Free Internet?


One of the popular services in public libraries is access to Internet. Sometimes this Internet service is referred to as broadband. Broadband commonly refers to high-speed Internet access that is always on and faster than the traditional dial-up access. Broadband includes several high-speed transmission technologies such as: Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) Cable Modem and fiber. Over half of the 237 Indiana public libraries have fiber optic service, with majority of other libraries supported by DSL and cable services. Patrons enjoy the high speed internet connection in the public libraries.

Though the service is free to you at your public library, it is a line item in the public library budget. At this time broadband costs are supported by dollars from the Indiana state budget, the federal government and the local library budget. Professionals at Indiana State Library support the local libraries in their funding requests.

The federal eRate program provides internet discounts for eligible schools and libraries. The eRate program requires the public library to complete a number of application forms over several months to receive the annual discount. The Indiana State Library supports the application process.

The state provides funding support as allocated by the legislature and covers part of the public libraries costs. Every year the costs of broadband services increase because of the need for greater bandwidth. Newer applications and newer website offerings require increased bandwidth. Public libraries and Indiana State Library work hard to meet the needs of Indiana citizens for broadband speeds.

The public libraries in Indiana are able to offer patrons high speed internet connection. The robust broadband connectivity is there to respond to patron requests either on their personal devices or through the public library electronic resources. To find out about the internet access and computers at your public library follow this link Internet Access & Computers.

This blog post was written by Karen Ainslie, Library Development Librarian and Professional Development Office Librarian. For more information, contact the Library Development Office at (317) 232-3697 or email