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									 Governments and the Internet:
A Threat to Intellectual Freedom?




  Presented by Judy Oberg and Sarah Chase-Kruszewski
                     March 20, 2006
Introduction
 Fact: 84% of people around the world
  choose the Internet as their first source of
  information. (OCLC 2005)
 Fact: 100% of Canadian public libraries
  offer access to the Internet. (CLA website)
 The Internet is an important source of
  information.
IFLA Internet Manifesto
  “. . . that unhindered access to information
  is essential to freedom, equality, global
  understanding and peace”
 “Freedom of access to information,
  regardless of medium and frontiers, is a
  central responsibility of the library and
  information profession”
Outline
 Core Documents and Legislation
 Global examples of Internet censorship by
  governments
 Surveillance Technology
 Things that You Can Do
Core Documents
and Legislation
Government surveillance and
censorship on the Internet
Privacy: A Difficult Concept to
Define and Legislate!
                      Privacy is often seen
                      as a basic human
                      right, but because no
                      one person interprets
                      this concept in exactly
                      the same way, it is
                      often difficult to define
                       and legislate.
Privacy: Not a new issue
   Hippocratic Oath –Circa 400 BCE

      “What I may see or hear in the course of the
    treatment or even outside of the treatment in regard to
    the life of men, which on no account one must spread
    abroad, I will keep to myself, holding such things
    shameful to be spoken about.”

   Ancient Jewish law the “Mishnah” – Circa 50 to 220
   The Qur’an – Circa 610
   The Bible – Circa 800
   Constitution of the Iroquois Nations - Circa 1500
Privacy: Not a new issue
(continued)
•United Nations “Universal Declaration of Human Rights” -1948

    Article 19
    “Everyone has the right to freedom of expression; this right
includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek,
receive and impart information and ideas through any media and
regardless of frontiers.”

•IFLA’s Internet Manifesto – 2002

IFLA’s mandate and consequently this Manifesto is drawn from Article
19 but asserts that it is the responsibility of libraries and informational
professionals to uphold these principles of intellectual freedom.
Privacy: Not a new issue
(continued)

   European Convention for the protection of
    Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms
    (Council of Europe) – 1950 - Article 8
   The Global Cybercrime Treaty (2001)
       a controversial international treaty intended to facilitate
        cross-border computer crime probes. US and Canada are
        two of the 38 nations which have signed onto the Council
        of Europe's 'Convention on Cybercrime'.
The North American Picture
   “Bill of Rights” US Constitution – 1791

    1st Amendment
    “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of
    religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the
    freedom of speech, or the press; or the right of people, peaceably
    to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of
    grievances.”

    4th Amendment
    “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses,
     papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures,
     shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable
     cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing
     the place to be searched and the persons or things to be seized.”
The North American Picture
Continued

    ALA’s Library Bill of Rights – 1939

    ALA – Privacy: An Interpretation of the Library Bill of
     Rights (2002)

    Article IV
    “Libraries should cooperate with all persons and groups concerned with
      resisting abridgement of free expression and free access to ideas”.


    Article V
    “A persons right to use a library should not be denied or abridged because of
     origin, age, background, or views”.
The North American Picture
(continued)

   ALA Code of Ethics (1995)
     “II. We uphold the principles of intellectual
    freedom and resist all efforts to censor library
    resources.
     III. We protect each library user’s right to privacy
    and confidentiality with respect to information
    sought or received and resources consulted,
    borrowed, acquired or transmitted.”
The North American Picture
(continued)

   ALA Policy on Confidentiality of Library Records
    – 1986


   ALA Policy Concerning Confidentiality of
    Personally Identifiable Information about Library
    Users (1991, 2004).


   ALA Resolutions on IF – 1) Aftermath of
    Terrorist Attacks & 2) Patriots Act
The USA Patriot Act (2001)

   Section 215 – of interest to libraries (2 sections)
    501 (a) (1) [The FBI] may make an application for an order requiring the
    production of any tangible things (including books, records, papers,
    documents and other items) for an investigation to protect against
    international terrorism or clandestine intelligence activities, provided that
    such investigation of a United States person is not conducted solely upon
    the basis of activities protected by the first amendment to the Constitution.

    501 (d) No person shall disclose to any other person (other than those
    persons necessary to produce the tangible things under this section) that
    the Federal Bureau of Investigation has sought or obtained tangible things
    under this section.
The Canadian Picture
 CLA   ‘s Statement on Intellectual
    Freedom
    Approved by Executive Council ~ June 27, 1974; Amended
    November 17, 1983; and November 18, 1985
   All persons in Canada have the fundamental right . . . to have
    access to all expressions of knowledge, creativity and intellectual
    activity . . .
   Libraries have a basic responsibility for the development and
    maintenance of intellectual freedom.
   It is the responsibility of libraries to guarantee and facilitate
    access to all expressions of knowledge and intellectual activity
    ...
The Canadian Picture
(continued)

   CLA’s Code of Ethics

   Annual General Meeting ~ June, 1976
    Members of the Canadian Library Association have the individual and
    collective responsibility to:

   support and implement the principles and practices embodied in the
    current Canadian Library Association Statement on Intellectual
    Freedom;


   facilitate access to any or all sources of information which may be of
    assistance to library users;


   protect the privacy and dignity of library users and staff.
The Canadian Picture
(continued)

     PIPEDA – Personal Information Protection and Electronic
      Documents Act

     Lawful Access proposals
     which would grant police and national security agencies unprecedented surveillance powers over
     Internet and cell phone communications.

      Provincial FOIP Acts
    Protects the privacy of individuals and their information.

     USA Patriot Act – Implications in Canada
    Section 215 forces libraries with a connection to the US to turn over library records (including
     internet use) and not to tell anyone.

    Many computer systems used in Canadian libraries are sold and maintained by US companies.
Global Concerns, Global Solution?

   What’s legal in one country is not in another
    (e.g. Yahoo and the French Gov’t)
   World Summit of the Information Society (WSIS)
   Internet Governance Project (IGP)
   Items for discussion …
Censorship
Censorship: Controlling the
Infrastructure
           To the Internet
       Censorship: Controlling the
           Infrastructure
   Governments can and do
    act as gatekeepers.
   They install filtering
    software on these “gates”
    to block out “offensive”
    material. e.g. Saudi
    Arabia, UAE
   Or, they cut off access
    entirely e.g. Nepal and
    North Korea
Censorship: Controlling the
Infrastructure
   Governments can limit your
    access to an ISP through
    restrictive policies as to who
    can get accounts
   The ISP can control, what
    portion of the Internet you can
    “see”.
   Examples: Cuba, Syria,
    Burma, UAE

     “. . . that unhindered access to
      information is essential to freedom,
       equality, global understanding and
                      peace”
            IFLA Internet Manifesto
       Censorship: Controlling the
             Infrastructure
   Government can also
    control the phone
    lines e.g. Cuba
   Or just ban outright
    the ownership of
    computers (Cuba,
    North Korea)
Censorship: Blocking sites
   This is by far the most common method used by non-
    democratic governments.
   Typical targets include: dissenting voices, human rights
    organizations, religious web sites (except the religion of
    the country), news sites, sites promoting the rights of
    women, gay & lesbian sites
   Belarus, Burma, China, Cuba, Iran, Libya, Maldives,
    Nepal, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Vietnam – to name a few.

“. . . access should neither be subject to any form of ideological, political or
                             religious censorship . . .”
                             IFLA Internet Manifesto
Censorship: Cost
 Make an ISP or e-mail account or computer too
  costly for the average citizen
 e.g. Cuba - $240 e-mail registration tax
  Average income in Cuba: $1700 (2003 figures)

    “. . . access should neither be subject to any form of ideological,
       political or religious censorship, nor to economic barriers . . .”
                            IFLA Internet Manifesto
Censorship: Limit access
 Only allow Internet access for a few hours
  a day (Cuba)
 Restrict the number of Internet-connected
  computers in the library- which in turn has
  limited opening hours (Cuba)

    “All information resources . . . should be readily, equally, and equitably
                            accessible to all library users”
             ALA Policy Manual 53.1.14 (Free Access to Information)
Censorship: Control the Search
Engines
 Force search engines to filter out search
  results – e.g. China and the Google case
 This prevents people from even knowing a
  site exists.

       “We uphold the principles of intellectual freedom and
         resist all efforts to censor library resources”

         ALA Policy Manual, 54.16 (Intellectual Freedom)
Censorship: Invasion of Privacy
   Require detailed personal information in order to
    obtain an account. This information is then
    forwarded to the government for approval. (e.g.
    Syria, Tunisia)
   Monitor all e-mail. (e.g. Cuba, Laos, China,
    Syria)
   Laotians must give government their e-mail
    password

    “No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, family,
                             home or correspondence…”
       Excerpt from Article 12, U.N. Universal Declaration of Human Rights
Censorship: “Democratic” examples

   To publish anything on your web site, you must first
    receive approval from either your ISP or
    government. (e.g. Spain, France)
   Filtering in the U.S. is required if libraries want
    access to e-rate funding.
   Removal of information deemed helpful to terrorists
   Political pressure to not accept certain customers


           “Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression;
         this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference
                              . . . regardless of frontiers.”

              Article 19, UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights
Censorship Summary
Non-democratic           Democratic
 Governments:             Governments:

   Economic barriers       Pre-approval of
   Use of filters           content
   E-mail monitoring       Link funding to
   Limit access             filtering (US)
   Suppress dissident      Removal of
    voices                   “sensitive” information
Surveillance
Surveillance

 Technology   being used to monitor
  Internet communications
 Done under the pretext of national
  and international security
 “… acts as a brake on user’s freedom
  of expression …” Stuart Hamilton, IFLA
 contributor

               First Amendment – US Constitution
Surveillance

 Corporations seizing the opportunity to
  provide the technology that will make us
  all “safer”
 By watching the Internet, terrorists can be
  found and stopped.
 Direct impact on library patrons who use
  the Internet inside the library.
Surveillance – Current Software

 Echelon
 “Secret” surveillance system that listens to
  communications, including the Internet
 Australia, Canada, New Zealand, UK and
  the US
Surveillance – Current Software

 Carnivore
 FBI program
 Monitors e-mail headers for keywords
 E-mails with keywords marked for further
  investigation
 No data available on how Carnivore is
  used
Surveillance - Data Mining
 Technique used by companies for years
 Examines customer information to
  establish behaviour patterns
 Target marketing material to appropriate
  market segment
Surveillance – Data Mining
 Total “Terrorism” Information Awareness
  (TIA)
 Combine electronic data – including library
  borrowing records - about all people and
  find patterns that identify terrorists
 Data from commercial, private, and
  government databases
Surveillance - TIA
   ISPs keep logs of all Internet traffic using their
    servers
   e.g. sites/pages requested, search terms used,
    IP addresses serviced, e-mails, referrer sites,
    errors generated
   TIA can use these logs to get information
   Any Internet user, including library patrons, are
    contributing to these logs each time they use the
    Internet

								
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