Senate Votes to Restore Net Neutrality

    The Senate voted on May 16 to pass a Congressional Review Act resolution that would roll back the Federal Communications Commission’s Restoring Internet Freedom Order.

    Amazon Balks at Seattle’s “Head Tax” to Help the Homeless

    The tax applies to companies that gross at least $20 million per year and will fund affordable housing and homeless services; since its proposal, Amazon — the city’s largest employer — has resisted the measure.

    “Prime Numbers” Spurs Booksellers to Urge Lawmakers to Level Playing Field

    Booksellers are reaching out to lawmakers in response to a recent report that illuminated the repercussions of Amazon’s failure to collect and remit sales tax on its third-party marketplace sales.

    Introducing Maria Peroni, ABA Advocacy and Public Policy Coordinator

    “I believe working in the interests of independent booksellers is inherently working in the interest of free expression,” said Peroni, who joined the ABFE, advocacy, and public policy team this month.

    Supreme Court Hears Oral Arguments in Sales Tax Fairness Case

    South Dakota v. Wayfair, Overstock, and Newegg addresses online retailers’ obligation to collect and remit sales tax and what constitutes a business’ physical presence in a state.

    Booksellers Urged to Get Word Out About Prime Numbers

    ABA and Civic Economics have made available a variety of resources to support booksellers’ efforts to promote discussion and take action to ensure that Amazon competes with their stores on a level playing field.

    Free Expression Groups Express Concern Over FOSTA

    The “Allow States and Victims to Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act” (FOSTA) authorizes prosecutors to target websites that host sex trafficking advertisements and creates new civil liability for the sites.

    ABA Ramps Up Efforts Urging Release of Bookseller Detained in China

    Last month, Gui Minhai stated he wanted no help from any concerned nations or organizations, but many media outlets reported that it was likely his statement was coerced by the Chinese government.

    California’s Private Sector Retirement Plan About to Become a Reality

    Employers with five or more employees that don’t already provide a retirement plan will be required to offer a retirement plan of their choosing or provide employees access to the state-run program.

    Protesters Attempt to Shut Down Author Event at Green Apple

    Protesters demanded that the bookstore cancel the scheduled in-store appearance of Francisco Cantú, a former Border Patrol officer who is promoting his debut memoir, The Line Becomes a River.

    Around Indies

    The Book House opens in New Jersey; New owner for Brace Books & More; Bank Street Book Nook changes hands; Bright Side Bookshop marks first anniversary; Battle Creek Books plans name, location change; [words] recognized for autism efforts; Bookshop Santa Cruz launches Women’s Voices program

    NCAC’s Chris Finan Talks Free Speech at PubWest

    At the annual PubWest conference, National Coalition Against Censorship Executive Director Chris Finan spoke to publishers about the current state of free speech in the U.S. 

    ABFE Urges State Department to Step Up Efforts to Free Chinese Bookseller

    The American Booksellers for Free Expression asked the U.S. State Department to “redouble its efforts” on behalf of publisher/bookseller Gui Minhai, who has again been detained by Chinese authorities.

    ABFE Free Speech Report

    Over the past month, the American Booksellers for Free Expression has been busy working with free speech groups to oppose a number of attempts by schools or courts to censor books and to limit free speech.

    Chinese Authorities Confirm the Arrest of Bookseller Gui Minhai

    On Tuesday, February 6, the Chinese government confirmed that it had arrested Gui Minhai, a Chinese-born Swedish national and bookseller associated with Mighty Current publishing house.

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