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The Research Process
To gather information for this report, the Center:
b. conducted a discussion on September 18 with Karen Burnett (Coordinator of School Libraries, Fremont Union High School District), Susan Fuller (Santa Clara County Librarian), Anne Marie Gold (Contra Costa County Librarian), Victoria Johnson (Director of the Sunnyvale City Library), Mary Jo Levy (Director of the Palo Alto Public Library), and Jane Light (Director of the San Jose Public Library). Summary minutes of this discussion are included as Appendix 5, along with email messages from other librarians.
c. conducted a "focused discussion meeting" on September 22,
1997, lasting over two hours among 13 advocates of limited access, with
an additional 17 people attending. Shanks
and Stenger conducted the meeting. All participants originally suggested
by the City Councils and others as focus group participants were invited
to participate if they favored limited access. (Appendix
6 includes a sample letter of invitation.) A flyer and letter of invitation
(Appendix 7) was also distributed in public
libraries throughout the county the weekend before the discussion. During
the meeting, JPA and CAC members in attendance were able to submit written
questions, as were other members of the audience, and most questions were
incorporated into the discussion.
e. reviewed thirty email messages sent by librarians, advocates of limited access, and advocates of open access. Messages whose authors agreed to be on the record are included where appropriate in the report.
f. supplemented these meetings and email messages with twelve private phone or in-person conversations, sought either by us or by the other party.
g. gathered information on five filtering software companies: in-person interviews with representatives of Netnanny (CEO Gordon Ross and Les Jickling) SurfWatch (Susan Larson and Ali Solomon); phone interviews with representatives of SafeSurf (Wendy Simpson and Founder Ray Solar), Cybersitter (VP of Marketing Mark Kanter), and X-Stop (CEO Ray Bradshaw).
h. tested the ease with which one could access sexually-explicit sites on the World Wide Web; tested X-Stop's filtering software, especially their librarian filter, for five days.
i. discussed relevant legal matters with two Santa Clara University law professors and a lawyer at the National Law Center.
j. met in executive session with 24 Santa Clara County librarians.
k. conducted a phone interview with Terry Jackson, San Bruno Librarian, whose library has installed filters; and with David Burt of Filtering Facts, an organization advocating the use of filters in libraries.
l. sought new problem-solving approaches and solutions through conversations with Steve Cisler, former librarian and Senior Scientist in the Advanced Technology Group at Apple Computer where he runs the Apple Library of Tomorrow Program; Jeanette Garretty, Vice President and Senior Economist at BankAmerica Corporation; Anthony Pozos, Vice President of Human Resources at Amdahl Corporation; and Suzanne Shaw, KRON-TV Anchorperson.
m. reviewed newspaper coverage of the recent history of this issue in
the County in The San Jose Mercury News, The Gilroy Dispatch,
and The Morgan Hill Times.