3 comments on “Summary of blog treatment of UCLA library taser incident

  1. Sorry, but that blog post is inaccurate as a summary in at least one very important respect.

    The first and shamefully the only organization which condemned the tasering of the Iranian-American student at UCLA’s Powell Library, prior to the extremely belated — if finally very forthright and eloquent– response of ALA through the office of its president, was the official statement of the Progressive Librarians Guild (PLG).

    The impression that is given in this post is that somehow ACRL through ACRLog condemned the incident. This is absolutely and quite unfortunately not the case. The fact that an ACRL blog had a comment on the matter is nothing to do with the organization taking a public position on the affair. The ACRLog’s Barbara Fister pondering the meaning of the tasering incident is not the same as ACRL “condemning” it, nor, strictly speaking, did Ms. Fister condemn it in her blog, merely considering it editorially.

    Also, for the record, an examination of the actual discussions on the PLG and ALA Council lists, shows it was largely through the intervention of PLG in ALA’s Council where support was rallied for a statement that ALA was finally moved to actually voice its protest, long after PLG’s public call for librarians to speak out against the police brutality and violation of patrons’ rights.

    Better late than never. And it was, finally, a powerful statement made by ALA President Leslie Burger. We thank her for that.

    But ACRL has yet to weigh in on this matter, , never mind being not being an early responder as somehow suggested. It is a good question why not.


    It is interesting to note that ALA President Leslie Burger –with a token blog of her own, sedate to the point of being sedentary, and seemingly created mostly to indicate she is, somehow, in spirit, down with the Library 2.0 crew– despite the fact that she ultimately wrote a letter of protest to UCLA’s Abram’s after it became clear that at least some ALA Councilors were gravely disturbed by the incident and demanding an official response, never saw fit to blog about the events or even to post her very own letter on her blog!

    Not up-beat enough, I guess.

    I wonder how the letter she wrote is being publicized , if at all, by ALA.

  3. I wasn’t sure whether ACRLog spoke officially for ACRL. Such questions can open a can of worms, and I hoped to get around that by just mentioning the source, ACRLog (nowhere did I mention ACRL). That first paragraph is not intended to be a rundown of official actions by library organizations, but rather an account of responses from sources associated with library organizations. But your point is well made, the PLG was the first (and only, so far) library organization to issue a public condemnation of the taser incident. Let’s hope other official responses will follow!

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