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Choose Privacy Week . . . in your school! April 8, 2011

Posted by ifcommittee in Check this out!, Committees.

May 1 – 7, 2011 will be the second annual Choose Privacy Week sponsored by ALA’s Office for Intellectual Freedom.  Choose Privacy Week is an invitation to be aware of and talk about privacy rights and choices in libraries and in life.  For school libraries in particular, Choose Privacy Week is an opportunity for librarians to promote discussion about this issue beyond standard internet safety lessons.

Angela Maycock, assistant director of the ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom, states, “Young people are particularly susceptible to the ‘chilling effect’ of privacy loss on their information seeking behavior. If students feel that someone is looking over their shoulders, they are less likely to seek information on sensitive or controversial topics in the school library. With Choose Privacy Week, ALA is reaching out to school librarians with resources they can use to engage students on privacy issues online and in day to day life.” 

The official website for Choose Privacy Week can be found at privacy revolution.org.    The site includes four lesson plans for teaching K-2, 3-5, 6-8, & 9-12 students about their privacy. A Choose Privacy Week Resource Guide, bookmarks and posters, including the poster “I am not an open book,” are all available from the ALA online store.

The Choose Privacy Week video featured on the Privacy Revolution website is an eye-opener.  The film features children’s/young adult authors Neil Gaiman and Cory Doctorow, as well as a past ALA President (who Googles herself and receives over 30,000 hits), and legal authorities on privacy. In the film, Cory Doctorow says, “Facebook is a conditioning system to teach you to undervalue your privacy.” Neil Gaiman talks about some people online being “creepy and invasive.”  (And he’s certainly an expert on creepy!)  A free study guide to accompany the film can be downloaded from the website.  Send a link to the video to your administration and staff, and screen it for older students and families. This video and others are available at the website’s video gallery.    

ALA offered a free Choose Privacy Week webinar on March 31, 2011, featuring a panel of experts on “hot topics” including current research on privacy attitudes of young people. View the slides from the webinar at SlideShare, or the entire webinar at http://tinyurl.com/3qufhbs/.

Choose Privacy Week in early May follows on the heels of Screen Free Week (April 18-24), so the spirit can be ripe for both of these events. Watch for a booklist of titles related to privacy and youth coming to the Privacy Revolution website soon.

Other helpful resources include:

Adams, Helen R. “The Privacy Problem,” School Library Journal, April 2011 http://www.schoollibraryjournal.com/slj/printissuecurrentissue/889643-427/the_privacy_problem_although_school.html.csp

Maycock, Angela. “Choose Privacy Week and School Libraries,” Knowledge Quest, Sept./Oct. 2010.   

Common Sense Media on Privacy: http://www.commonsensemedia.org/educators

Screen Free Week: http://www.commercialfreechildhood.org/screenfreeweek/

 Posted on behalf of the AASL Intellectual Freedom Committee


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