not just filtering, but reporting too, ick!

Libraries that take federal money already have to have filters. Now the Allegheny Council [PA] is considering a bill to require libraries to report incidents involving “illegal” viewing of pornography on library computers. If libraries fail to report these incidents annually — ostensibly to help improve the filters — the county will not fund the consortium computer network. Thanks to state privacy laws, at least these reports can’t contain personally identifying information. Also included in the resolution are training sessions for librarians with the police and the DA on appropriate internet usage. A local librarian writes up her impressions.

Surely there’s some threshold where libraries can say, “We’ve got filters on the computers. We’re complying with all laws. We have library policies to address this. Get off our backs and let us do our jobs!” Instead, our representatives are meekly letting folks who don’t comprehend the situation sit in judgment.

Legislation for Librarians

Here’s another great acronym for all librarians to know SPY BLOCK (Software Principles Yielding Better Levels of Consumer Knowledge). It’s an anti-spyware bill which, like most legislation written by people who don’t truly understand technology — or who are willfully ignoring what they know about it — is overbroad. Susan Crawford explains more. [copyfight]