so the next user has no way of accessing your information.
Marshfieldlibrary.org is encrypted with HTTPS, meaning all communications between your browser and the library website are private.
Your online, telephone, and in-person questions for library staff are confidential and private.
The Library does not keep a record of your borrowing activities. Once you return your item, that record is wiped from your account unless you enable the Maintain Reading History on your account. If an item accumulates late fees a record of the title will remain on the account.
Confidentiality of Patron Records
This policy details how the Library ensures the confidentiality of patron records.
Records of Minors
If a public library cardholder is under the age of 18, the parent or legal guardian listed on the account can request their child's records if that parent or legal guardian has the child's library card. If a public library cardholder is under the age of 16 and the child’s library card is not available, the parent or legal guardian listed on the account can request their child’s records by filling out a Custodial Parent/Guardian Certification for Access to Children’s Records form.
This provision includes information on how Everett Roehl Marshfield Public Library manages circulation records and other identifying records.
Library vendors (e.g. Overdrive, Value Line, Novelist, etc.) have their own privacy policies. Sites may or may not be HTTPS. Check site addresses and policies for more information.
How the Library Community Champions Patron Privacy
ALA Statement on Privacy
Privacy and confidentiality are so important to the American Library Association (ALA) that it not only includes a statement about it in its Code of Ethics, but it also details these values in Privacy: An Interpretation of the Library Bill of Rights. Additionally, the ALA offers a list of State Privacy Laws Regarding Library Records.
CLA Resolution on Privacy Rights & Open Government
The California Library Association (CLA) has published a resolution confirming the need to support privacy and open government. Its Intellectual Freedom Committee continues to support efforts to promote patron privacy and confidentiality.
Section 215 of the Patriot Act
This part of the Patriot Act is also known as the "library provision". To learn more about Section 215, check out these resources:
- Librarians vs. The Patriot Act – a recording from On the Media.
- Long Before Snowden, Librarians Were Anti-Surveillance Heroes – article that explores the history of libraries championing privacy and confidentiality.
Library Freedom Project
This project advocates for privacy literacy. Discover what other libraries are doing to educate people about privacy.
ALA Privacy Guidelines
The Office of Intellectual Freedom released privacy guidelines intended to assist librarians, libraries, schools and vendors to develop best practices for online privacy and data management and security.
Want to learn more about privacy topics? The Virtual Privacy Lab at San José Public Library helps you to generate custom privacy toolkits geared towards your online needs. The toolkits include links, tips, and resources that assist you to customize your online identity. Email or print your privacy toolkit for future use.