Free Speech Resources for Booksellers

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  • Preparing for Controversial Author Events
    Jamie Fiocco, owner of Flyleaf Books in Chapel Hill, NC, has hosted many controversial author events.  Here are her tips for responding to the threat of protests.
  • Free Speech Checklist 
    Does your bookstore follow free speech best practices? Start with the Free Speech Checklist to find out.
  • "To Our Customers" 
    Have you posted a clear statement of your store's commitment to free speech and customer privacy? Post "To Our Customers," a statement prepared by ABFE. The handsomely illustrated signs are available in two versions.
  • Model Statement on Author Appearances in Bookstores
    Are you ready to address complaints about events involving controversial authors in your store? On request, ABFE will send you a model statement that you can use to help explain why it is important for bookstores to provide a forum for a wide range of views, or download it from the link above.
  • "Protecting Customer Privacy in Bookstores" 
    Do you know what to do when a police officer asks you to reveal customer information? ABFE's "Protecting Customer Privacy in Bookstores" tells you how to handle "official" inquiries, subpoenas, and search warrants.


About ABA

The American Booksellers Association, a national not-for-profit trade organization, works with booksellers and industry partners to ensure the success and profitability of independently owned book retailers, and to assist in expanding the community of the book.

Independent bookstores act as community anchors; they serve a unique role in promoting the open exchange of ideas, enriching the cultural life of communities, and creating economically vibrant neighborhoods.








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