• Librarians, hackers and privacy activists gather in San Francisco, June 29/30

    If you follow news about mass surveillance, you may have heard
    about growing world of librarians fighting for Internet freedom.
    Since Snowden's revelations in June 2013, librarian-activism in
    defense of digital privacy and intellectual freedom has spread across the country.

    Back in September, we wrote about our work with librarians in
    Massachusetts, who began teaching digital security classes as a way to
    introduce privacy-protecting tools to their patrons. That initiative became the
    Library Freedom Project winning Knight Foundation funding
    to expand the work to libraries nationwide.

    People are taking note: the work LFP and other privacy-warrior
    librarians has been covered on Boing Boing here
    and here.

    The movement has reached a fever pitch as
    like-minded information professionals nationwide work to shape
    the role libraries have in ensuring that our rights go with us
    when we go online.

    The Library Freedom Project is convening a
    special event for librarians, technologists, and privacy activists to
    strategize about initiatives to protect reader privacy, reform digital
    lending, combat censorship, and champion access to information
    technology in light of emerging concerns over government surveillance,
    censorship, and other forms of electronic exploitation of personal data.

    The two-day event
    will take place on June 29th and 30th at San Francisco's iconic
    Noisebridge hackerspace, and falls directly after the American Library
    Association's Annual Conference, which is also being held in San
    Francisco this year. You're invited, and it's free to attend.

    We'll have attorneys from the American Civil Liberties Union and the Electronic
    Frontier Foundation (who are leading lawsuits challenging the legality
    of the National Security Agency's mass surveillance programs), along with experts on copyright and the future of digital
    lending from Creative Commons and the Internet Archive. Technologists
    from the Freedom of the Press Foundation (where Edward Snowden is a
    board member) and Mozilla will be onsite providing in-depth
    anti-surveillance technology training at the hackerspace. The event also
    features librarians from a number of libraries, including the San
    Francisco and Oakland Public Library systems, as well as Oakland-based
    Hack the Hood, speaking on the challenges of providing access to
    technology and training for Bay Area youth.


  • Radical Librarianship: how ninja librarians are ensuring patrons' electronic privacy

    It's no secret that libraries are among our most democratic institutions. Libraries provide access to information and protect patrons' right to explore new ideas, no matter how controversial or subversive. Libraries are where all should be free to satisfy any information need, be it for tax and legal documents, health information, how-to guides, historical documents, children's books, or poetry.