Not surprsingly, the best resources on Internet censorship issues are available on-line. There are any number of good sites to get you started and most have links to other sites. While these resources focus on issues of censorship and filtering software, there will also be links to other Internet issues of interest to schools, such as teaching children about safety issues on the net, or appropriate use policies.
Two good sites to start out are the web pages of the American Civil Liberties Union and People for the American Way Foundation web pages; both deal not only with censorship on the Internet but censorship and civil liberties issues in general.
American Civil Liberites Union. www.aclu.org. Be sure to check out its Cyber-Liberties pages on the site. The ACLU has also published a valuable report, Fahrenheit 451.2: Is Cyberspace Burning? The report is a comprehensive look at another proposal with worrisome implications for censorship — a ratings system of web pages.
People for the American Way Foundation. www.pfaw.org. Like the ACLU, PFAW has played a leading role in legal challenges to censorship on the net. Check out its pages on Free Expression, in particular, information on its lawsuit against filtering software in the public library in Loudon, VA.
Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility. Has an especially good page on Frequently Asked Questions about filters. www.cpsr.org/filters/faq.html.
Electronic Frontier Foundation. www.eff.org. This non-profit group working to protect privacy, free expression, and democracy online has an extensiv site with extensive links. Ironically, its censorship archive was blocked by CyberPatrol.
Electronic Privacy Information Center. www.epic.org. A public interest research center in Washington, D.C. established in 1994, EPIC is a project of the Fund for Constitutional Government. Its report on family friendly search engines is at: http://www.epic.org/reports/filter-report.html .
The Ethical Spectacle. www.spectacle.org. An on-line magazine founded by Jonathan Wallace, co-author of Sex, Laws, and Cyberspace — of which The New York Times said, “Required reading for anyone interested in free speech in modern society.” (New York, Henry Hold & Co: 1997). The site also hosts The Censorware Project.
Internet Free Express Alliance. www.ifea.net. Resources page is especially good. Members include ACLU, American Society of Newspaper Editors, Feminists for Free Expresion, National Coalition Against Censorship, National Association of Artists Organizations, and the Society of Professional Journalists.
The MIT Student Association for Freedom of Expression (SAFE) Home Page. http://www.mit.edu/activities/safe . This page has lots of good information and links on filtering software. One stop here and you’ll easily be on your way to any number of other good sites.
Peacefire: Youth Alliance Against Internet Censorship. www.peacefire.org. A dynamite site for anyone interested in filtering software and/or youth organizing.
U.S. Supreme Court majority opinion on the Communications Decency Act. http://supct.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/96-511.ZO.html or http://www2.epic.org/cda/cda_decision.html#majority.