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Library records deleted to protect users

Posted by btoren@wvu-ad.wvu.edu.
February 22nd, 2005

Library records included in Patriot Act provisions; librarians respond with systematic purging

Civil liberties have become an issue of much debate and concern in recent years due to the passing of the USA Patriot Act in 2001. Library records are an important topic in that debate.

Section 215 of the USA Patriot Act reads, "The director for the FBI, or a designee of the director, may make an application for an order requiring the production of any tangible things (such as books, records, papers, documents and other items) for an investigation to protect against international terrorism or clandestine intelligence activities."

Frances O'Brien, dean of West Virginia University Libraries, said libraries should be a place where students can come and find information on any subject they want and not be questioned about it.

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WVU Libraries Answering Online Government Info Inquiries

Posted by btoren@wvu-ad.wvu.edu.
February 10th, 2005

WVU Libraries are among 31 institutions across the nation participating in a pilot program to provide virtual reference services to people seeking government information.

The Government Information Online service allows researchers to go online and ask questions or seek information about state and federal government. Patrons access the service through a link on the WVU Libraries webpage http://www.libraries.wvu.edu or directly at http://govtinfo.org. From this site, users can e-mail a question or engage in a real-time chat session with a librarian.

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