Having been banned by the Commonwealth Office of Technology I was somewhat surprised by the reported lifting of the ban. I don’t think it will make much difference in my readership because the ban had more holes than a block of Swiss cheese.
However, while checking the state servers I ran across this edict from on high, the “Internet and Electronic Mail Acceptable Use Policy”. This was originally written in 1996 but was last updated March 18, 2008.
The last section of the document details what a state employee can’t do on the Internet or in email.
I find it somewhat disturbing that commenting on this blog, or any other blog, is considered the same as visiting pornographic sites, pirating software, committing sexual harassment and a number of other undesirable behaviors.
The prohibited uses are listed below:
Prohibited and Unacceptable Uses: Use of Internet and E-mail resources is a privilege that may be revoked at any time for unacceptable use or inappropriate conduct. Any abuse of acceptable use policies may result in notification of agency management, revocation of access and disciplinary action up to and including dismissal. The following activities are, in general, strictly prohibited. With the proper exception approved, employees may be exempt from these prohibitions during the course of job responsibilities and legitimate state government business.
Violations of the rights of any person or company protected by copyright, trade secret, patent or other intellectual property, including but not limited to, the downloading, installation or distribution of pirated software, digital music and video files.
Engaging in illegal activities or using the Internet or E-mail for any illegal purposes, including initiating or receiving communications that violate any state, federal or local laws and regulations, including KRS 434.840-434.860 (Unlawful Access to a Computer) and KRS 512.020 (Criminal Damage to Property Law). This includes malicious use, spreading of viruses, and hacking. Hacking means gaining or attempting to gain the unauthorized access to any computers, computer networks, databases, data or electronically stored information.
Using the Internet and E-mail for personal business activities in a commercial manner such as buying or selling of commodities or services with a profit motive.
Using resources to actively engage in procuring or transmitting material that is in violation of sexual harassment or hostile workplace laws, whether through language, frequency or size of messages. This includes statements, language, images, E-mail signatures or other materials that are reasonably likely to be perceived as offensive or disparaging of others based on race, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, disability, religious or political beliefs.
Using abusive or objectionable language in either public or private messages.
Knowingly accessing pornographic sites on the Internet and disseminating, soliciting or storing sexually oriented messages or images.
Misrepresenting, obscuring, suppressing, or replacing a user’s identity on the Internet or E-mail. This includes the use of false or misleading subject headers and presentation of information in the distribution of E-mail.
Employees are not permitted to use the E-mail account of another employee without receiving written authorization or delegated permission to do so.
Employees are not permitted to forge E-mail headers to make it appear as though an E-mail came from someone else.
Sending or forwarding chain letters or other pyramid schemes of any type.
Sending or forwarding unsolicited commercial E-mail (spam) including jokes.
Soliciting money for religious or political causes, advocating religious or political opinions and endorsing political candidates.
Making fraudulent offers of products, items, or services originating from any Commonwealth account.
Using official resources to distribute personal information that constitutes an unwarranted invasion of personal privacy as defined in the Kentucky Open Records Act, KRS 61.870.
Online investing, stock trading and auction services such as eBay unless the activity is for Commonwealth business.
Developing or maintaining a personal web page on or from a Commonwealth device.
Use of peer-to-peer (referred to as P2P) networks such as Napster, Kazaa, Gnutella, Grokster, Limewire and similar services.
Any other non-business related activities that will cause congestion, disruption of networks or systems including, but not limited to, Internet games, online gaming, unnecessary Listserve subscriptions and E-mail attachments. Chat rooms and messaging services such as Internet Relay Chat (IRC), I SeeK You (ICQ), AOL Instant Messenger, MSN Messenger and similar Internet-based collaborative services.
Posting on blogs or any other interactive media is strictly prohibited.