Utah Library Enforces Partial Game Ban

Today may be National Gaming @ Your Libary Day, but one local library in Utah has placed restrictions on game access.

Utah’s KSL-5 reports that officials of the Eagle Mountain Library found that teens were monopolizing its PCs in order to play online games. Spokesperson Linda Peterson commented:

There were students and adults who needed to use computers for research that were having to wait too long and, you know, getting frustrated by that.

The Eagle Mountain Library’s game ban extends only from 2-5 p.m. on weekdays.

GP: Someone in Utah apparently didn’t get the memo about the gaming at the library concept. KSL-5 notes that several other libraries in the same county have even harsher restrictions on games.

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  1. MomGamer says:

    But litiginous temper tantrums against public officials are?

    Or do you think the public doesn’t fund the online court system websites you use to submit your cut-and-pasted nonsense?

  2. Zevorick says:

    And the first time you utter to someone who disagrees with you "that’s not very mormon like of you" and "you’re being so very mormonic" you’ll be chased out with pitchforks and flaming torches…

  3. michelleobamarama says:

    Apparently GP didn’t get the memo that playing games on publicly-funded computers is not a legitimate expenditure of public funds.  Duh. 

  4. Demontestament says:

    "There were students and adults who needed to use computers for research that were having to wait too long and, you know, getting frustrated by that."

    By research does she mean porn and myspace? Nobody goes to the library anymore to do research, most librarys around my house are ghost towns.

  5. Derovius says:

     What kind of person actually uses a public computer? Someone needs to sit them down with that article that shows public keyboards are covered in more germs than toilets in public washrooms.

  6. Austin_Lewis says:

    A person too stupid to realize that you should probably spend more money on housing than your car.  That’s like putting up a sign that says ‘please gouge my car door with your key because I’m an obnoxious frat-boy type’.

    Of course, he could be like my father, who, when he and my mother divorced, took his porsche and rented an appartment nearby.  Of course, his car did get gouged.

  7. Spekkio says:

    I don’t see this as a big deal, but I want to make it clear (where people will see) that gaming at libraries is not necessarily a bad thing. The profession (librarianship) is divided on the issue, but generally libraries are not just for books or work anymore. Libraries are for both learning and leisure. And as I said earlier, many communities determine library funding based on how much they are used. They don’t track how they’re being used – just how many people in the community make use of the resources.

    Spekkio, Master of war

  8. DeepThorn says:

    I think they should only be banned if other people are in need of the computers when they are on them, but other than that.  Yeah…

    Now if they do use the library on certain days as a gaming location to try to draw in more youth to read, then they shot themselves in the foot by not stating clear rules.

    AND WHO THE HELL STOMPS ON THE FLOOR IN THE APARTMENT ABOVE ME…  There is about to become some physical abuse on someone’s Porsche 911…  (Seriously, who owns a Porshe and lives in an apartment anyways… freakin drunk…)

    Nido Web Flash Tutorials AS2 and AS3 Tutorials for anyone interested.
    How to set Xbox 360 Parental Controls

  9. Zevorick says:

    I’m not against a ban on gaming in libraries. To be honest, I wouldn’t want to game on the hideous pieces of garbage at my local library anyway…

    What I think they SHOULD support, is designated areas for Dungeons and Dragons. Anyone who thinks there is no reading/math/logical thinking/imagination involved with tabletop D&D is a retarded caveman/woman 😉

  10. Austin_Lewis says:

    This is a public library.  You don’t go there to fuck around, you go there to read or get work done. 

    Now, if the library has enough computers or extra money and wants to hold events for gaming every so often or cordon off part of the library for gaming every so often, that’s great.  But when people can’t use the library for research because there’s a bunch of pre-teens playing runescape with our tax dollars, something needs to be done.

  11. illspirit says:

    Err, just last year, they helped get the ‘background check improvement’ act passed. Which the Bradys, VPC, et al referred to as the biggest gun control law in years. This built on the previous Brady background check law from ’94, which the NRA also supported (after getting the 7-day waiting period removed). And for the last decade or so, they’ve been working with the DOJ and the Sates on "Project Exile" which is designed to get criminals who use guns off the streets.

    As I said in a response further downstream, we’re fighting other things for good reason..

  12. illspirit says:

    We’re fighting the lost-and-stolen laws because they violate the Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination. These laws run the risk of criminalizing innocent victims of theft if they didn’t notice the crime within the allotted time. Like, say, if their firearms were stolen while on vacation, or even a cabinet in the garage or something which they haven’t looked at in the last 24/48 hours. Imagine going out of town on Friday, coming back Sunday night, then you don’t notice you’re garage has been broken into until Mondy after work. You then call the police to report the theft, only to find out some crackhead held up a liquor store Friday with your gun which he stole hours after you left. Oops. You just admitted to a "crime."

    These laws cannot be used against actual gun traffickers anyway because the Fifth doesn’t allow a law which compels them to report themselves. This is the same reason felons are exempt from gun registrations and such. Not that criminals would follow the law either way. As such, lost-and-stolen laws only burden the law abiding.

    And there’s no such thing as a "gun show loophole." All the laws which apply outside a fun show apply within. Possibly more so when you consider there’s almost always a significant ATF (and local law enforcement) presence at fun shows, ready to crush gun dealers for so little as a punctuation error on a form. The reason we say ‘democrats are trying to put gun shows out of business’ is because they (and a number of Republicans like John McCain..) are trying to put them out of business. The national law which the Brady Campaign and friends have been trying to get passed has so many hoops to jump through that it would be impossible for anyone to comply. If nobody can comply, gun shows go out of business. That is their intent.

  13. nighstalker160 says:

    I wouldn’t be opposed to a game ban in libraries.  But you should consider:

    Some people still don’t have computers

    Other people don’t have internet or adequate internet and gaming today has evolved from a largely solitary hobby into a social one. 

    For example: I have three friends from high school, two of which live in New York, one in Oklahoma (Air Force) and I live in Virginia.  We can still "hang out" as it were through World of Warcraft, Diablo II, or other online games.  With voice chat and broadband connections we can actually DO something together as opposed to just chatting on the phone.  It’s fun.

    This broadens the discussion somewhat beyond a pure discussiong of games in libraries.  But still, the point is that gaming is not the largely solitary activity it was years ago.  You’re not just sitting on your couch interacting with a console anymore, you’re playing with REAL people through the game.  Toss in a headset which lets you talk to those people and you’re talking a social interaction here.

    Like I said, I wouldn’t be opposed to a library banning games during regular business hours or only allowing games for a couple of hours a day.  I do think the idea of a "Saturday Game Day" from like 7pm-9pm or something is a great idea.  Especially if they take "donations."  A library could make a lot of money that way.

    It also must be said that gaming is not a hobby solely of the young anymore.  The average age of a gamer is in the mid 20’s now and rising.  Those of us who great up with the NES are in college or graduate school now.  The idea of gaming as a "children’s activity" is not accurate anymore.

  14. LAG - Law Abiding Gamer says:

    This comment takes an all-or-nothing approach, which I think is counterproductive.  I agree with the sentiment I think…that games shouldn’t be allowed to dominate the computers at the library.  However, I also agree with other posters here who bring up the point that gaming is a big part of young (and not so young) culture, and to be excluded due to economic reasons only serves to widen the gap between the "haves" and the "have nots". 

    Maybe a better solution than a simplistic ban would be to set a percentage of the library’s computers aside for "general use", and reserve the rest for academic or research use only.  Another possibility is to issue timed logins when the user arrives.  They get a login code at the reservation desk that is good for an hour of use.  After that hour, the computer returns to a login screen, and the user must get another login code to continue use, giving others a chance to use the system as well. 


    ***Homicide-free video gaming since 1972!***

  15. Neeneko says:

    I know in PA the NRA is still fighting the requirement to report ‘stolen’ firearms (a common way to slip large quantities into criminial channels) and nationally they have been fighting closing the gun show loophole in sales under the idea that ‘democrats are trying to put gun shows out of buisness’.  Those are two examples.

  16. Father Time says:

    Oh I’m sure that gamers who actually go to that library won’t be happy about that. But still I’ve heard from multiple sources that the NRA suppots background checks, do forgive me for asking but do you have a source?


    "What for you bury me in the cold cold ground?" – Tasmanian devil

  17. Neeneko says:

    The NRA of the last 40 years bares almost no resembelence to the organization I see today.   They used to be good,  orginization that, as you point out, really helped with drafting laws that have had a positive effect. 

    That was the past.  The NRA of today just blindly fights any regulation as ‘liberals taking away our guns!’, even laws that make sense.

    Moving forward, one thing that will be important for the game community of the present to keep in mind (as our numbers and political influcence grows) is to NOT have the same thing happen to us.

  18. Neeneko says:

    The analogy holds in that the current leadership of the NRA have taken a ‘no comprimise’ approach to gun regulation and fight ANYTHING that regulates guns at all.. which is what I am saying gamers are not doing.

  19. Father Time says:

    Dude that’s not a good comparison. The libraries computers are public/government propety so as such the library can regulate things such as that as it pleases. Guns are for the most part private property.

    It’s like saying ‘if you’re going to be using our computers you must follow these rules’ vs. ‘if you come into contact with any computer you must follow these rules’.


    "What for you bury me in the cold cold ground?" – Tasmanian devil

  20. hayabusa75 says:

    You don’t necessarily need a designated day, just consistent rules on allowed play time per person, like Cerabret100 was saying.

    "I have not seen any middle school level kid or higher read any book or check anything out from the times I’ve been there"

    Maybe I should have said, "as reading and writing USED TO BE."  My bad. =)

    "There is no sin except stupidity." – Oscar Wilde

  21. PHOENIXZERO says:

    I actually agree with Amen4u on this for the most part, if they have a designated day for it then fine but it’s annoying as hell to see kids in there hogging the computers to play Runescape. I’ll go one step further and wish they’d block social networking sites as well.

    Youth, reading? Hahahahaha. I have not seen any middle school level kid or higher read any book or check anything out from the times I’ve been there. Creativity and using ones imagination is largely dead with a lot of teenagers and actually let’s not just single out teens, same goes for many adults too. Not to mention all the literacy issues and people who can’t put together a sentence that is at least half-way coherent..

  22. PHOENIXZERO says:

    This is nothing new or all that shocking, my library at one time did pretty much the same thing, though I wouldn’t call it a ban. Really cuts down on the idiots who go in just to play a came and hog the computers. Unfortunately they didn’t keep up with it so they’re all back and either playing games like Runescape or some flash based games and mess with MySpace or other stupid "social networking" sites. >_<

  23. hellfire7885 says:

    I’m surprised a cerain someone isn’t i nhere gleefully bragging about the state that gave him a hunk of bronze.

  24. hayabusa75 says:

    What about all the kids who belong to families who can’t afford today’s systems and games?  Gaming is as common a pasttime to today’s youths as reading and writing, maybe more so.  If games have come to the point where they deserve the same protections and rights as other media, why SHOULDN’T they have a place in the library?

    God forbid we encourage something that keeps kids in a safe, fun environment and OFF the streets.

    Amen4u, this comment is directed at you as well.

    "There is no sin except stupidity." – Oscar Wilde

  25. PHX Corp says:

    We don’t need games in a Library, we have them at home so can we still rent them in a Library, a library is not an arcade (They are still welcome to do Gaming in your Library day but only for that day)

  26. gamadaya says:

    I wish they would do this at my university library.


    Internet troll > internet paladin

  27. Cecil475 says:

    Tell that to the other libraries that have Saturday as a gaming day. The one nearest to me doesent have it. Me personally, I go there to check out books. The only time I used the internet there was to have something printed out. Do I think it should be banned in all libraries? dunno. but it would have the problem of having all the computers tied up, so I see where they are comming from. I would personally would play what computer games I have @ home. On my computer. and trust me. I don’t own many.

     – Warren Lewis

    R.i.P GamePolitics 2005-2016

  28. Arcanagos says:

    I dont have a problem with this, the computers are there for work purposes anyway, plus, they’re the library’s computers and they’re allowed to dictate how people are allowed to use them

  29. illspirit says:

    Huh? I’m prety sure the NRA would support an analogous rule against using library books for target practice..

    And I’m not sure where you’ve been for the last 40something years, but they’ve supported (and in some cases wrote) most of the gun laws at the Federal level. So, yea, you can stop patting yourself on the back now.

  30. Weatherlight says:

    I wouldn’t even call this a ban. Its just an additional restriction on computer usage. The public library near my house already has the same thing in place because the kids would come over after school and tie up the computers until their parents came to pick them up. There actually was a sign that said the librarian’s were not baby sitters and they would throw people out if they were deemed to be loitering, playing hand held games, or using phones. This was an extreme case, but was needed to keep the library usable.


  31. GRIZZAM PRIME says:

    I agree with this. If I need to look up some important information on the library computers, I don’t want to have to put up with some asshole using the public computers to check on his Dark Elf.


    -Remember kids, personal responsibility is for losers! -The Buck Stops Here.

  32. Neeneko says:

    And here you go.. gamers looking at a common sense restriction on game use and NOT being up in arms about the restriction calling it unfair and bias and evil etc.   This is a good thing and a wonderful example that gamers are not a bunch of single-minded idiots.

    Now, for an additional pat on the back, think about how NRA officals (or certain voval supporters) react to ANY gun restriction,.. and they are  well respected group.   Gratz gamers, maturity for the win.

  33. Cerabret100 says:

    our school computer had blocked sites on them too.  Me and my friends knew how to get around them, but I hate most online games (such as the aforementioned Runescape) and I usually didn’t have time to goof around anyway.

  34. LaxGamer34 says:

    im really not against this. In the public library connected to my old high school, you were only allowed two hours on the omputer, and you had to sign in with your library card, and they blocked sites like Myspace, Facebook and game sites so those computers could be used for actual work.

    and it worked, too

  35. Baruch_S says:

    Meh, big deal. The library in my town had a one-hour limit and made you sign up for that hour. Once the hour was up, the librarians would chase you off the computer if someone else needed it. You’d still see some kids who played musicals computers to play online games all day, but if there was ever genuine need for the computers, those kids got kicked off first. A game ban just makes it easier for the librarians because they won’t have to police the computers.

    On a side note, do these online "games" really count for much? I’ve yet to see kids play a halfway decent game on a library computer. They don’t even play the better flash games; it’s always some sort of uninteresting RPG. I want walk up to them and tell them to buy a Gameboy (an original one) and play some real games.

  36. Spekkio says:

    Library resources are for everyone in the community and are for every legal purpose – including leisure play. Placing restrictions on what people can do with library resources just means that fewer people use the library. And that’s not a good thing because many, many communities allocate funding to libraries based on usage. The fewer people that use the library (for whatever purpose) the less money they get, and then the more likely they close their doors. The city of Philadelphia just shut down a bunch of their libraries.

    Spekkio, Master of war

  37. Spekkio says:

    Actually, libraries do their damndest to avoid acting in loco parentis. That opens a huge can of worms that they just don’t want to deal with. (I’m an MLIS student.)

    Spekkio, Master of war

  38. nightwng2000 says:

    In all honesty?  I’m not really bothered by this.  When you mix the computers for general use, you do risk this problem.

    Two ways, among many, to solve the problem:

    1.  Segregate out computers for research versus "leisure" use.  I’m not sure if a library user is required to enter their personal code to access the computer or not there.  Here in Wilmington, NC, you have to enter your library card number.  Set up strict Parental Control systems on the research computers to limit their use.  A violator is banned (limited or long term or permanent).

    2.  Limit the amount of time a patron can use the computer per day.  Sucks, but may be necessary.  Here in Wilmington, NC, the system is set for 30 minutes per day.  Or was the last time used the library computer more than 5 years ago.  Variations are also possible.  An hour per day.  Thirty minutes every 3 or 6 hours.  Etc.

    The library has many uses.  And I’ve already been on my soapbox about Parents moderating game play.  Seems only right that the library do the same.


    NW2K Software

    Nightwng2000 has also updated his MySpace page: http://www.myspace.com/nightwing2000 Nightwng2000 is now admin to the group "Parents For Education, Not Legislation" on MySpace as http://groups.myspace.com/pfenl

  39. King of Fiji says:

    The library near me has seperate computers for kids and adults and even then one is only allowed an hour at a time unless they have a valid reason for needing the time extended so yeah I fail to see the problem with this as well.

  40. Father Time says:

    What part of Raleigh, I used to live there. Anyway our library has limited time for everyone and you have to check in with the librarians to use it.


    "What for you bury me in the cold cold ground?" – Tasmanian devil

  41. Cecil475 says:

    Besides, This is a weekday ban. Wasn’t gaming day @ the library held on Saturdays?

    Edit: Nightwng, I think the library near me is the same way. I’m still in Raleigh, btw.

     – Warren Lewis

    Edit 2: grammar

    R.i.P GamePolitics 2005-2016

  42. PoisonedV says:

    Yes, damn that library for making computers available for information, studying, and learning instead of for letting 12 year olds play runescape for a idiotic holiday they didn’t participate in!

  43. Michael Chandra says:

    Sounds fair. Of course at our libraries we have to pay for it and I’d play Runescape since at home we had dial-up and weren’t allowed to use it much. Plus no lines here, enough computers around.

  44. Bennett Beeny says:

    Yup.  Library computers should be used primarily for research purposes, not for playing games.

    For some reason this reminds me of those old public phone booths back in the ’80s – it used to be REALLY frustrating when some moron used a public phone booth to make call after call while people were waiting.  I can totally understand how it would be frustrating to be doing some research in a public library and to have to wait for some idiot to be done with a game.

  45. Cerabret100 says:

    Makes perfectly logical sense.  My library has a one hour limit, unless no one is waiting in line.

    The only real game restriction they have is no Runescape, for some reason it messes with the timer that keeps track of how long you’ve been on.

  46. GoodRobotUs says:

    LOL Well, as a student, I can understand how frustrating it is when you cannot get access to the information you need to finish up a project or report, and as a gamer, I know how absorbing and time consuming a game can get, that’s why you should always get any studying out of the way before kicking off a computer game, so I can sort of understand how the library feels 🙂

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