Academic Freedom Watch: Right-Wing "Investigation" Gets University to Take Down Labor Page

While we don't know how this is going to end, this is a disappointing update in the story of how the national battle over labor rights for public services is intruding onto campuses and threatening academic freedom.

After a campaign by a right-wing think tank using FOIA requests targeting professors in a state university's  "labor studies" department, the university has taken a webpage related to labor studies offline to "review" it.

TPM has been closely following the story:

As Wayne State University considers what to do about the Freedom Of Information Act requests Mackinac sent over last month, lawyers at the school have ordered parts of the Labor Studies Center website shut down over concerns from Mackinac that they violate rules against political advocacy with state resources.

The Michigan Information and Research Service News Service reports (sub req'd) that Wayne has pulled down parts of its labor studies dept website while they're "under review by the university's general counsel to make sure they are not running afoul of state law."

 AlterNet readers already may be familiar with a previous incidentwhen Republicans  demanded to see the email inbox of a professor who wrote an op-ed about the Wisconsin conflict. Steve D. wrote then that  Tea Partiers and their corporate sponsors "are attempting to intimidate anyone else in Academia or who works for any governmental body from expressing their opinions."

AlterNet / By Sarah Seltzer

Posted at April 7, 2011, 7:31am

Today's Top Stories