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Category Archives: Censorship

American Library Association (ALA) Condemns Proposed State Legislation Limiting Access to Information on Reproductive Health

“The Executive Board of the American Library Association (ALA) issued the following statement in response to proposed state legislation that would censor library materials or put at risk library workers who provide access to information, including information on abortion or any aspect of reproductive health care. ALA stands committed to the free, fair, and unrestricted exchange of ideas, and the right of library patrons to seek information free from observation or unwanted surveillance by the government or other third parties, in accordance with the law and the U.S. Constitution. ALA opposes policies and legislation that ban content, restrict access to information, or compromise library users’ right to seek information without the subject matter of their inquiries becoming known to others. Recently enacted state legislation prohibits abortion and imposes both criminal and legal penalties for performing illegal abortions or aiding and abetting the performance of an illegal abortion. The passage of this legislation and proposals to adopt similar legislation in other states has prompted concerns that provisions within those bills may be used to pursue criminal or civil charges against library workers for providing library users access to reproductive health information, including information about abortion. Some of these bills incentivize individuals to pursue civil action against individuals with the promise of financial gain. It is the professional responsibility of library workers to curate resources and provide assistance to library users seeking information without imposing their personal beliefs or engaging in viewpoint discrimination. They do so in compliance with state and federal laws and the U.S. Constitution, including those provisions that safeguard information access and patron privacy. Library workers do not provide medical or legal advice..”

The Private Suppression of Constitutional Rights

Huq, Aziz Z., The Private Suppression of Constitutional Rights (April 1, 2022). Texas Law Review, Forthcoming, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4072800 “On September 1. 2021, Texas’s abortion ban S.B.8 went into effect, not only prohibiting almost all abortions after six weeks but also allowing any private party to sue those who, knowingly or unwittingly, aid or… Continue Reading

What’s Happening With The Vinton Public Library

Iowa Starting Line – “Residents of a small Iowa town criticized their library’s LGBTQ staff and their displaying of LGBTQ-related books until most of the staff quit. Now, the town’s library is closed for the foreseeable future. After having the same library director for 32 years, the Vinton Public Library can’t seem to keep the… Continue Reading

The next book ban: States aim to limit titles students can search for

Washington Post: “Republican lawmakers across the country are proposing legislation that would target online library databases and library management technology — tools built by a half-dozen large companies that catalogue millions of books, journals and articles that students peruse for assignments. These bills — already enacted in Utah and Tennessee, on the verge of becoming… Continue Reading

12 Legitimate Uses for the Dark Web

MakeUseOf:  “The dark web has many legitimate and legal purposes, despite its sinister reputation. A mention of the dark web usually conjures up ominous and sinister imagery. While the dark web is certainly home to some questionable content, it also has a number of legitimate uses, from helping citizens circumvent government censorship, to adding an… Continue Reading

EveryLibrary launches the Banned Book Store

“EveryLibrary is excited to launch the Banned Book Store at bannedbookstore.co as the most comprehensive list of currently banned and challenged books in the United States.  Many of the book challenges come from individuals who have never read the books and who have been encouraged by national right wing organizations to present excerpts out of context… Continue Reading

LLRX April 2022 Issue

Articles and Columns for April 2022 Web Guide for the New Economy 2022 – Accurate and actionable data on the economy is critical to many aspects of our research and scholarship. This guide by research expert Marcus P. Zillman provides researchers with links to information on a range of sources focused on new economy data and… Continue Reading

In the dark – Censored Planet

Seven years, 60 countries, 935 internet shutdowns: How authoritarian regimes found an off switch for dissent: “…Russia is a pioneer in the use of these tools but not an outlier. The technologies it uses are proliferating, creeping into internet infrastructure all over the world, helped by multinational companies that have turned censorship into an off-the-shelf… Continue Reading

Book banning efforts are inspiring readers to form banned book clubs

CNN: “Book banning — or at least, book banning attempts — appears to be having a resurgence. The American Library Association recorded 729 challenges to library, school and university materials and services in 2021, the most since the organization began tracking those attempts in 2000. While that might seem low overall considering the approximately 99,000… Continue Reading

TikTok, Russia & the emerging Splinternet

Tracking Exposed: “On March 15, 2022, Tracking Exposed released a special report documenting our investigation into TikTok’s content restrictions in Russia, which was picked up by news outlets, such as The Wall Street Journal, The Financial Times, Vice News, Le Monde, and WIRED Italia. It also gained substantial traction on Twitter. Today we release a… Continue Reading