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Category Archives: Intellectual Freedom

Would Jesus be Deported?

His name sounds Middle Eastern, he speaks truth to power, some of his associates are scorned or suspect. My jaw dropped when I read Hoder’s post, but should I really be surprised to see the U.S. Border Patrol refusing reentrance to a Canadian who had been in New York City for one month and had […]

Pass Me the Chicken Chests, Please: Keillor Cancelled in Kentucky

In yet more proof that we are descending into a living version of The Handmaid’s Tale, a radio station at the University of Kentucky cancelled Writer’s Almanac, that nice daily tidbit, for using such gross obscenities as the word “breast.” Hello, UK SLIS: are you posting? I know it’s fashionable in some circles to snub […]

Naked in Naperville

I’ve been pondering the decision by Naperville Public Library to fingerprint its patrons with a technology created by Biometrics, USA, also based in Naperville (thanks, Jessamyn). ALA staff told American Libraries, “As with filtering and privacy concerns, library staff also need to commit to a conversation with their users, communicating frequently and well about changes […]

Tulsa Caves in to Censors

“(Tulsa, Oklahoma) Two days after Oklahoma lawmakers passed a resolution telling publicly funded libraries that books written for children about gay families should be placed in Adults Only sections, Tulsa libraries have moved the books from ‘impressionable eyes’.” The library director called this a “balancing act.” I’d call it a fall from grace. She says […]

ALA Corrects Mueller’s “Big Lie” About Patron Privacy

ALA President Carol Brey-Casiano has come out with a brisk and articulate retort to FBI Director Mueller’s statement that library records aren’t protected. “Library records are, in fact, protected by written laws. In 48 states, laws declare that a person’s library records are private and confidential; the remaining two states, Kentucky and Hawaii, have attorneys’ […]

Yes, I Have a Tinfoil Chapeau

Over at It’s All Good, Alane asks something I’ve heard from time to time: why are we so knee-jerk about patron confidentiality? When it comes to encouraging technologies that trade a little patron privacy for convenience, we can be party-poopers. The answer is yes, sometimes we go farther than we need to on behalf of […]

Blog/Anti-Blog Tension Escalates As North Korea Rattles Saber at Boing Boing

Tensions between bloggers and the terminally unclueful escalated on March 7, when North Korea denounced Boing Boing, saying the popular blog was “inconsiderate” for linking to their website and thereby driving up traffic. Boing Boing backed down from its hyperlinked aggression and met North Korea’s demands to load the content on its own site. Thanks […]

Illegitimate Citizen Journalism and its Discontents

Ouch! Bloggers (and the First Amendment) just lost round 1 of a legal fight about protecting confidential sources. “In a case with implications for the freedom to blog, a San Jose judge tentatively ruled Thursday that Apple Computer can force three online publishers to surrender the names of confidential sources who disclosed information about the […]

Update on Batesline Debacle

Last night ALA President-elect Michael Gorman responded to my second request for an explanation about his cryptic comments about Tulsa World’s harassment of the Batesline blogger. I’ll print his post to the Council list, and my response. “Dear Ms. Schneider I am sorry to have kept you waiting for an explanation. It is in the letter […]

Media Bloggers Association to the Rescue

Read all about it: the counsel for the Media Bloggers Association is representing Michael D. Bates in response to the allegations of the Tulsa World that by linking to and briefly quoting from articles, Bates had violated copyright law. The Media Bloggers Association represents bloggers who are “actively blogging on the topic of news/political media.” […]