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Intellectual Freedom. LIB 311 March 29, 2011. Intellectual Freedom.

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intellectual freedom
Intellectual Freedom

LIB 311

March 29, 2011

intellectual freedom1
Intellectual Freedom

“The right of every individual to both seek and receive information from all points of view without restriction. It provides for free access to all expressions of ideas through which any and all sides of a question, cause or movement may be explored.”

Source: ALA office of Intellectual Freedom

library bill of rights
Library Bill of Rights

The American Library Association affirms that all libraries are forums for information and ideas, and that the following basic policies should guide their services.

I. Books and other library resources should be provided for the interest, information, and enlightenment of all people of the community the library serves. Materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background, or views of those contributing to their creation.

library bill of rights cont
Library Bill of rights cont.

II. Libraries should provide materials and information presenting all points of view on current and historical issues. Materials should not be proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval.

III. Libraries should challenge censorship in the fulfillment of their responsibility to provide information and enlightenment.

library bill of rights cont1
Library Bill of Rights cont.

VI. Libraries which make exhibit spaces and meeting rooms available to the public they serve should make such facilities available on an equitable basis, regardless of the beliefs or affiliations of individuals or groups requesting their use.

Adopted June 18, 1948, by the ALA Council; amended February 2, 1961; amended June 28, 1967; amended January 23, 1980; inclusion of “age” reaffirmed January 24, 1996.

banned books
Banned Books
  • Challenge= An attempt to remove or restrict access to materials based on the objections of a person or group.
  • Banning = Removal of materials

Material is most frequently challenged on the grounds that it is sexually explicit, violent, contains offensive language, makes references to homosexuality, is offensive to a religious group, and/or is unsuited to a particular age group.


Top 10 Challenged Books of 2009


1. TTYL; TTFN; L8R, G8R(series), by Lauren MyracleReasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit, and unsuited to age group

2. And Tango Makes Three, by Justin Richardson and Peter ParnellReasons: Anti-ethnic, anti-family, homosexuality, religious viewpoint, and unsuited to age group

3. The Perks of Being A Wallflower, by Stephen ChboskyReasons: Anti-family, drugs, homosexuality, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit, suicide, unsuited to age group 4. To Kill A Mockingbird, by Harper Lee Reasons: Offensive language, racism, unsuited to age group 5. Twilight (series) by Stephenie Meyer Reasons: Religious viewpoint, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group 6. Catcher in the Rye, by J.D. Salinger Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group 7. My Sister’s Keeper, by Jodi PicoultReasons: Homosexuality, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexism, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group, violence 8. The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big, Round Things, by Carolyn MacklerReasons: Ofensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group 9. The Color Purple, by Alice Walker Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group 10. The Chocolate War, by Robert Cormier Reasons: Nudity, offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group ______________________________________________________________________________________________

Source: ALA’s Frequently Challenged Books


Methamphetamine : its history, pharmacology, and treatment

Database:NMSU Library System

Main Author:Weisheit, Ralph A.

Title:Methamphetamine : its history, pharmacology, and treatment / Ralph Weisheit and William L. White.

Subject(s):Substance abuse.Methamphetamine.P

Publisher:Center City, Minn. : Hazelden, 2009.Description:x, 285 p. : ill. ; 23 cm.

Notes:Includes bibliographical references and index.

Does methamphetamine matter? -- Listening to meth : the lessons of history -- Physiological effects of meth -- Social effects of meth -- Cooking meth -- Methamphetamine in rural communities -- Treatment and recovery support resources for methamphetamine dependence.

Database:NMSU Library System

Location:Zuhl Library

Call Number:HV5801 .W383 2009 Copy 1

Number of Items:1Status:c.1 Charged - Due on 05-03-2011

we used to worry about banned books now we can worry about banned people as well andy thibault
“We used to worry about banned books. Now we can worry about banned people as well.”- Andy Thibault
the usa patriot act

The Uniting and Strengthening of America by Providing the Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001

the patriot act cont
The PATRIOT Act cont.
  • Passed on October 26, 2001, six weeks after the September 11th attacks.
  • Its goal is to aid law enforcement in gathering financial information and electronic communications of suspected terrorists.
patriot act cont
PATRIOT Act cont.

It amended more than 15 different statutes including those involving business, financial, and educational records, computer trespassers, wiretapping, money laundering and immigration.

the patriot act and libraries
The PATRIOT Act and Libraries

The PATRIOT Act does not specifically mention libraries but it increases the authority to law enforcement in terms of searches and seizures.

a request for information
A Request for Information
  • A request that can be denied.
  • An order for specific items that are to be made available within a set period of time.
  • This usually allows enough time to consult a lawyer to determine if the request is valid and reasonable.
  • An order for immediate search and seizure. Librarians should not argue with a warrant as they can be arrested for obstructing justice for refusing to turn over materials.
section 215
Section 215

Law enforcement has access to “any tangible thing” no matter who holds them. In libraries this can include:

  • Records of computer use
  • Patron records
  • Interlibrary loan records

Law enforcement doesn’t need to provide probable cause, only that the records relate to an ongoing terrorist investigation.

section 215 cont
Section 215 cont.
  • Includes a gag order prohibiting librarians from disclosing under penalty of law that the FBI requested any materials.
  • The gag order also includes not being able to contact the patron to let them know their file has been accessed.
section 505 national security letters
Section 505National Security Letters
  • Requires businesses i.e. internet service providers, phone companies, etc. to turn over phone records, financial records, credit reports, customer records relevant to terrorist investigations to the FBI without court approval.
  • Recipients cannot disclose that they received one or challenge it.
freedom of information act foia
Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)
  • Passed in 1966
  • Allows any person to request government records i.e. print documents, photographs, tape recordings, etc.
  • The decision to release records is based on the content and not the requester or the record’s intended use.
electronic freedom of information act e foia
Electronic Freedom of Information Act (E-FOIA)
  • Passed in 1996
  • Allows any person to request government information in electronic form.
clinton administration and foia
Clinton Administration and FOIA
  • In 1993 President Clinton and Attorney General Janet Reno created a new FOIA standard, “a presumption of disclosure”
  • The Clinton administration declassified and released over 800 million pages of government documents.
bush administration and foia
Bush Administration and FOIA
  • Bush reversed the Clinton/ Reno standard.
  • Attorney General Ashcroft created a new classification category “sensitive but unclassified information” broadening restrictions on access to information that wasn’t classified.
the obama administration and foia
The Obama Administration and FOIA
  • In a memo written on January 21, 2009, President Obama instructed all agencies and departments to "adopt a presumption in favor" of Freedom of Information Act requests.

NPR story- Freedom of Information Isn’t Just for Journalists

freedom of information vs national security
Freedom of Information Vs. National Security

Government agencies’ response to the events of September 11th:

  • Shut down agency Websites
  • Scrubbed Websites of sensitive information and/ or added password protection to access information.
  • Recalled and destroyed existing information from depository libraries.
watchdog groups
Watchdog Groups
  • OMB Watch (White house office of budget and management)
  • Open the Government
  • Coalition of Journalists for Open Government
  • EPIC (Electronic Privacy Information Center)
watchdog groups cont
Watchdog Groups cont.
  • These groups advocate for a full accounting of government information removed from the Internet.
  • OMB watch maintains a list of government websites that have removed information along with a detailed description of what has been taken down.
censorship vs national security
Censorship vs. National Security
  • There is no way to document or retrieve information never released to the public.
  • The public has a legal right to request information (FOIA/ E-FOIA)
the wayback machine internet archive
The Wayback Machine/ Internet Archive
  • A collection of public Web pages from 1996 to the present
  • Created to prevent the Internet from disappearing into the past
  • Makes it possible to find older versions of government documents that may have been removed from agency sites