Censorship

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?

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.\"

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

Vietnam Burns Books

Lee Hadden Writes:

\"The Associated Press has an article today about the Vietnamese
Cultural Inspectors, who have recently burned over six tons of books,
newspapers and other publications that were deemed \"poisonous cultural
items\"and thus unsuitable for reading by citizens of Vietnam. According to
another story about this today from Public Radio, International, among the
\"superstitious\" items burned were religious books and newspapers from
abroad, including Bibles and Catholic publications.\"

Gay Books Outed

The LA Times has a Story on some books in CA. They say officials pulled 10 biographies of gay people from the shelves of a junior high campus. The ACLU cries censorship, while the school officials that pulled the books say the books reading level was too high for Orangeview students, and that the books presented a safety hazard because students who checked them out might be harassed by other students. How\'s that for a nifty excuse?The books are part of a series called \"Lives of Notable Gay Men and Lesbians\".

\"We all know why these books have been banned,\" Matthews said. \"The books were banned because they had a positive statement to make to kids about gay and lesbian people. The books were banned because of deep-seated prejudice.\"

Supreme Court sides with gay bookstore

Cabot writes \" CBC has a Story
on how
The Supreme Court has ruled in favour of a small Vancouver bookstore, ending its longstanding battle over Canada Customs\' power to seize material it considered obscene. \"


Since 1984, Canada Customs had confiscated 262 items destined for the Little Sister\'s Book and Art Emporium, because officers said the material was obscene.

Library Censors Pro-Life Book

There is no date on This article at ProLifeInfo but at some point in the past the Toledo-Lucas County Public Library rejected the book \"Killer Angel\" on the grounds it is \"Too Political\". They say the ALA stood behind this decision.

\"When told of the ALA\'s stand on the controversy, Grant responded, \"Their position is simply Orwellian. In the name of intellectual freedom, they man the barricades anytime someone suggests the removal of child pornography from a library, but if anything conflicts with their political agenda, then censorship imposed by the library hierarchy is completely acceptable. They\'re encouraging libraries to set up their own Politburo to test books for political correctness.\"

Who Decides What Books to Ban

Who has the final word about challenged books in your library? The director? The Board of Trustees? This article from the Star Banner is about a library advisory board (made up of private citizens) that, through appeal, can be the final arbiter on any questionable book.\"The unanimous decision to change library policy came after four hours of rancorous public comment in front of hundreds of people packing the commission auditorium. Most of them spoke about \"It\'s Perfectly Normal,\" a sex education book by Robie H. Harris, which some have characterized as pornographic and want permanently removed from the library shelves.\" -- Read More

Textbook case of self-censorship

Lois Aleta Fundis sent in This almost funny story from Freedomforum.org on some silly censorship down in TX. The State Board of Education approved a reading textbook for 5th that was \"revised\" after two Republican state legislators complained about a picture of Vice President Al Gore and a brief accompanying article.

\"\"The bottom line is the publisher self-censored this book under implicit threat that the far-right contingent on the State Board of Education would grandstand and bully [the publisher], because that\'s been their behavior for the last six years,\" Smoot told The Freedom Forum Online. \"These members of the state board have a long and rich tradition of going after textbooks for such absurd things as disliking a photograph of a woman carrying a briefcase, decrying the number of pages devoted to (farmworker organizer) Cesar Chavez and even saying one history book depicted slavery in too negative a fashion.\"

No More Banned Books

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has this piece on a school board that decided not to ban 5 books from an advanced placement english class...if the students are provided alternatives.\"Dr. James Moore and his wife, Minnie, the parents of a former Windsor Forest High School student who now attends college, challenged the books because they contain sex, violence and profanity.\" -- Read More

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