San Mateo County Library Website Terms and Conditions

The San Mateo County Library (“SMCL” or the “Library”) has created and maintains and certain related websites (“SMCL Websites”) in order to make information about its programs, collections and resources available to the public via the internet. By using the SMCL Websites and their content, you are agreeing to comply with and be bound by the following Terms and Conditions. These Terms and Conditions may change from time to time, and we encourage you to review them periodically. Your use of the SMCL Websites evidences your acceptance of these Terms and Conditions, and any changes to them in existence at the time of your use.

Use of Content from SMCL Websites

The Library encourages its users to use materials from the SMCL Websites, provided that you follow these guidelines:

Materials downloaded from the SMCL Websites may only be used for personal, educational, or research purposes. They may not be used for commercial purposes.

You are responsible for obtaining necessary permissions. The SMCL Websites contain a wide range of content. They contain materials that are in the public domain as well as materials that are protected by copyright. In cases where materials on the SMCL Websites are protected by third party rights, you are responsible for clearing the necessary rights in order to use the materials in question. For example, if you want to download a photo that is still protected by copyright for use in a research paper, you must determine whether your proposed use requires consent from the copyright holder, and, if so, you must secure the permission of the copyright holder. In some cases, you may also need to secure the consent of people who appear in photographs in our collections.

We are not in a position to provide advice to users about which materials are protected by third party rights and which materials may be used freely. The following website has information about copyright, fair use and other related topics which may be useful:

It is your obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other use restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials from the Library's collections. You are solely responsible for determining whether the use of any digital object requires the permission of any other person or entity, and you are responsible for paying any associated fees. If you have questions about the legal issues surrounding the use of digital objects you should contact your attorney.

Online Privacy Policy

Information provided by users to the Library is governed by the San Mateo County Library Online Privacy Policy. By using SMCL’s Websites and services, you signify your acceptance of this Online Privacy Policy. We encourage you to read the Online Privacy Policy.

User Generated Content

SMCL encourages users to become involved in interactive portions of our website, by participating in online discussions and, in some cases, uploading content. User generated content is governed by the San Mateo County Library User Generated Content Policy. By using SMCL Websites and services, you signify your acceptance of this User Generated Content Policy. We encourage you to read the User Generated Content Policy.

Linking Policy

SMCL Websites provide a limited number of links to websites not owned or managed by the SMCL. SMCL has not participated in the development of these other sites and does not exert any editorial or other control over these sites. SMCL is providing these links only as a convenience, and the inclusion of any link does not imply endorsement by the Library or any association with their operators. Linking to websites is governed by the San Mateo County Library Linking Policy. By using SMCL Websites and services, you signify your acceptance of this Linking Policy. We encourage you to read the Linking Policy.

Third Party Websites

Among the many services offered by the Library is access to databases provided by third parties. These databases are subject to their own terms and conditions. Please review the terms and conditions specific to each database you intend to use and make sure that you comply with the applicable rules. Some of the Library’s other resources may also be subject to their own terms and conditions; in each instance, we ask that you review the terms and conditions before using the product in question so that you can comply with them.


The San Mateo County Public Library is committed to ensuring accessibility of its website for people with disabilities. All reasonable effort has been made to ensure that the pages of this website comply with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act Amendments of 1998. (29 U.S.C. 794d). Section 508 requires that individuals with disabilities, who are members of the public seeking information or services from a government agency, have access to and use of information and data that is comparable to that provided to the public who are not individuals with disabilities, unless an undue burden would be imposed on the agency.


  1. All materials on the SMCL Websites are provided "as is" without a warranty of any kind, either express or implied, including but not limited to the implied warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular use, and/or non-infringement. The Library assumes no responsibility for damage to your computer or other property resulting from your use of the SMCL Websites. You understand and agree that any downloading or obtaining of material or data through the SMCL Websites is done at your own risk. In addition, we disclaim any and all responsibility or liability for the accuracy, reliability, and legality of materials found on the SMCL Websites.In no event shall the SMCL or the SMCL’s employees or affiliated entities be liable for any direct, indirect, special, incidental, consequential, exemplary or punitive damages arising from, or directly or indirectly related to, the use of, or the inability to use, the SMCL Websites or the content, materials and functions related thereto.
  2. Some pages on the SMCL Websites include links to other websites. The Library has not reviewed all of these websites and is not responsible for the content of these websites. The Library provides these links as a convenience only, and a link does not imply endorsement of, sponsorship of, or affiliation with the linked site by the Library.
  3. The Library offers access to a broad range of information and materials, including certain materials that may contain offensive language or negative stereotypes. You should view such materials in the historical context in which they were created. All historical media are presented as specific, original artifacts, without further enhancement to their appearance or quality, as a record of the era in which they were produced. Opinions expressed on the SMCL Websites are not necessarily those of the Library or its staff.


You agree to defend, indemnify and hold SMCL and its employees and agents harmless from any and all claims, liabilities, costs and expenses, including reasonable attorneys' fees, arising in any way from or relating to your use of the SMCL Websites, your placement or transmission of any message, content, information, software or other materials through the SMCL Websites, or your breach or violation of the law or of these Terms and Conditions. Your obligation to indemnify includes the obligation to pay for the cost of defense. However, SMCL reserves the right, at its own expense, to assume the exclusive defense and control of any matter otherwise subject to indemnification by you, and in such case, you agree to cooperate with SMCL’s defense of such claim. Your obligation to indemnify and defend is triggered by notification from us that SMCL has been served with a claim or suit within the scope of this indemnity.