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List Readers:
 
Peg Allen raises a very important issue in her reply to
the ALAWON message re: the "indecency" clause of the
new Telecommunications Bill.
 
Two good examples of information access that may now
be endangered include access to information about
breast self-examination for cancer, and frank and honest
discussions about safer sex practices.  I have read
accounts that the very presence of the word "breast" on
a webpage could cause the page to be censored by
Internet Access Providers fearful of litigation.  BTW, this
includes libraries as providers, not just CompuServe,
AOL, etc.  More likely would be the potential for litigation
against providers who allow webpage acess to safer sex
instructional materials that use common parlance to
desribe STD risk reduction.  The fact that this information
may save lives seems sadly lost on ideologues and their
followers uninterested in a fair middle ground that
respects childrens' and parents' rights while still
recognizing the need to provide accurate and
appropriately targeted consumer health information.
 
If we think consumer access to health information is
important, then the MLA and its members must be
concerned about this and act proactively on behalf of all
health information consumers (children, adolescents and
adults) to protect access to contextually appropriate
resources.
 
Thanks!
 
Jerry Perry
 
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Gerald (Jerry) Perry               312.942.2280 (voice)
Reference Manager and              [log in to unmask]
Collection Development Specialist  "Life shrinks and
                                                expands
Library of Rush University         in proportion to one's
600 S. Paulina St.                 courage." - Anais Nin
Chicago, IL 60612
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