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MLA Advocacy Update

Update on MLA’s Work to Address Changes to the Michigan Library Privacy Act

December 19, 2019

Since the introduction of SB611 by Senator Peter MacGregor on October 29, MLA has been gathering input from library directors, deans and others about support and concern on the proposed changes. MLA believes that library privacy is a core value to librarianship and any changes to the Privacy Act should be vetted through the proper channels. This bill was introduced without MLA input. MLA has taken the past 45 days to gather your thoughts and try to find a way to find compromises to the concerns that you’ve brought to our attention in order to get the best possible changes in front of Senator MacGregor by mid-January when it is expected to move forward in the legislative process. 

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Cultural Advocacy Network of Michigan (CAN)

December 18, 2019

For the past five months, MLA has been involved in the formation of a new organization, the Cultural Advocacy Network of Michigan (CAN). This new initiative was started by the leaders of eight statewide cultural organizations, including the Michigan Library Association, Historical Society of Michigan, Michigan Museums Association, Michigan Presenters Network, Michigan Festivals and Events Association, Michigan Youth Arts, Michigan Historic Preservation Network and the Michigan Humanities. We are actively pursuing a number of other statewide cultural entities to join us as well.

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Legislation Amending Library Privacy Act Introduced in Senate

November 7, 2019

On October 29, State Senators Peter MacGregor (R-Rockford), Adam Hollier (D-Detroit) and Ruth Johnson (R-Holly) introduced Senate Bill 611. This bipartisan bill amends the Michigan Library Privacy Act, 1982 PA 455, enabling libraries, if they choose, to work with law enforcement when the library is a victim of a crime, or a crime occurs at the library. Currently, libraries cannot release library records to law enforcement without a court order. The bill has been referred to the Committee on Judiciary and Public Safety. 

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Macmillan CEO Responds to #ebooksforall Advocates in a Letter to Librarians

October 29, 2019

Macmillan Publishers CEO, John Sargent has issued a letter in response to #ebooksforall advocates. Beginning November 1, 2019, Macmillan Publisher's eBook embargo will go into effect. The new Macmillan lending policy will allow libraries to purchase only one copy of each new eBook title for the first eight weeks after a book’s release. Advocates have been signing the #ebooksforall petition and contacting Macmillan's CEO to urge Macmillan to abandon this new lending model. On Tuesday, October 29, Macmillan issued a response in a "Letter to Librarians" from CEO John Sargent. Stay tuned for more news on #ebooksforall advocacy. Read the full text of the letter here:

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ALA Denounces Amazon, Macmillan in Response to Congressional Inquiry on Competition in Digital Markets

October 25, 2019

WASHINGTON, D.C.– Current practices by content publishers and distributors in digital markets limit libraries’ ability to deliver core services, according to a new report publicly released today by the American Library Association (ALA). Submitted in response to an inquiry from the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on the Judiciary Subcommittee on Antitrust, Commercial and Administrative Law, ALA’s report underscores practices by companies like Amazon and Macmillan Publishers that threaten Americans’ right to read what and how they choose and imperil other fundamental First Amendment freedoms. The report urges lawmakers to curb anti-competitive practices of digital market actors. Download the Digital Markets Report

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