American Civil Liberties Union

State Legislatures Take Up Bills Barring Undercover Videos of Confined Animal Feeding Operations
May 6, 2011

Bills aimed at blocking the release of videos taken by activist groups of conditions in confined animal feeding operations are being considered by state legislatures in Iowa, Minnesota and Florida.

At issue are undercover operations by activist groups like the Humane Society of the United States, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals and Mercy for Animals and documentary filmmakers that produce videos showing cattle being bludgeoned to death, baby chickens being shepherded into grinders and unsanitary conditions.

Check Out FS October!
October 7, 2010

Ever wondered what a h-u-g-e-l-y successful major-gifts campaign looks like? How about one that combines a planned-giving element, as well? Lucky you … our October cover story, "Leading Freedom (and Fundraising) Forward," explains how the American Civil Liberties Union pumped up its current coffers and ensured its financial stability well into the future with a…

Alliance of Businesses, Nonprofit Groups Seeks Update of Electronic Privacy Law
March 31, 2010

March 31, 2010, Los Angeles Times A group of businesses and advocacy organizations, including Google Inc., Microsoft Corp., the American Civil Liberties Union and the Electronic Frontier Foundation, said Tuesday that it is calling for an update to a decades-old privacy law it considers seriously outdated. The law governs how and when law enforcement agencies can access citizens' private electronic communications.

Dubbing itself Digital Due Process, the group said the 1986 Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) was written in a time before the Web had become a ubiquitous communications medium, where users around the world store huge amounts of personal information for years or even decades at a time.

Prosecutors and law enforcement frequently request e-mails and other online data when performing investigations, but private companies have argued that the guidelines for such requests have become too loose for their comfort.

Longtime ACLU Donor Confirms $388-Million in Anonymous Gifts
December 11, 2009

December 11, 2009, Chronicle of Philanthropy - David Gelbaum, a former hedge-fund manager who has made large donations anonymously, confirmed that over the past five years he has given a total of nearly $388-million to three organizations.

Civil Liberties Group Loses $20 Million Donor
December 10, 2009

December 10, 2009, The New York Times - A longtime anonymous donor to the American Civil Liberties Union has withdrawn his annual gift of more than $20 million, punching a 25 percent hole in its annual operating budget and forcing cutbacks in operations.

‘Fake Surveys Suck!’
October 1, 2007

‘Fake surveys suck!” This is a piece of comment mail I’ll never forget. Scrawled boldly across the survey in thick, black marker, the donor’s opinion of the organization’s effort to engage him couldn’t have been more succinct.

High Touch With Low Gloss
December 12, 2006

Because most of the mailings I write about for this column are basic packages such as membership renewals, holiday campaigns, annual-fund appeals and acquisition pieces, this high-touch mailing from the ACLU to some of its existing members for its Legacy Challenge really jumped out at me. Mailed in a plain, white No. 10 envelope, this mailing is thorough in its presentation of the Legacy Challenge. The three-page, 8.5-inch-by-11-inch letter lays out the initial ask and how the program works. If the recipient provides for a bequest to the ACLU in her will or trust, 10 percent of the bequest will be matched by a

Sum It Up With a Slogan
October 17, 2006

We live in a world of slogans. Whether through advertising or in the news we get on TV, slogans are everywhere. If you have a message, a catchy or otherwise memorable slogan can make it stick. While nonprofit organizations are not marketers or TV spin doctors, they too have messages that they struggle to have heard above the din. Using slogans of their own is one way to do that, as evidenced in this summer 2006 mailing from the ACLU. The No. 10 outer envelope is edged with a stately red, white and blue-striped border and features a headline that reads, “Crucial decisions are going