Supreme Court Lets Stand Computer Anti-Porn Law

Here\'s a Story from Yahoo! (and Another from Wired)The U.S. Supreme Court said that a free-speech challenge by six professors to a VA law that bars public employees from using state computers to access porn on the Internet.


The profs argued the law violated their 1st Amendment \"academic freedom rights\" and would stop legitimate, work-related, intellectual inquiries.


So do this include Lego Porn?

During Information Glut, Publish and Perish?

Washington Post has Story on all those free newspapers and directories you see all over the place. They are gaining in popularity, street boxes are piling up, and so are the stacks of newspapers in libraries, recreation centers and in local businesses.

People are starting to complain the things are just a waste of space and an eye sore.

Harry Potter Set to Make Millions for Charity

J.K. Rowling says she plans to publish two Harry Potter specials to bring in up to $33 million for deprived children. Suppliers, printers, distributors and booksellers are all waiving their profits, fees and payments on the books. Three dollars from each sale will go to Comic Relief.

``You should buy them because they will save lives,\'\'

Full Story.

Experts See Online Speech Case as Bellwether

The NY Times has a Story on Yahoo!\'s decision to drop the Nazi auctions. This could lead to other litigants and governments in other countries to go after U.S. service providers and auctions. Yahoo! had originally said they could not control access to thier site based on geography (which was the excuse they used to not stop the auctions), but now they say They Are Trying to Target ads based on where you are.

\"We are not going to acquiesce in the notion that foreign countries have unlimited jurisdiction to regulate the content of U.S.-based sites.\"

One dollar twenty-five cents

Don Saklad Sent in this
boston.com Story on a new ad campaign in Boston. Another Story on the same things says the campaign was developed after library officials held focus groups with area residents, who told them why they didn’t go to the library. This Story, from L.A., says all it takes is internet access to bring\'m in.


\'\'One of the big misconceptions at the library is that there will be a huge fine if they haven\'t returned a library book in years, like you\'ll need a second mortgage on your house,\'\' said library spokeswoman P.A. d\'Arbeloff. \'\'The maximum fine for any book is $1.25. The money is not what\'s important here. We want you in the library.\'\'

No Porn For You!!

Wired has this story on public employees in Virginia who are not allowed to access porn on their computers. Some professors say that it is against the law violates their first ammendment rights. I\'d love to see my old Psychology professors taking the dive into the world of pornography.\"The law, adopted in 1996, barred about 101,000 state employees, including faculty members, librarians and other researchers at state institutions, from using their state computers to access sites with sexually explicit content.

Sexually explicit is defined as any depiction or description of \"sexual excitement,\" \"sexual conduct,\" or \"a lewd exhibition of nudity.\"

Professors or other state employees must get written permission from their agency heads before accessing sexually explicit material.\" -- Read More

Library Advertisements

Here is an article from The Herald about the new advertisement campaign from the Boston Public Library.\"Clearly, this isn’t your father’s library, where pinched-faced old biddies stood guard over their literary charges -- or at least that’s what the Boston Public Library’s first ad campaign wants you to think.

\"This is a community that is used to seeing all kinds of crazy ads on TV and billboards,\" said library spokesman P.A. d’Arbeloff. \"Why not have some fun? When you realize the ads are for the library, it sort of surprises you, and that’s one of the desired effects. Hopefully that will help people remember the message.\" -- Read More

Ken Haycock Answers Your Questions

Ken Haycock was the second ALA Presidential Candidate to ring in with the answers to your questions. The questions are bolded, followed by the answers.


I was overwhelmed with the number of questions I received from librarians in the US and from around the world (the total was somewhere around 50). Normally I am lucky to get 10 responses to a call for submissions from people, so this seems to be an important topic for the LISNews audience. I chose what I felt were the best ones, omitted the duplicates (most popular were questions on pay and image), and ran them through a spell checker. What you see are the unedited questions I received, more or less in the order I received them.
I did move the very first question to the first position in this list, it struck me as being the simplest question, but yet the hardest question to answer. They were free to answer or ommitt any of the questions. I removed the names to protect the innocent, and did not number the questions.

Why should I continue to pay my dues and remain a
member of the ALA?
ALA serves well the continuing education needs of
members and support for defending issues of importance to
libraries and librarians. The programs, journals and collegiality
of ALA have always been beneficial to me from the time I joined
27 years ago. While I believe that ALA is an important, even
critical, association for our profession and institutions I
cannot answer this question for another. There is a plethora of
library associations while strength comes in numbers, focus and
resources. -- Read More

William Sannwald Answers Your Questions

William Sannwald was the first ALA Presidential Candidate to ring in with the answers to your questions. The questions are bolded, followed by the answers.


I was overwhelmed with the number of questions I received from librarians in the US and from around the world (the total was somewhere around 50). Normally I am lucky to get 10 responses to a call for submissions from people, so this seems to be an important topic for the LISNews audience. I chose what I felt were the best ones, omitted the duplicates (most popular were questions on pay and image), and ran them through a spell checker. What you see are the unedited questions I received, more or less in the order I received them.

I did move the very first question to the first position in this list, it struck me as being the simplest question, but yet the hardest question to answer.

They were free to answer or ommitt any of the questions. I removed the names to protect the innocent, and did not number the questions.

Why should I continue to pay my dues and remain a
member of the ALA?
Being a member of ALA makes one part of the collective
voice of libraries and librarians in the USA.  It also
enables members to have access to the programming and
publications of ALA, including American Libraries as well as
Divisional Journals and Newsletters.In addition, involvement in
the association creates a bond and allows for a lifetime of
friendship with other members.When I look back at my career, it
was involvement in ALA that was one of the things that helped me
develop my appreciation of and skill in the craft of
librarianship. -- Read More

Berners-Lee On The Web

SiliconValley.com has an Interview with Tim Berners-Lee on the past, present and future of the web. He worries the web may spin out of control.

``My worry is that we\'ll make a system that isn\'t conceptually clean enough . . . so that in 10 years time, we\'ll find the technology is limiting,\'\' he said.


He also says he wishes he didn\'t put the double slashes in URL\'s, they are a pain, aren\'t they?

Friday Updates

The friday updates for this week include censorship, free speech, circulation records, 19th Century library, farewell to a high school librarian. Enjoy! -- Read More

Changing roles for university libraries

InsideDenver has a nice Story on college libraries, and how well they are doing. They touch on Questia Media, and the internet\'s impact on libraries.


\"It\'s not providing the information. It\'s providing the service to help people find the right stuff,\"

Inconsistent Librarians?

In order for librarians to state their case on the matter of filtering, they need to see the other side of the controversy. This will make their argument stronger. Art Linkletter, in the Nando Times had this to say about filtering:\"Professional librarians go through years of schooling to acquire degrees in library science, and they are taught to discern worthy from unworthy material. Given limited resources to buy books, librarians routinely choose not to buy rubbish. Few, if any, libraries stock their shelves with unvarnished porn...The libraries\' argument is, to put it charitably, inconsistent. -- Read More

The Real Thing: Democracy as a Contact Sport

Here is an article by Russell Mokhiber and Robert Weissman, of Focus on the Corporation fame, about the recent donation of 20,000 Coke ads to the Library of Congress. They attended the reception at the Jefferson Building, questioned the use of a public library to promote junk food, were thrown out and told never to return. I guess it was their physical removal that prompted them to title the story The Real Thing: Democracy as a Contact Sport.


The Thomas Jefferson quote in the article is wonderfully ironic: \"I hope we shall crush in its birth the aristocracy of our monied corporations which dare already to challenge our government to a trial of strength, and bid defiance to the laws our country.\"

Creating Community Controlled Journals

SPARC and the Triangle Research Libraries Network (TRLN) today launch
DECLARING INDEPENDENCE: A GUIDE TO CREATING COMMUNITY-CONTROLLED
SCIENCE JOURNALS, a how-to handbook and web site that guides editors
and editorial board members of scientific journals toward responsible
journal publishing. To see the site or download a PDF version of the
handbook, please go to: arl.org/sparc/DI. -- Read More

UCITA a guide to understanding and action II

The ARL has posted a PDF version of UCITA a guide to understanding and action. It\'s a good place to learn more on this law, and how to handle it.


Be sure to check out \"Appendix A, Myths and Facts about UCITA\"!

Scholarship for library school students with disabilities

AccessLife is carrying a story about how Ellen Perlow convinced ASCLA to offer a library school scholarship for people with disabilities. At first, ALA turned her down.

\"This fact made Perlow realize that the program would have to be funded independently and not detract from the Spectrum scholarships for racially diverse library students. So she went out and got her first anonymous donation and, in a very short time, the program was set.\"

Search engines need to improve

ZD Net has an interesting Look At search engines. They say people get \"Web-rage\" after searching for 12 minutes, and not finding what you\'re looking for. They say all that information is just overwhelming.

\"A great majority, (86 percent) of Internet users feel that a more efficient way to search the Web for accurate information should be in place,\" Roper Starch Worldwide researchers wrote.\"


The other 14% must not actually use the internet.

Information Liberation

Information liberation : Challenging the corruptions of information power by Brian Martin is now online as an eText, Here, links to the chapters are below.I\'ve only read 2 chapters, but it looks interesting.

\"
Power tends to corrupt, and information power is no exception. Information Liberation analyses the corruptions of power in a range of crucial current areas in the information society, including mass media, intellectual property, surveillance, bureaucracies, defamation and research.

Reform solutions seldom get to the root of information problems. Information Liberation examines radical alternatives that undermine the power of vested interests. Alternatives include replacing mass media with network media, abolishing intellectual property, and changing social institutions that create a demand for surveillance. The book canvasses various strategies for moving toward these alternatives, focussing on grassroots action.

Information Liberation is provocative. Most readers will find something to disagree with. That\'s all part of the process. Everyone needs to be involved in discussing information policies and practices, rather than leaving the issues to experts and vested interests.\" -- Read More

Why Books Survive

The New Republic has a book review of Book Business: Publishing Past Present and Future by Jason Epstein that turns out to be much more than a review. The author of the review has more than a few things to say about books and the publishing industry.

\"The conviction that not only will people always want books, and will want them as they have always had them--on the shelves in bookstores--and will travel great distances to get to them, has led me to put upward of 300,000 books in four buildings in my hometown in West Texas.\"

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