Internet Policies: State and Local Government Guidelines

By Holt, Jeri Ann | Government Finance Review, April 1998 | Go to article overview

Internet Policies: State and Local Government Guidelines


Holt, Jeri Ann, Government Finance Review


Editor's note: The following is adapted from an article that appeared in Maine Townsman, January 1998, published by the Maine Municipal Association (MMA).

Before municipal officials connect to the Internet and make e-mail capability available, there should be policies in effect to protect the municipality and to make clear the rights and responsibilities of employees using the system. The Center for Technology in Government conducted a two-year study of government use of the Internet. As part of this study they looked at Internet policies around the nation. They concluded that there were various styles of policies; however, three main areas were included in most government Internet policies:

* Uses of the Internet: reasons to connect and an examination of the pluses and minuses;

* Security: protection of documents and assigned responsibility; and

* Employee rights/responsibilities: behavioral guidelines for employees.

The necessary policies can be written separately or can be combined into one Internet policy. For the purposes of discussion here, they will be divided into the three separate policy issues: Internet Acceptable Use Policy; E-mail Policy; and Policy for Retention of E-mail. This article will deal with the Internet Policy.

Internet acceptable use policies contain the elements described below.

Statement of Purpose

A purpose statement explains why the Internet policy is being written. Some sample language:

"Electronic mail, Internet, and telecommunication access are resources made available to city employees to communicate with each other, other governmental entities, companies and individuals for the benefit of the city." - City of Portland, Maine

"To ensure that use of the Internet among employees of the City of Seattle is consistent with City policies, all applicable laws, and the individual user's job responsibilities. To establish basic guidelines for appropriate use." - City of Seattle, Washington

"The agency connection to the global Internet exists to facilitate the official work of -----. The Internet facilities and services will contribute broadly to the missions of -----. The Internet connection and services are provided for employees and persons legitimately affiliated with ----- for the efficient exchange of information and the completion of assigned responsibilities consistent with the ----- statutory purposes. The use of the Internet facilities by any employee or other person authorized must be consistent with this Acceptable Use Policy and security policies."

- State of New York

Acceptable/Unacceptable Use

The next section should be the policy statements that would include acceptable and unacceptable activities. These statements should

* indicate appropriate use and/or prohibit anything but work-related activities;

* prohibit downloading and/or distributing copyrighted materials or software;

* prohibit unlawful activities or solicitations; and

* reserve the right to monitor transactions. Software is available to track sites visited and the amount of time spent at each site. Some sample language:

"The system is city property and intended for city business. The system is not to be used for employee personal gain or to support or to advocate for non-city-related business or purposes." - City of Portland, Maine

"All use of the Internet must be in compliance with all applicable laws and policies (federal, state and local, in addition to city policies); for example sexual harassment. Internet access via city resources, therefore, must not be used for illegal purposes." - City of Seattle, Washington

"Principles of Acceptable Use.

Users are required:

* To respect the privacy of other users; for example, users shall not intentionally seek information on, obtain copies of, or modify files or data, belonging to other users, unless explicit permission to do so has been obtained. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Internet Policies: State and Local Government Guidelines
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.