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Scenes from The University of Rhode Island

URI to hold forum on secrecy and public information issues

Media Contact: Jhodi Redlich, 401-874-4500

KINGSTON, R.I. -- March 22, 2006 -- In today's world of increasing access to information and increasing information-overload, maintaining secrecy is both easier and harder than ever before. Many groups have a vested interest both in gathering information and in keeping secrets. So what happens when these interests come into conflict?

A University of Rhode Island Introduction to Information Literacy class and the general public will hear from experts on this issue next week. A look at secrecy and disclosure in public and private life is the topic for a panel discussion Tuesday, March 28 from 4:30 to 6 p.m. in Room 271 of the Chafee Social Science Center, Kingston Campus. The talk is free and open to the public.

Forum speakers Robert Corrente, U.S. Attorney for the District of Rhode Island; Barbara Meagher, URI journalism professor; and James Schroeder, Biotech Researcher, will address the Freedom of Information Act and the need of citizens to be informed about government actions, the U.S. Patriot Act and the government’s legitimate need for secrecy and information collection, and the secrecy needs of business and how that impacts research.

The discussion is the latest in the award-winning Information Issues Forums sponsored by URI Library (Lib 120) instructors and the University of Rhode Island Libraries to teach students that literacy is not just about library skills, but can apply to the information they come across in real life.

For more information, contact Peter Larsen, URI Library assistant professor, 874-4637.