us with problems you have encountered at your school. We hope
to post some of these on this website
This website does not include
issues related to student press freedoms, which are covered extensively
by the Student Press Law Center
A non-punitive computer use policy (at Mansfield [PA] University)
A mediation-centered policy regarding
controversial student artwork
(from Penn State University)
Justice on Campus: dedicated to "preserv[ing] free expression and due process rights at universities." "Archive includes reports on disciplinary charges, speech codes, and censorship on college campuses around the country."
Other Voices: wonderful array of freedom of expression issues, created as part of a course in First Amendment issues at Northwestern University.
Peacefire: "an anti net censorship website for teenagers."
MIT Student Association for Freedom of Expression (SAFE): many resources, including a section on “censor bait”: what authorities do not want you to see related to indecency, drugs, music, etc.
Top Ten Threats to Academic Freedom”: although this site dates from 1995, there is excellent material on Censorship in Cyberspace, Codes of Conduct, Censoring the Student Press,Alumni Demands vs. Academic Freedom, and Censorship of Faculty.
The Princeton University Center for Arts and Cultural Policy Studies (studying "community conflict over the arts")
Banned Music in the United States (listen to samples)
Rock Out Censorship: "a grass roots anti-censorship organization . . . not happy about having our First Amendment rights trampled, ignored, desecrated, and pissed on by spineless politicians that have sold out this country to corporate interests, religious zealots . . . and the so-called liberal sentries of political correctness in which nobody can dare utter a single word that might be construed as something that might offend someone."
Penn State, 1996-98: STUDENT SCULPTURE AND QUILT ORDERED REMOVED (see The AAUP guidelines describing how responsibly to protest against a speaker expressing a viewpoint from which a student dissents). MORE
Univ. Of South Florida, 2000: ART STUDENT ATTEMPTS TO PERFORM NUDE AT CAMPUS ART GALLERY. MORE
Brown Univ., 1997: FEMINISTS RESPOND TO "SEXIST" POSTERS WITH PARODIES ADVERTISING "GRAB AND FEEL YOU UP PARTY." MORE
University of Oklahoma, 1998-99: GRAFFITI, POSTERS, AND DISTRIBUTING LITERATURE: "FIGHT MULTI-CULTURALISM," "READ A DIRTY BOOK.” MORE
Northwestern Univ., Jan 2000: A WHITE SUPREMACIST ATTEMPTS TO SET UP A STUDENT CHAPTER OF HIS “HATE GROUP” AND APPEARS ON CAMPUS TO DISTRIBUTE PAMPHLETS. MORE
Villanova University, 2000: OFFICIALS CONFISCATE PRO-LIFE PUBLICATION. MORE
Bates College, 1997: ADMINISTRATION REMOVES GRAFFITI PROMOTING CAMPUS GAY RIGHTS. MORE
Univ. of Massachusetts, 1990-98: UNIVERSITY REPRIMANDED FOR NOT ALLOWING SPACE FOR A PUBLIC MEETING TO PROTEST A VISIT TO CAMPUS BY THE BISHOP OF BOSTON. MORE
San Diego State Univ, 2000: EXOTIC DANCERS NIXED AT THE SPRING FIESTA MORE
S.U.N.Y. Binghamton, 2000: STUDENT GOVERNMENT REQUEST FOR THE STUDENT UNION RENTAL OUTLET TO STOCK X-RATED FILMS REJECTED. MORE
Princeton Univ., 1999: "NUDE OLYMPICS" BANNED BY TRUSTEES. MORE
Univ. of Pennsylvania, 2000: WAS A READING FROM NOVEL ABOUT STUDENT SUICIDES CONSIDERED TOO "CONTROVERSIAL"? MORE
Harding Univ., 2000: APPEARANCE OF AUTHOR OF SUMMER OF MY GERMAN SOLDIER RESCINDED MORE
Stanford Univ, Nov. 1997: INVITATION TO BLACK MUSLIM SPEAKER WITHDRAWN: A FREE SPEECH OR FINANCIAL ISSUE? DID STANFORD ALLOW THE INSURANCE CARRIER TO DETERMINE THE KIND OF SPEAKER THE UNIVERSITY WOULD ALLOW TO APPEAR? MORE
Columbia University, 2000: JOHN
McCAIN'S APPEARANCE QUESTIONED: A FREE
SPEECH OR LEGAL ISSUE (FOR A NON-PROFIT INSTITUTION)?
Suffolk County Community College, 2000: NOTORIOUS DOMESTIC VIOLENCE VICTIM, CALLED POOR ROLE MODEL, PRESSURED TO CANCEL APPEARANCE. MORE
Hutchins (1899-1977), famous President of the University of Chicago, was
in retirement when, in 1959, a university publication came under attack
from clergy and the media for publishing writing by William Burroughs,
Jack Kerouc and other "Beat" poets. The current President of the university
buckled under to the attackers, cutting the publication's budget. Hutchins'
opinion was that it is a university's job to try to convince the community
that "offensive" writing is not necessarily evil. When literature
is honest and perceptive, the university's responsibility should
be, he said, to teach the community why it is important, not to apologize
and censor it.
Nassau Community College, 1999: HUMAN SEXUALITY COURSE TAKEN TO COURT MORE
Wesleyan (CT) University, 1999: WILL A COURSE IN “PORNOGRAPHY: WRITING OF PROSTITUTES” BE TAUGHT ANY LONGER? MORE
University of Michigan, 2000: COURSE IN “HOW TO BE GAY: MALE HOMOSEXUALITY AND INITIATION” CHALLENGED BY REGENT AND BY AMERICAN FAMILY ASSOCIATION. MORE
Randolph (NC) Community College, 1998: COLLEGE DROPS HISTORY COURSE WITH “PRO-CONFEDERACY” VIEWPOINT MORE
Rushdie (b.1947) was sentenced to death by Ayatollah Komeini in 1989 for
blasphemy against the Koran in his novel The Satanic Verses. Many
book stores, including those on campuses, decided not to carry the novel
because of threats of violence if they did. "What is freedom of expression?"
he asked. "Without the freedom to offend, it ceases to exist."
Any messages ... offensive or disruptive ... that contain sexual implications ... that comment offensively on a person's race, sex, age, sexual orientation, ...." Click here for a view of one company's "Big Brother" type warning to its employees on how--and how not--to use its computers!
A strong essay on harassment, "hostile environment," and campus speech codes (including how students use computers). "I'm very suspicious when authorities piously insist that *their* power is not a problem and that the real problem is *our* racism, sexism, homophobia, etc."
A good summary of types of Acceptable Use Policies re campus computers.
Univ. of Oklahoma, 1997: "BE VERY AFRAID": UNIV. PRESIDENT REMOVES ALT.SEX AND OTHER NEWSGROUPS FROM SERVER. MORE
Univ. of Arizona, 1998-99: BILL REQUIRING UNIVERSITY TO FILTER SITES DIES IN STATE LEGISLATURE MORE
Seattle Pacific Univ., 2000: A RELIGIOUSLY-AFFILIATED UNIVERSITY BEGINS BLOCKING “SEXUALLY-RELATED" WEBSITES MORE
City College of San Francisco; Clemson University, 1999: STUDENT- POSTED TEACHER EVALUATION WEBSITES CHALLENGED MORE
Georgia State Univ., 1996: NEO-NAZI WEB SITE CENSORED: BURNING DOWN THE HOUSE TO ROAST THE PIG? IT IS TRUE, AS THE NAZI "LESSON IN HISTORY" TEACHES, THAT HATEFUL IDEAS SOMETIMES WIN OUT OVER HUMANE ONES. IN A COLLEGE SETTING, HOW SHOULD THIS LESSON BE TAUGHT, WITHOUT CENSORING THE NAZIS? MORE
Clemson University, 2000: STUDENT ACCESS TO INTERNET LONG DISTANCE SERVICE SUSPENDED, THEN, THROUGH MEDIATION, RESTORED MORE
(b.1928) I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings is in the top 20
on the list of most frequently banned books in public schools. The scene
in which 8-year-old Maya is raped is often given as a reason the book is
unsuitable. Consider also this comment by a school superindentent
in MD: "If a child didn't have negative feelings about white people, this
could sow the seeds." Of course, one might have the confidence in his teachers
to believe that they would not present the book in that way . But for many
administrators, pleasing the public is the key consideration.
St. Norbert College (MN), 1999: PLUG PULLED ON READING OF CATCHER IN THE RYE, BUT COLLEGE LEARNS FROM INCIDENT MORE
Siena (NY) College, 1999: HEAVY METAL AND "SHOUT OUTS" BANNED MORE
Univ. of South Carolina, 1996: OFFENSIVE SONGS RESULT IN FORCED RESIGNATION OF STUDENT DISK JOCKEYS MORE
Rutgers University, 1999: ADVERTISING SPACE IN ALUMNI MAGAZINE DENIED TO PROTESTING GROUP MORE