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CBLDF Meets The Library World At The ALA Annual!

This weekend, CBLDF President Larry Marder and Executive Director Charles Brownstein will be in Anaheim, California for the American Library Association’s Annual Conference. The Fund will be set up on the Exhibit Hall floor handing out information about our work all weekend in Booth 786 in the Graphic Novel Pavilion! Come visit our table to learn about how you can can get involved with this year’s Banned Books Week, and take a look at our vast array of thank you items for supporting our work.

In addition to giving away great gifts to our contributors, we’re hosting a raffle where we’re going to give away Neil Gaiman’s signed badge from the 2009 Annual Conference, where he received the prestigious Newbery Medal for The Graveyard Book!

On top of our space in the Graphic Novel Pavilion, the CBLDF will also be hosting a special presentation on the Graphic Novel stage on Monday morning at 10:00 AM about how graphic novel censorship happens in libraries and what the CBLDF does to help.

The CBLDF’s recent letter in defense of Alan Moore’s Neonomicon emphasizes that challenges to take graphic novels off of library shelves are still happening, and the Fund is committed to assisting whenever the medium is under attack. Come support our work to protect them, and join the dialogue about what we all can do to protect comics and the First Amendment at the CBLDF booth at the ALA Annual!

CBLDF Teams with NCAC and ABFFE in Defense of Alan Moore’s NEONOMICON

Today, CBLDF joined forces with the National Coalition Against Censorship and the American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression to write a letter in defense of Alan Moore’s Neocomicon (Avatar Press), which has recently been challenged in the Greenville, South Carolina, public library system. Objections to Neonomicon were raised by a patron after her teenage daughter checked out the book, which contains adult themes. The book was correctly shelved in the adult section of the library, and the teenager possessed a library card that allowed access to the adult section.

Click through for the full text of the letter CBLDF, NCAC, and ABFFE sent to the Library Board of Trustees at the Greenville County Public Library.

Please help support CBLDF’s important First Amendment work and defense against library challenges such as this by making a donation or becoming a member of the CBLDF!

CBLDF Heads to the Mile High City This Weekend!

CBLDF Deputy Director Alex Cox is headed to Denver, Colorado, this weekend for the Denver Comic Con, a literary conference and convention at the Colorado Convention Center. He’s excited to see the myriad of Free Speech supporters that populate the Rocky Mountain State and its neighbors. He’ll have an array of signed graphic novels at booth 420, ready to go home with any fan of comics and Free Speech. Click through for more details!

ACLU Ensures Access to LGBT Web Content in Schools

As a recent article from CBLDF blogger Justin Brown reveals, draconian library filtering practices can restrict access to legitimate educational information. CBLDF has reported about and signed on against laws that would restrict Internet speech, often partnering with the ACLU in such cases. Reference librarian and CBLDF blogger Maren Williams describes how the ACLU has helped keep web-based information about LGBT issues available in school libraries after the jump.

Access Denied: Library Filter Fail

While researching a story about role-playing-game censorship for CBLDF.org at his local library, CBLDF blog volunteer Justin Brown encountered the cold slap of censorship himself as the result of aggressive filtering software. Brown discusses his experience, and the heritage of filtering laws that requires libraries like his to deny access to content or risk losing public funding after the jump.

Critical Fail: The Censorship of RPGs

by Justin Brown

Let’s say you’ve been reading up on the CBLDF coverage of the top 10 banned books of 2011, which included a graphic novel in the #2 spot, and you want to vent your frustrations by gathering with a group of friends to play a trending role-playing-game. You amble amongst local comic shops, book stores and libraries to obtain the newest player manual only to discover that it has been banned or censored to the point of being unplayable. (I mean, who wants to try to bewilder a bug-bear with a rubber-mallet-of-kindness? Ok, that scenario is a little farfetched, but you get the picture.) According to a recent article on ICv2, censorship has branched out to include RPGs for many of the same reasons that comic books have been challenged and censored.

More on RPG censorship after the jump.

THE GUARDIAN Analyzes Tintin in the Congo Case

In February, Belgian courts ruled that Tintin in the Congo should not be removed from bookstore shelves over charges that it violated Belgian laws regarding racism and inciting racial hatred. The court ruled that the book, which was serialized from 1930 to 1931 and collected in 1946 with significant revisions, was a product of its time and did not intend to incite racial hatred. This week, The Guardian reposted an analysis that Jogchum Vrielink wrote about the case and its impact on the sale of the book.

Click through for excerpts from the analysis.

Tucson School District Blocks Renowned Chicana Author’s Visit

Since ending the acclaimed Mexican American Studies program, the Tucson Independent School District has done little to ameliorate the outcry about censorship that has arisen in response. TUSD’s latest move is unlikely to help them win any friends: the school district recently rejected an offer to read from award-winning author Ana Castillo. Castillo offered to read at schools throughout Tucson free of charge and to pay for her own travel in an effort to help the community heal from the rift that resulted from the school board’s decision to end the MAS program and remove books from classrooms.

More details after the jump…

CBLDF’s History of Comics Censorship Presentation, Annotated by Joe Sergi’s Cup of Geek

PictureJoe Sergi, blogger for Cup of Geek went to the CBLDF presentation The History (And Future) of Comics Censorship at C2E2 last weekend and wrote an extensive recap of the panel, with additional research and annotations by the author. CBLDF is pleased to represent Sergi’s post in full as a resource for our members and supporters. Read Sergi’s post after the jump.