Here we offer insights and predictions from five library thinkers who shared their perspectives at the Symposium on the Future of Libraries during the American Library Association’s (ALA) 2020 Midwinter Meeting & Exhibits. From core values such as privacy and sustainability to more novel innovations such as the use of robots, we explore what the … Continue reading What the Future Holds
As city employees are often unable to report to work because of building closures and furloughs, librarians are being reassigned not only to work as contact tracers but also making masks and organizing at food banks. “I think it’s a great fit,” says Lisa Fagundes, adult services librarian at San Francisco Public Library’s (SFPL) Main … Continue reading Librarians Recruited as COVID-19 Hunters
First, Dewey Decibel host and American Libraries Senior Editor Phil Morehart speaks with Becky Yoose, a library data privacy consultant with LDH Consulting Services, about Zoombombing—what it is, who it targets, and how to stop it. Next, Morehart talks with Peter McCracken, electronic resources librarian at Cornell University, about a privacy-services program instituted by the … Continue reading Dewey Decibel Podcast: Privacy Concerns
Letters of the Law is a column exploring a wide range of legal issues that arise in libraries. It is written by two leading authorities: Mary Minow, a librarian with a law degree, and Tom Lipinski, a lawyer with a library degree. Together they have authored four books on the subject, including The Library’s Legal … Continue reading Must My Library Accommodate Service and Support Animals?
The session, part of the Symposium on the Future of Libraries at the American Library Association Midwinter Meeting and Exhibits in Philadelphia on January 25, included both a presentation and a large-group discussion. The first significant item discussed was privacy. The presenters called attention to the seventh article of the ALA Bill of Rights: “All people, regardless of origin, … Continue reading What Types of Technology Should Librarians Scrutinize?
Macmillan Ebook Policy Draws Fire Macmillan Publishers announced a policy preventing libraries from purchasing more than one copy of a new ebook title for the first eight weeks after a book’s release. In protest, American Library Association (ALA) launched the #eBooksForAll petition, which by November 27 had garnered more than 216,000 signatures. Said ALA President … Continue reading 2019 Year in Review
The call represented a trend unfolding in public facilities across the country: individuals who arm themselves with video cameras, proclaim themselves First Amendment auditors, and enter police precincts, post offices, libraries, and other spaces under the auspices of the First Amendment right to free speech in order to record staff violations. The Connecticut caller was … Continue reading Free Speech—or Free-for-All?
Commercial websites aim to capture as much personal data as possible. This data powers a global advertising ecosystem designed to strengthen retail sales through finely targeted ad placement. To manage websites and internet technologies in ways that reflect their values, libraries invariably must make difficult choices and compromises. While they may not be able to … Continue reading Personalization vs. Privacy
First, American Libraries Senior Editor George Eberhart speaks with Nigerian-American science-fiction writer Nnedi Okorafor (Who Fears Death and The Book of Phoenix) about how her heritage influences her work. Then, Dewey Decibel host and American Libraries Senior Editor Phil Morehart speaks with Jonathon Hodge, digital literacy service lead at Toronto Public Library, and Mark Williams, chief librarian … Continue reading Dewey Decibel Podcast: Beyond Our Borders
At “Casting light on the Dark Web: Dispelling myths and using it to preserve your anonymity” on June 23 at the ALA Annual Conference and Exhibition in Washington, D.C., Beckstrom and Brady Lund, PhD student at Emporia (Kans.) University School of Library and Information Management, explained the basics of the dark web and how libraries … Continue reading In the Deep Beneath the Iceberg
With her colleague Kathleen Ross, head of technical services at St. John Fisher College’s Lavery Library, Greco presented “Library Confidentiality: Your Privacy is Our Business,” a comprehensive primer on privacy and libraries, at the American Library Association’s 2019 Annual Conference and Exhibition in Washington, D.C. In the first of many audience engagement moments, Ross and … Continue reading A Library Privacy Primer
It’s an example of learning analytics, the use of data to understand and optimize learning and learning environments. The general concept isn’t new—the university’s announcement noted that student retention has been studied for more than 30 years—but the amount of data that is easy to generate with card swipes has exploded in recent years. And … Continue reading Data Collection and Privacy