GRC Report - July 2000

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As I write this toward the end of May, there are so many critically important information policy issues pending that they make my head swim: e.g., the controvery surrounding the use of filters to limit access to some materials on the Internet; database protection; threatened cuts to the Federal Depository Library Program; UCITA, which will take away many of the fair use rights that were assured before the Digital Age. The Government Relations Committee has been working on these and other issues, and during the year we have vastly expanded our grass roots network throughout the country. We coordinate efforts and keep you informed of developments, but it is your efforts that truly make the difference between our success and failure. Your Senators and Representative care about what you think. Each and every individual who responds to an alert by writing a letter, picking up the phone to call a congressional office, making a visit, or sending an email, becomes an essential link in our efforts to ensure that law librarians can continue to serve their clients and that primary legal materials will continue to be available to the public at large. Thanks to all of you who have helped us. To others who have not yet joined us, please take a moment to learn about the issues by signing on to the Advocacy Listserv (through the AALL Washington Affairs Office link or the AALL Online Discussion link) available at the Association's web site. Be sure to attend our Legislative and Regulatory Update program at the annual meeting on Monday, July 17, to hear Marybeth Peters, Register of Copyrights, speak about new legislation and initiatives that will affect fair use and other copyright issues. Plan to stop by our table in the Activities Area at the annual meeting and we'll fill you in on what we're doing and how you can help. Get involved - we need you!

Keith Ann Stiverson, GRC Chair