May 12, 2018

Voice Activated | Technology in Focus

Smart speakers are becoming part of U.S. households, and there’s a lot that the public needs to know, with libraries well positioned to help.

Privacy with Google Analytics | Field Reports

Google Analytics has a lot of configuration options, which is why webmasters love it. For the purposes of user privacy, however, there are just two configuration options to pay attention to, the “IP Anonymization” option and the “Display Features” option.

Fran Glick | Movers & Shakers 2018 – Educators

After 15 years as an elementary school classroom teacher, Fran Glick enrolled in a master’s degree program in instructional technology, with a concentration in school library media. “The moment I entered the program, my inner librarian was awakened,” she says.

AI, Personalization, and Privacy: Top Tech Trends | ALA Midwinter 2018

The Library Information Technology Association’s (LITA) Top Tech Trends Panel, held during the American Library Association’s 2018 Midwinter conference in Denver, CO, included discussions of AI, drones, personalization and privacy, the embedding of libraries in academic learning processes, and more.

Library Freedom Institute to Launch Train-the-Trainers Course on Internet Privacy, Security

This fall New York University (NYU), in partnership with the Library Freedom Project, will be seeking applicants for the Library Freedom Institute (LFI), a new program that will train 40 geographically dispersed librarians as “Privacy Advocates.”

Protecting Patron Privacy

Recently, I was teaching a privacy class for librarians, and the topic turned to the privacy versus convenience trade-off—the occasional annoyances of using privacy-enhancing technologies online. An audience member laid out what she felt I was asking of the group. “You’re telling us to start selling granola when everyone else is running a candy store.”

Library Freedom Project, NYCLU Discuss Privacy and Online Security

The transition from print to electronic record keeping has made it easier and less expensive to store data and search for information, yet this trend has had troubling implications for individual privacy and the security of personal data, explained Mariko Hirose, staff attorney for the New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU) during the “Privacy Toolkit for Librarians” seminar held on March 22 at Long Island’s Farmingdale Public Library (FPL). Co-sponsored by the Greater New York Metropolitan Area chapter of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) and the Long Island Library Resources Council, the half-day event included presentations by Hirose and Library Freedom Project director and 2015 LJ Mover & Shaker Alison Macrina, covering topics including electronic surveillance, records subpoenas, and ways in which libraries can protect their patrons.

Erin Berman | Movers & Shakers 2016 – Tech Leaders

Before December 2014, when she stepped into the new role of San José Public Library’s (SJPL) technology and innovation project manager (now innovations manager), Erin Berman launched SJPL’s first Maker faire, which introduced 200 people to after-school STEM [science, technology, engineering, math] programs. She believes Making can empower her community and help close the digital divide. Statewide, 25 percent of Californians in 2014 lacked broadband Internet access at home, according to a Field Poll. “When someone walks into one of our libraries and says they want to learn something, we don’t just hand them a book; we hand them the tool and teach them how to use it,” Berman says.

Always Watched | The Digital Shift 2015

At Library Journal and School Library Journal’s October 14 virtual conference, The Digital Shift: Libraries Connecting Communities, “Always Watched: How Being Surveilled Online Impacts Us All and What Librarians Can Do About It” , attendees were reminded that government and commercial surveillance is an issue of increasing importance for libraries and users alike, and librarians need to consider issues of privacy more than ever.

With Privacy Pledge, Library Freedom Project Advocates for HTTPS

The Library Freedom Project (LFP) is urging libraries and library vendors to ensure basic online privacy protections for patrons by implementing HTTPS for websites, catalogs, and all other online resources. The HTTPS protocol tells web browsers to encrypt data that is transferred between a browser and a server, preventing third-parties from eavesdropping or tampering with that data.