TTW Mailbox: No Extended Web Surfing

Only School related Work is Allowed

Sarah sent me this note and some images and said I could blog them. Thanks Sarah!

Dear Michael:

A colleague and I were teaching a class called “Cyber Six Pack” about 2.0 tools and I was thrown by the signs that were posted in the computer lab where we taught. Granted, these were in a computer lab in a community college’s library…but they suck the fun out of spending time on the computer at school. Photos were taken with my 3-year-old cell phone, so they aren’t the best quality.

Where to begin?

Number 1: “Absolutely No!”
Number 2: What constitutes as “extended Web surfing?”
Number 3: A shot of the desktop. They reiterated the rules right there on the desktop.

Desktop Display: Reiterated the Rules

To dive deeper into the one about extended Web surfing and not IM-ing, those are two totally useful tools when working on homework. Since a lot of libraries are hip to IM reference, these rules would not allow students to do that! And well, sometimes you have to do “extended Web surfing” to find what you’re looking for…isn’t that just another definition of research anyway?

I could go on forever…but one more thing…I didn’t look around but if that was the “academic computer lab” then where is the lab where you can just hang out, check e-mail, chat with friends? I don’t think this community college has dorms, so it’s not like these kids could just go back to their room and do that. And, if local libraries are saying no to all of the above and they can’t afford a computer/Internet access at home…what’s left for them?

Sarah E. Handgraaf
Web Content Developer
Johnson County Library, Kansas

Sarah, I appreciate your thoughts. Is there another place on the campus for general computer use and hanging out? If I was a student, I’d rather be there than anywhere near this lab where any second someone might appear to tell me I had overstayed my Web welcome! No matter what, this type of language certainly puts a negative slant on doing research/study here.

Maybe these librarians should checkout:

Michael Habib’s thoughts on Academic Library 2.0
The Ubiquitous Librarian (I’d love to see his take on this)
Courtesy Please