ARCHIVED: Roger H. Parent's Informal Notes - 7/6/1998

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July 6, 1998

Universal Citation Guide

In consultation with the Committee on Citation Formats, the State Bar of Wisconsin has been selected to publish the Association’s Universal Citation Guides. The Committee endorsed the State Bar because of their publishing expertise, and their credibility in the appropriate marketplace, "…both in terms of their previous products, and more importantly, in terms of their experience with the substantive issue of universal citation."

In July, the State Bar of Wisconsin is scheduling to print and distribute the Universal Citation Guide prepared by the Committee on Citation Formats chaired by Marcia Koslov. AALL will sign a letter of agreement with the State Bar for printing and distributing the publication to a list of organizations and individuals selected by the Committee. The publication will be distributed to them free of charge. AALL will absorb all the related costs that will be covered by the special project funds approved by the Executive Board in February 1998.

After a reasonable comment period of approximately six months, the 1st official edition of the publication will be sold at a price that will cover all direct and indirect costs incurred by the State Bar of Wisconsin and the AALL. Pending the preparation of a detailed budget by the State Bar, no price has been set yet for the final publication. The State Bar will develop a budget that will cover editorial, printing, marketing and order fulfillment.

AALL, 80%, and the State Bar, 20%, will share net revenues, after all direct and indirect costs have been covered.

Prior to requesting the proposal from the State Bar, the Executive Director consulted with Matthew Bender & Co. who declined to bid on the project. In their view the proposed publication was not of sufficient magnitude to absorb all of their related overhead costs while at the same time keeping the price low enough to attract potential buyers.

President Judy Meadows, President-elect Jim Heller, Roger Parent, Marcia Koslov, and new Committee Chair Paul George will meet in Anaheim on Sunday, July 12th to discuss marketing, plans, media relations and the future involvement of the Committee. They have expressed their eagerness and willingness to participate in all future aspects of this significant project. They will serve as the primary contact persons for organizations wishing to comment on the Universal Citation Guides. They have offered to guide the plans for marketing and media relations in consultation with the State Bar and AALL.

International Federation of Library Associations, IFLA,
Boston 2001 Conference August 15-26, 2001

"Libraries: Making A Difference In The Knowledge Age"

AALL Appointments And Involvement Of Law Librarians

In 1996 the AALL Executive Board approved AALL’s co-sponsoring this international conference and invited Larry Wenger, University of Virginia Law Library, to represent AALL on the IFLA Boston 2001 Organizing Committee. He and Executive Director Roger Parent are AALL’s official and voting members on that Committee composed of two representatives, one appointed member and the chief staff officer, from each of the six U.S. library associations, who are the co-sponsors of the Boston conference. Roger also serves as the Committee’s Secretary. In 1998 President Judy Meadows and Treasurer Anne Grande reviewed and approved, on behalf of the Executive Board, the Letter of Agreement that defines the roles and responsibilities of the co-sponsoring U.S. associations.

Since 1996 the Organizing Committee has formed several additional working committees. Each of the six Association members, AALL, ALA, ALISE, ARL, MLA, SLA, of the Organizing Committee has now appointed one or more of their members to serve on these working committees. President Judy Meadows has appointed the following AALL members to serve three year terms on the IFLA working committees planning the Boston meeting. Diane Klaiber, New England Law Library Consortium, Local Planning; Karen Moss, U.S. Court of Appeals 1st Circuit Library, Publicity and Promotion; Larry Wenger, Fund Development; Edgar Bellafontaine, Social Law Library Boston, Technology; Bridget Reischer, Harvard Law School Library, Program. Additional AALL members are yet to be invited to serve on the Registration and Exhibits Committees. These two additional committees are now being formed.

On May 12, 1998 Roger spoke to more than 100 law librarians who attended the Association of Boston Law Librarians, ABLL, luncheon. He used this opportunity to inform them of this unique event and especially to solicit volunteers. Following the luncheon Roger also met with eight law librarians to discuss plans in more detail and to seek advice on promoting the event within the New England area. These law librarians suggested greater involvement by the Foreign, Comparative and International Law SIS, and additional communication with law librarians in the New England Chapter. Of course, Diane Klaiber will promote the conference within the New England Law Library Consortium. They also suggested a background article on IFLA in AALL Spectrum, ongoing press releases, a report at the Annual Business Meeting, a link from AALLNET to the IFLA website, and personalized letters to library directors.

U.S. Association Objectives In Participating In IFLA

Association In Participating In IFLA

AALL has been a long-standing member of IFLA founded in 1927. Its mission is "to promote international understanding, cooperation, discussion, and action in all fields of library activity". IFLA is composed of 1480 members from 140 countries; members include 150 library associations, 1070 public, special, governmental and academic libraries, and personal affiliates. Since 1971 IFLA has been headquartered in The Hague. Leo Voogt serves as its Secretary General (Executive Director). In 1997 Robert Wedgeworth, Library Director, Univ. of Illinois Champagne Urbana, completed his two terms as the elected President for six years.

AALL regularly sends a representative, customarily the Executive Director, to the annual IFLA conferences. All other U.S. library associations are also members. The representatives and members of these associations meet at least once at each IFLA conference. They generally caucus at the beginning of each conference to strategize on such matters as voting in elections held biennially, and promoting or supporting policies within IFLA. In addition, a few representatives of each association also meet twice during the year, once at the ALA Midwinter and again at the ALA Annual Conference.

Each association pursues goals that have been set by its own membership. AALL has not set its own specific objectives for participation in IFLA. In fact AALL’s international presence in IFLA is more limited than the other U.S. library associations and very few AALL members participate in IFLA. Instead AALL supports the common set of objectives shared by all U.S. associations. These objectives include providing international leadership and exploring the global implications of issues such as access to information, intellectual freedom and human rights, technical standards, library education, and public awareness of the value of libraries and librarians. In recent years IFLA has been at the forefront of international copyright and intellectual property rights. Recently IFLA formed a new committee on copyright to which Jim Heller has agreed to serve as a resource person from AALL. Frequently North American and Western European librarians provide exemplary leadership within IFLA by presenting programs and serving on panels, committees and task forces.

IFLA conferences are very well attended by 2000 or more attendees from countries around the world. The attendance and quality of the conferences have grown steadily in recent years due in part to a greater recognition of the importance of global communication and information sharing. ALA President Barbara Ford used this as the theme for her Presidency in 1997 – 1998.

Themes and Sub-themes

In 1997 the IFLA Executive Board, currently chaired by the President of IFLA, Christine Deschamps, Bibliotheque de L’University, Paris, France, approved the theme "Libraries: Making A Difference In The Knowledge Age".

Sub-themes that will shape program planning include:

The leadership role of librarians in the knowledge age;

Libraries making a difference in government and industry, society and cultural development, research and science, children’s education, and the quality of life for the public;

Managing technology and multi media;

Developing information policies;

Developing collaborative partnerships; and

Using technology to overcome space and time barriers to deliver global lifelong learning.

Freedom to Read Foundation and ALA Intellectual Freedom Committee

In the Winter 1998 FTRF Executive Director Judy Krug invited AALL to send a representative to the FTRF and the ALA IFC. AALL is the first outside organization to be invited to participate regularly at their meetings. In consultation with President Judy Krug, Executive Director Roger Parent agreed to serve as the AALL Representative to both organizations that hold some of their meetings in conjunction with the ALA Midwinter and Annual Conferences.

Both organizations are considering issues of interest to AALL and law librarians. At the 1998 Annual Conference the FTRF and the Intellectual Freedom Committee considered:

continuing attempts at the federal and state levels to legislate the Internet despite the Supreme Court’s 9-0 decision in June 1997 overturning the Communications Decency Act;

use of content filtering software in public and school libraries and the feeling among many librarians that ALA is not providing adequate guidance and leadership in helping them handle the growing concern among legislators, parents and the general public about the proliferation and easy access to pornography on the Internet.

privacy of information about users of the Internet.

Use of Filtering Software In Libraries

In June 1997 the ALA Council adopted the Resolution On The Use Of Filtering Software In Libraries that: "affirms that the use of filtering software by libraries to block constitutionally protected speech violates the Library Bill Of Rights". This Resolution affirms that First Amendment Principles protect communication over the Internet, and that this communication deserves the highest protection just like books, magazines, and newspapers. Many librarians are finding the ALA policy difficult to uphold in the face of criticism at the local level among library boards and user groups, particularly parent groups. Whereas many public groups want their libraries to install content filtering software, at least one Library Board in Loudon City, Virginia is being sued by a group of users for having installed content filtering software on public access terminals in the library. Some librarians are being forced to install content filtering software by their boards, school administrators, and municipal authorities.

Although some librarians are urging ALA to become more pragmatic and to soften its policy to allow filtering under some special circumstances, most librarians recognize that our profession’s stand on the First Amendment rights of all library users cannot be softened to accommodate challenges and criticism. This latter group needs a strong and unequivocal ALA policy to hold up as a standard for unfettered public access and to remind critics that many libraries are publicly supported and subject to the First Amendment that forbids them from restricting information based on viewpoint or content discrimination. Many librarians have also received support from their boards and other community leaders.

In the immediate future the ALA IFC will focus on educating librarians about the realities of content filtering; how it restricts access to constitutionally protected speech; and how it conflicts with freedom of access to information. Some of this educational effort might also be addressed to law librarians even though, as a group, they do not seem to face the same level of pressure on this issue.

According to a recent law-lib survey conducted by Betsy Mckenzie, filtering is also a concern among some law librarians who are experiencing many of the same problems faced by their colleagues in other libraries. In the summary of her survey, Mckenzie reported that law librarians are challenged by inappropriate uses of their terminals and printer, complaints about sexual harassment from patrons seeing pornographic images on computer screens or on printers. Most law librarians who responded to survey said they would never use filtering software, however one law library is using such software.

Generally librarians are feeling a need for policies and procedures to help them with this issue.

Executive Director, Roger Parent, has agreed to prepare an article for AALL Spectrum on this topic.

Treasurer’s Orientation Held at AALL Headquarters

Newly elected Treasurer Janis Johnston met with current Treasurer Anne Grande, President-elect 1998-1999 Margie Axtmann, and Executive Staff on June 17-18th for the Treasurer’s Orientation that is held every three years when there is a change in that Officer.

The day and a half session provided Anne Grande, Steve Ligda and Roger Parent with a chance to review with Janis Johnston and Margie Axtmann:

roles and responsibilities of the Treasurer, Finance & Budget Committee, and the Executive Board

AALL financial policies

Association investment and operating funds

annual audit procedures and reporting

budget preparation, approval, and monitoring

The event also provided participants with an opportunity to discuss issues of current importance to AALL, such as the funding for the Professional Development Program.