San Jose Debates Internet Filters

April 22, 2009

The San Jose City Council Tuesday night voted down a proposal to install filters on public library computers to block access to pornography, The San Jose Mercury News reported. Because the city and San Jose State University jointly run the main public library branch, the issue has concerned the university, where many professors and others believe that filters would violate academic freedom and block material (in many cases non-pornographic, but sexually explicit) used for scholarship. Prior to the City Council meeting, the president of the university, Jon Whitmore, sent a letter to council members in which he said: "Internet filters will violate the spirit of our joint operating agreement by restricting intellectual freedom. Compromising this core value will seriously erode the spirit of cooperation and mutual understanding underlying the city-university partnership."

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