Adam Ash

Your daily entertainment scout. Whatever is happening out there, you'll find the best writing about it in here.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Here we go: the FBI wants your library records

From the NY Times. Read the full story here.

Using its expanded power under the antiterrorism law known as the USA Patriot Act, the F.B.I. is demanding library records from a Connecticut institution as part of an intelligence investigation, the ACLU said Thursday.

The demand is the first confirmed instance in which the Federal Bureau of Investigation has used the law in this way, federal officials and the A.C.L.U. said. The government's power to demand access to library borrowing records and other material showing reading habits has been the single most divisive issue in the debate over whether Congress should extend key elements of the act after this year.

Administration officials have repeatedly emphasized that they have no interest in investigating the reading habits of law-abiding Americans. But the administration has faced strong criticism from groups like the American Library Association, which released a survey of its members in June showing that law enforcement officials had contacted libraries at least 200 times since 2001 with formal and informal inquiries about their internal records.


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