November 28, 2020

USA FREEDOM Act Reintroduced in House and Senate

From Krista Cox at the Assoc. of Research Libraries (ARL):

On April 28, 2015, members of the US House of Representatives and Senate introduced new versions of the USA FREEDOM Act. This legislation would put an end to the current bulk collection practices of the National Security Agency (NSA) taking place under Section 215 of the USA PATRIOT Act, also known as the “library records” or “business records” provision. ARL supports meaningful and effective surveillance reform, such as that provided by the USA FREEDOM Act of 2015.

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The current version of the USA FREEDOM Act represents a better version of the bill that passed the U.S. House of Representatives in the last Congress. In May 2014, the House of Representatives passed a bill that had been severely watered down twice and resulted in many co-sponsors, as well as civil society organizations and associations including ARL, withdrawing their support for the bill. The Senate version of USA FREEDOM Act in the last Congress represented meaningful reform and would have advanced further transparency measures, but fell two votes shy of the necessary 60 votes for cloture. The current version of the USA FREEDOM Act is essentially a compromise between the House and Senate versions from the last Congress.

Read the Full Text Blog Post

Additional Resources & Comment

Review Full Text of the Bill

Review “What’s Different in the New Bill” Chart (via U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee)

Review U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee Web Page About Bill

Q&A on the USA FREEDOM Act of 2015 (via Center for Democracy and Technology)

“One critical transparency flaw in the new USA FREEDOM Act” (via Sunlight Foundation)

UPDATES

April 29, 2015: AALL Urges Enactment of USA FREEDOM Act

About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.

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