Pro-filter group will pay $1,250 to keep oversized signs

What would a day be without a report from Holland, MI?

A mistake on the size of more than 100 campaign signs that promote Internet filters will cost a Holland group up to $1,250.

The signs, which measure about 11 square feet, went up in yards Saturday, but organizers of the pro-filter campaign were notified Tuesday they exceeded the residential district size limit of 6 square feet.

City officials gave the group two options: remove the signs or pay a $25-per-sign permit fee to temporarily override the city\'s sign ordinance.
Diane Van DerWerff, treasurer of Holland Area Citizens Voting YES! to Protect Our Children committee, said her group intends to keep the signs and pay the fee.

\"I feel so silly,\" Van DerWerff said. \"This was just one of those things.\"


Censorware and Memetic Warfare

Slashdot has an outstanding report on filtering, and how it works. This is a great read whatever your views on filtering are, read it HERE.
Be sure to check out the link to This Report on sites blocked at the University of UT.

Most measures of blocking software effectiveness focus on how much pornography it blocks. We weren\'t able to test that because we couldn\'t look through the 99.4% of unblocked material - over 53 million URLs. Just too much data. But we did learn that, in Utah, 5% of the time, when the software said \"you can\'t look at that,\" it was just plain wrong.

Ninety-five percent accuracy might sound like a nice high figure to base a good meme around. Who could argue with a number like 95%? But consider what this means for the 300 Web sites in question: each of them was blocked from being read by a great many public institutions in the state of Utah.


Librarians debate Internet filters

A Story from Iowa, on the debate over filtering.

Iowa\'s public librarians say their budgets should not be tied to putting safeguards on Internet sites.

An effort by the Marshall County Board of Supervisors to deny extra money to local libraries that do not install filters on Internet service has triggered a debate over free speech and local control.
The suggestion died last week because of a tight county budget, officials said.
One librarian says the idea sets \"a really dangerous precedent.\"


Libraries try to keep Internet access safe

A story from Oklahoma on filtering policies in public libraries.

The policies in libraries ranging in size from New York City to Hominy have a common theme -- read at your own risk.

\"Ultimately, everyone has to take individual responsibility,\" said Jon Walker, division director for automation and collection services for the Tulsa City- County Library.

\"When you look at all the media including television and print, you have bad things in all those arenas. We have to teach people the skills to be able to discern what is accurate and important.\"

The Oklahoma Library Association and the Oklahoma Department of Libraries support and encourage libraries to develop an Internet policy but do not make recommendations for content.

Local library boards have the final decision about what is passed and enforced in their communities.


Activist leading fight to install Internet filters

A Story on the man leading the fight for filtering in Michigan appeared on Michigin Live

Gary Glenn has never left people lukewarm.

Through 20-plus years of political activism -- fighting organized labor, battling gay rights, looking to expand educational choice and now championing Internet filters in Holland -- the soft-spoken Southerner has inspired two reactions: devotion and derision.


Editorial on Filtering in IL

Someone writes \"Here is the full
editorial from The Times Newspaper covering Lansing,
Illinois. The link I sent earlier in the week doesn\'t work
because the paper moves the stories to an archive. The
story appeared in the Times at http://www.thetimesonli

Publication date: 02/10/2000
Bring in Internet but take out trash
A Personal View

Kathy Valente
Founder, Citizens for Community Values,
This is in response to the Lansing Library director\'s Jan. 4
letter regarding the library\'s decision to have one
unfiltered terminal. The federal court case that William D.
Babcock refers to that could threaten our community
standards, took place in Loudoun County, Va., in the Fourth
U.S. District Court, which has no jurisdiction in Illinois
whatsoever. Judge Leona Brinkema, a former librarian,
ruled it was unconstitutional for the library to filter
adult terminals. Babcock may not be aware that a parallel
decision of hers was overturned by a higher court, thereby
allowing government employees to be restricted from viewing
sexually explicit material on government-owned
(taxpayer-purchased) computers. Legal experts believe the
Loudoun case would\'ve been overturned had they appealed. But
more importantly, this 4th District ruling doesn\'t apply to
The group that filed the suit against the Loudoun County
Library was started by the American Library Association
(which oppose all filters), represented by the ACLU and
received a monetary award from the Playboy Foundation.
Do the ALA and ACLU have an agenda? Click Read
more to Read the rest


Internet restriction vote set for Tuesday

Lansing officials eye all public bodies in censorship

After a half-hour of debate among residents and trustees,
the Lansing Village Board agreed by consent last week to
prepare a resolution urging restricted access to the
Internet in public facilities.

The debate centered around access to the Internet at the
Lansing Public Library, but trustees agreed to direct their
resolution toward all public bodies in the village that
might provide such access.
The board is expected to vote on the resolution Tuesday.
Proponents of restricted access argue that self-imposed
\"filters\" will prevent users from accessing pornography and
obscene materials on the Internet.
\"Let\'s not play Big Brother so much with the Library Board,\"
Podgorski said. \"We should make it applicable to all.\"


A closer look at filtering

Someone wrote in with this interesting opinion

\"In today\'s local paper we are unfortunately headline news. You can find the story HERE If you click on news there are additional stories. The one concerning us is entitled \"Lansing trustees want library computers filtered\". If it full of misinformation. The Mayor has NEVER been in the library recently. He never even picked up the telephone to ask questions. We have NEVER had an unfiltered terminal so we certainly never moved it. We only have 6 terminals not 10.

In yesterday\'s paper, same URL, there is a guest editorial from {Someone}, a local resident, who is heading the campaign against the library. Her editorial is entitled \"Bring the Internet to the public library, but take out the trash first\". You may want to note her shopping list of sites OTHER than pornography that she wants to censor.

SHE is the reason it has taken so long to bring the internet to our library. SHE is the one who promised legal action if she ever walking in and found unfiltered internet access at the library. \"


Proposal attacks Internet porn in libraries

The Story on how Michigan will encourage some kind of filtering in libraries.Though, it does not force filtering on the libraries.

Librarians at thousands of school and public libraries in Michigan would have to use Internet filters to keep minors away from porn sites, under a bill headed for a vote in the state Senate.

The bill by Sen. Mike Rogers, R-Brighton, was unanimously approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee Wednesday. It requires libraries with Internet access to prevent those under 18 from viewing \"obscene matter or sexually explicit matter that is harmful to minors.\"


Why filtering is Unconstitutional


The current filtering debate reminded me of the CDA debate from a few years ago, so I thought I would let the supreme court speak for me. The following paragraphs are taken from the Supreme Court Ruling on the CDA. While they did not rule on filtering perse, the text of the decision may apply to filtering. States that force libraries into filtering may find these laws ruled unconstitutional.


We find this argument singularly unpersuasive. The dramatic expansion of this new marketplace of ideas contradicts the factual basis of this contention. The record demonstrates that the growth of the Internet has been and continues to be phenomenal. As a matter of constitutional tradition, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, we presume that governmental regulation of the content of speech is more likely to interfere with the free exchange of ideas than to encourage it. The interest in encouraging freedom of expression in a democratic society outweighs any theoretical but unproven benefit of censorship.

Read on to make your own decision...



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