Archive for the 'First Amendment Rights' Category

Banned Books Week Book Report

Monday, November 8th, 2010

A few weeks ago, I wrote about my selected Banned Books Week reading, intending to report back here with the results. No, it hasn’t taken me *that long* to read all of the books, just that long to have a moment at the blog to summarize them. The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold: While this […]

Banned Books Week 2010

Tuesday, September 28th, 2010

Once again, it is Banned Books Week, one week I feel is most definitely worth noting. I dashed off to the library this evening (a bit literally, too, as I was on foot and in a hurry) to pick up: The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold Lois Duncan’s Killing Mr. Griffin Captain Underpants and the […]

China and the Future of the Internet with Rebecca MacKinnon

Tuesday, March 3rd, 2009

At today’s Berkman Center lunch, Rebecca MacKinnon is presently giving an excellent talk about the Internet in China and what’s been happening online in that country lately. While the government seems to be opening up a bit, things aren’t always what they might seem. Internet censorship is a small part of the picture. China employs […]

It’s Banned Books Week!

Tuesday, September 30th, 2008

It’s Banned Books Week. Had I not been reading Babbledog today, the week might have slipped past me unnoticed because I had forgotten to try to find out when it is. Sadly, my schedule this week won’t allow me to borrow any challenged books from the library. The one I’m presently reading, Middlesex by Jeffrey […]

Students Back on Track after MBTA Tries to Block Their Work

Wednesday, August 20th, 2008

“It was not until just this morning that the MBTA admitted what the students were doing isn’t a prank. If there’s ever been a shoot-the-messenger case, I guess this is it.” –Cindy Cohn, legal director for the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the organization representing the students. * * * “We’ve always maintained that there are certain […]

Pakistan Censoring YouTube Goes Wrong

Monday, March 3rd, 2008

Since I recently wrote about what the data unit at Renesys does, using the recent telecommunication cable breaks as an example, I wasn’t so sure about writing about it again with the news last week. In trying to censor the popular video Web site YouTube, Pakistan inadvertently blocked most of the traffic to the site […]

Free Speech & Liability

Monday, December 10th, 2007

I heard a piece on the BBC World Service this morning about a proposed law in Britain that would hold authors responsible if their works incite certain kinds of violence. As a writer, I got a little scared because of what might happen if the authorities held me responsible for the actions of my readers. […]

McCormick Tribune Freedom Museum Opens

Tuesday, April 11th, 2006

The McCormick Tribune Freedom Museum, supposedly the first museum dedicated to the First Amendment and freedom, opens this week in Chicago. The McCormick Tribune Foundation, which was established when Chicago Tribune editor and publisher Col. Robert McCormick died, supports the museum. Two Chicago Public Radio shows give us a, uh, listen to the museum: The […]

American Internet Companies and Censorship in China

Wednesday, March 1st, 2006

Berkman Fellow Rebecca MacKinnon has a piece in The Nation about actions the US government is taking about Internet censorship in China and the role of certain technology companies in that censorship and the handing over of data to Chinese authorities. What role should the United States have in encouraging free speech in other countries? […]

Get Your Name in a Book, Support the First Amendment Project

Wednesday, August 24th, 2005

Jessamyn reports on an interesting auction to support the First Amendment Project, a group focusing on protecting and promoting First Amendment rights. Bidders compete to have a name of their choice included in a forthcoming book by several well-known authors. (Wow. I haven’t posted to this category in /months/!)

New Department: First Amendment Rights

Monday, January 24th, 2005

Several times, I’ve wanted to start a category for items about free speech and the First Amendment. There’s one now. It includes items about Banned Books Week and challenged library materials, too. Addendum 3/15: There is going to be some overlap with the Reading department. I’ll try to put items emphasizing the freedom to read […]

Comic Book Legal Defense Fund

Monday, January 24th, 2005

When I was at a comic book store this weekend my awesome penpal highly recommends, I noticed a collection jar on the counter for the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund: Defending the Comic Industry’s First Amendment Rights Since 1986. Based in Northampton, Massachusetts, the nonprofit grew out of donations collected in 1986 to defend someone […]

Banned Books Week and the USA Patriot Act

Tuesday, October 5th, 2004

LIS News pointed to this item discussing Banned Books Week and the USA Patriot Act. Blake highlights some nice quotes from the article. My favorite is: “Somewhere these books have been banned from a library, but not here,” said Driftwood library director Sue Jenkins. “All of them are available to check out.” I still have […]

Happy Banned Books Week!

Saturday, September 25th, 2004

Banned Books Week begins today. It gives us the opportunity to reflect on our freedom to read. After I get off work today, I plan to visit my local library to check out some of the banned and challenged books on the lists I pointed to last week. I think I might have some time […]

Banned Books Week, Sept. 25 – Oct. 2

Saturday, September 18th, 2004

Banned Books Week is one of my favorite library-related celebrations. I’ve probably said this a hundred times in this space, but one of the big reasons I became a librarian is to support intellectual freedom. Some people think it’s a appropriate to prevent others from reading materials they find objectionable. Perhaps they never think that […]

Alice Series Tops ALA’s List of Most Challenged Books in 2003

Wednesday, February 18th, 2004

Harry Potter has been unseated as the most challenged book this year, ending a four-year reign of J.K. Rowling’s series. Instead, Phyllis Reynolds Naylor’s Alice series takes the lead in 2003, according to the American Library Association. The press release includes the ten most challenged books of the year and some complaints associated with the […]

Grandiose Plans Gone Awry Again

Saturday, September 27th, 2003

I had these elaborate dreams of posting something about banned books every day during Banned Books Week. And, well, the week ends Saturday and I haven’t been able to do it. I got swamped at work last week and will still be digging out week after next, so my plans to post something during lunch […]

Why Banned Books Week?

Tuesday, September 23rd, 2003

When I woke up this morning, I pondered why this week is still called Banned Books Week. Surely by now, someone has challenged or tried to ban a CD or movie or other non-book object in a library. Think about all the discussions of Internet filtering. I suppose I went off on this tangent while […]

Lots of Supreme Court Action Today

Monday, June 23rd, 2003

The Supreme Court ruled on affirmative action in a much anticipated ruling. They upheld the University of Michigan Law School’s admissions policy that considers race as a factor, but didn’t accept the University of Michigan’s policies for undergraduate admissions. In a ruling that many librarians will find disappointing, myself included, the court voted 6 to […]