First, Jeffrey Chester’s Google and Data-Seizure, about the significance of Google’s acquisition of Doubleclick, the internet marketing and company whose business is based on showing banner ads and tracking users’ web surfing. The article is primarily about privacy and what Google’s continuing acquisition of websites means for it (as the data is conglomerated). Second, Tom … Read more Two articles of interest from The Nation
Category: Civil Liberties
A creative MIT student made a thing out of a circuit board and some LEDs and wore it on her shirt. She’s young, 19, so it’s understandable that she didn’t quite understand how things are in airports these days, and when she walked into Logan Airport she was surrounded at gunpoint by security men who … Read more I’m shocked and appalled that you’re shocked and appalled
The New York Tims has a story dated yesterday about a change dictated from the top in the libraries of U.S. Federal Prisons, called the “Standardized Chapel Library Project.” With the rationale of preventing violent religious extremism among prisoners, religious books in Federal prison libraries will now be a standardized collection – 150 books for … Read more No intellectual freedom in U.S. prison chapel libraries
For Immediate Release July 11, 2007 American Library Association urges Congress to reform laws governing the FBI’s use of National Security Letters CHICAGO – The American Library Association’s governing body has unanimously passed a resolution condemning the use of National Security Letters (NSLs) to obtain library records and urging Congress to pursue immediate reforms of … Read more ALA on National Security Letters
Elaine Harger, outgoing coordinator of the ALA Social Responsibilities Round Table, compiled a list of resolutions by ALA Council on the War on Terror, for distribution to congressional offices on Tuesday, which was a day of lobbying during the ALA Conference in Washington, DC. The list is online in PDF form, and also here: American … Read more American Library Association statements re: the “War on Terror”
Al Kagan, letter to IFLA Journal on Freedom of the Press, Social Responsibility and the Danish Cartoons
From Al Kagan: One of my colleagues here has encouraged me to distribute this letter more widely, so here it is. It appears in the latest issue of the IFLA Journal 33, 1 (2007): 5-6. Letter to the Editor Freedom of the Press, Social Responsibility and the Danish Cartoons I would like to comment on … Read more Al Kagan, letter to IFLA Journal on Freedom of the Press, Social Responsibility and the Danish Cartoons
The justice department has been abusing a provision in the PATRIOT Act allowing them to issue “national security letters” to obtain information on citizens (140,000 so far) without a court order and with the famous gag order imposed. The Washington Post has published a revealing article by one of these recipients of a National Security … Read more 140,000 National Security Letters
In Seattle last week ALA passed this Resolution in Support of Immigrants Rights: Resolved, that ALA strongly supports the protection of each person’s civil liberties regardless of that individual’s nationality, residency, or status; and be it further resolved that ALA opposes any legislation that infringes on the rights of anyone in the USA (citizen or … Read more ALA Council supports immigrant rights
The Progressive Librarians Guild has endorsed a resolution by the American Historical Association, titled Resolution on United States Government Practices Inimical to the Values of the Historical Profession. The resolution addresses the Bush Administration’s violations of historic preservation practices and other principles held by historians, in the context of the war in Iraq. The violations … Read more PLG endorses AHA resolution on US gov’t and historical preservation
ALA’s Don Wood has a blog that he uses as a channel for his communications on libraries and intellectual freedom. Today he has a post about the ALA Washington Office and their response to statements by the director of the FBI that they say reveals the Bureau’s continued lack of understanding of libraries and the … Read more Privacy, Libraries, ALA and FBI
Morgan Wilson of explodedlibrary.info has a nice summary of the blog traffic and library-world discussions about the UCLA library taser incident.
Posted with permission December 13, 2006 Dr. Norman Abrams Acting Chancellor University of California at Los Angeles University Chancellor’s Office Box 951405 2147 Murphy Los Angeles, CA 90095-1405 Dear Acting Chancellor Abrams: I was shocked, as were many of the 66,000 members of the American Library Association, to read about and watch the November 14, … Read more ALA President Leslie Burger’s letter to UCLA regarding the taser incident
Today is Human Rights Day. Two sites I will recommend: OHCHR Human Rights Day page Human Rights Education Association Human Rights Day page Also note Toni Samek’s upcoming book: Librarianship and Human Rights, coming out very soon on from Chandos Publishing. Also… Kathleen de la Peña McCook and Kathryn Phenix are working on a book … Read more Human Rights Day
The website of The Progressive magazine has a running feature called McCarthyism Watch, a series of brief articles about present-day attacks on freedom of expression in the United States. A galvanizing collection of information.
The Progressive Librarians Guild approved endorsement of the following Amnesty International statement last night… AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL USA PRESS RELEASE Tuesday, October 17, 2006 Amnesty International Vows to Push for Clarification on Detainee Legislation (Washington, DC) Larry Cox, Amnesty International USA’s Executive Director, issued the following statement in response to President Bush signing the “Military Commissions … Read more The Progressive Librarian’s Guild stands with Amnesty International
Are other people getting the same result when they add these things up? Pentagon monitoring peace activists’ email to “combat terrorism”…. suspending habeas corpus to prevent the fate of (pre-judged) terrorists from being decided by our lenient and overly-fair criminal justice system…. huge prison camps being built by Haliburton subsidiary Kellog, Brown, and Root for … Read more Doing the math
I’ve got a t-shirt that says “Peace” in Arabic. If I attempt to board a flight while wearing it, at least a JetBlue flight, apparently I will not be allowed on the plane. Raed Jarrar showed up for his JetBlue flight with a t-shirt that said, in Arabic and English, “We will not be silent,” … Read more Arabic writing on your t-shirt? Good luck getting on a plane.
Urgent message from the ALA Washington Office: On Wednesday, July 28, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the amended H.R. 5319, the Deleting Online Predators Act (DOPA), by a vote of 410-15. We believe the legislation will now go to the Senate, which may or may not have time to vote on this before their … Read more Contact your Senators about DOPA
The Deleting Online Predators Act (DOPA) would deny E-Rate funds to libraries that do not block whatever social networking sites and chat services the FCC puts on a “bad” list. DOPA has just been passed by the house and is now in the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation. At ALA Annual in New … Read more DOPA Resolution
A new FAIR Action Alert reports that FEMA security guards are blocking journalists from talking to Katrina victims in FEMA trailer parks. FAIR cites the original story from the Baton Rouge Advocate. The report says that FEMA guards told reporters that Katrina victims are “not allowed” to talk to the media, that they “do not … Read more Katrina victims muzzled