Free Expression

    Rhett Jackson, the Happy Bookseller

    ABFE Director Chris Finan looks back at the life of Rhett Jackson, a much-honored Southern gentleman who confounded people's expectations and always stood up for civil rights and First Amendment issues.

    ABFE Supports Doctor Sued for Criticizing “Quack Clinic”

    ABFE has joined the Association of American Publishers and other groups in filing a friend of the court brief in a lawsuit that could have a potentially crippling effect on the public debate of important subjects.

    Booksellers Win Ruling Against Louisiana Internet Restriction

    Two New Orleans bookstores have won an important battle in their challenge to a Louisiana law that would require them to verify the age of visitors to their store websites.

    Protesters Picket Author Appearance at Porter Square Books

    Cambridge, Massachusetts, bookstore owner David Sandberg met protestors at an April 19 author appearance with sympathy and respect and a statement that explained why it was important for the event to go on as planned.

    Banned in Boston: The Battle Begins

    This article, part of an occasional series on the history of free speech by ABFE Director Chris Finan, looks at efforts to ban H.L. Mencken's magazine, American Mercury, in 1920s Boston, which marked the start of a critical battle for free speech in books.

    Top Ten Most Challenged Books of 2015 Revealed in ALA Report

    The American Library Association’s 2016 State of America’s Libraries report, which details American library trends of the past year, reveals the 2015 Top Ten List of Most Challenged Books.

    A Statement on the Protest Against North Carolina House Bill 2

    ABA has joined with the Association of American Publishers, the American Library Association Office for Intellectual Freedom, the Children’s Book Council, the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, and the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance to urge authors, illustrators, and publishers not to boycott North Carolina bookstores.

    BTW News Briefs

    Independent We Stand kicks off “America’s Main Streets” contest; Mississippi authors release statement opposing H.B.1523; Lineup announced for Audio Publishers Association Tea at BEA; Pulitzer centennial video available for posting; Sourcebooks acquires first project in partnership with Wattpad; Chris Jackson to relaunch One World imprint; Memorial service planned for Glenn Ellis, longtime PRH sales team member; Paz & Associates introduces spring workshop participants

    BTW News Briefs

    Shawn Morin named CEO and president of Ingram; HarperCollins Publishers creates HarperCollins France; Columbia University Press Sales Consortium adds Harvard University Press; Imprisoned Egyptian novelist wins 2016 PEN/Barbey Freedom to Write Award; Winners of 2015 James Tiptree Jr. Award, 2016 Hans Christian Andersen Award announced; 2016 National Book Awards entry form open; 2016 Kirkus Prize judges named

    Virginia Governor Vetoes Bill Restricting Student Access to Books

    Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe has vetoed a bill that free speech groups feared would have a chilling effect on the selection of books taught in the state’s public schools. In March, ABFE joined a letter urging McAuliffe to veto House Bill 516.

    Reader Privacy and the Apple Case

    In his monthly personal opinion column, ABFE Director Chris Finan discusses the similarities he finds in the government’s attempts to force Apple to unlock the contents of an iPhone and its past maneuvers to infringe on the reader privacy rights of bookstore customers.

    Discounted Admission Available for 2016 PEN World Voices Festival

    More than 150 writers from 30 countries will gather in New York City for the 12th Annual PEN World Voices Festival of International Literature. Booksellers are invited to use a special discount code for online ticket orders and to share the code with their customers.

    ABFE Urges Veto of Virginia Bill Restricting Student Access to Books

    American Booksellers for Free Expression has joined other free speech groups in urging Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe to veto a bill that they fear will have a chilling effect on the selection of books that are taught in the state’s public schools.

    Two Hong Kong Booksellers Released

    Two of the five Hong Kong booksellers who were taken into custody last year by Chinese authorities have returned home, according to Hong Kong police.

    ABFE Joins Protest Over Miami Play Cancellation

    American Booksellers for Free Expression has joined a statement protesting a decision by the Miami Jewish Community Center to cancel a play after only four performances because of complaints that it is critical of Israel.


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