Courtesy of the New York Times (registration required - use BugMeNot for a login):
Law enforcement officials have made at least 200 formal and informal inquiries
to libraries for information on reading material and other internal matters
since October 2001, according to a new study that adds grist to the growing
debate in Congress over the government's counterterrorism powers.
"What this says to us," said Emily Sheketoff, the executive director of the
library association's Washington office, "is that agents are coming to libraries
and they are asking for information at a level that is significant, and the
findings are completely contrary to what the Justice Department has been trying
to convince the public."
In addition, the survey found that 66 libraries had received informal law
enforcement requests without an official legal order, including 24 federal
requests. Association officials said the survey results, if extrapolated from
the 500 public libraries that responded, would amount to a total of some 600
formal inquires since 2001.