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Library Ethics in the
21st Century
Sarah Houghton - @TheLiB
LibrarianInBlack.net
Director, San Rafael Public Library
• Lack of confidentiality
• Lack of basic human respect
• Information blockades
• Exclusivity
What went wrong?
• Confidentiality
• Respect
• Freedom of information
• Inclusivity
What libraries do right
LIANZA ethics
LIANZA Statement on Access to Information
LIANZA Statement on Intellectual Freedom
LIANZA Code of Practice: Code of
Professional Conduct
LIANZA Statement on Confidentiality of
Library Records
Confidentiality
Any information about identified clients and
their individual interests obtained by
librarians in the course of their professional
duties is privileged and should not be used
for any purpose other than that for which it
was obtained without the express
permission of those clients or unless
required by law.This obligation continues
after the relationship ceases.
(Code of Practice: Code of Professional
Conduct)
IFLA Statement on
Privacy in the Library
Environment
and
Library Digital Privacy
Pledge
[M]embers of our society have a right to
privacy and to protection from misuse and
exploitation of information.
(Statement on Access to Information)
Library User
Library
Privacy? Cool story bro.
All library records relating to individuals shall
be confidential and shall not be revealed to
any person except in accordance with the
above; or in accordance with the provisions of
the Official Information Act 1982 where the
library holding that information is subject to
that Act; or in any other case where the
information is required pursuant to a
subpoena or other order of a court of
competent jurisdiction.
(Statement on Confidentiality of Library Records)
Government
Surveillance
Corporate Surveillance
http://figshare.com/articles/Results_of_2015_Amnesty_International_Yougov_poll_on_government_mass_surveillance/1339031
http://figshare.com/articles/Results_of_2015_Amnesty_International_Yougov_poll_on_government_mass_surveillance/1339031
Respect
A basic right of citizens in a democratic
society is access to information on matters
which affect their lives.
(Statement on Access to Information)
Librarians without first disclosing their
interest should not profit from their
positions save by normal remuneration nor
should they have any financial interest in
goods or services recommended or
supplied without first disclosing that interest.
(Code of Practice: Code of Professional
Conduct)
Freedom of Information
Librarians have a primary duty to their
clients and to society:
(a) to assist in the collection, preservation
and availability of recorded and transmitted
knowledge and ideas.
(b) to facilitate the flow of information and
ideas.
(Code of Practice: Code of Professional Conduct)
Most library vendors lease digital content.
Few sell digital content outright.
KNOW THE DIFFERENCE!
Licensing vs. Owning
Overdrive’s marketing materials & sales
staff use words like buy, purchase, and sale.
Overdrive’s contracts use words like
license and subscribe.
Kansas says $%*&
The Overdrive Case
Does your library get access to the entire
catalog of materials?
Do certain publishers limit terms of access?
Can content be removed?
What publishers and authors are not
included?
Collection Access
eBooks and the Big 6
Source:The Big 6 - eBooks in Libraries Facebook page
0
20
40
60
80
You Your Library
Digital
Rights
Management
Corporate
Terms of
Service
Copyright Law
Doctorow’s First Law
Any time someone puts a lock on
something that belongs to you,
and won’t give you a key, they’re
not doing it for your benefit.
In the service of clients or in the selection
of materials, librarians should not
discriminate on any grounds whatsoever.
(Code of Practice: Code of Professional
Conduct)
No information resources should be excluded
from libraries because of the opinions they
express; nor because of who the author is; nor
on the grounds of the political, social, moral or
other views of their author.
No library materials should be censored,
restricted, removed from libraries, or have
access denied to them because of partisan or
doctrinal disapproval or pressure.This includes
access to web-based information resources.
(Statement on Intellectual Freedom)
Librarians should resist all attempts at
censorship, except where that censorship is
required by law. Librarians are free to
request, and to lobby for, the repeal of laws,
which compromise the principles set out in
this statement.
(Statement on Intellectual Freedom)
Inclusivity
Information providers should demonstrate
a commitment to responsibilities under the
Treaty of Waitangi. Staff providing
information should be familiar with basic
protocol and tikanga and have some
understanding of te reo Māori.
(Statement on Access to Information)
Government agencies – national and local,
Parliament, State Departments, public
corporations, and other authorities – have a
duty to make reports and other documents
widely available for consideration by all
citizens free of charge.
(Statement on Access to Information)
Funders of information providers should
provide adequate financial support to ensure
that the special needs of disabled people,
when accessing information, are met.
(Statement on Access to Information)
Some vendors have not made their digital
content, or the platforms that you use to
access them, truly accessible.
That’s a violation of disability access laws
for most schools and libraries.
Accessibility
What can you do?
8 things!
1. Read and re-
negotiate all of your
digital licensing
contracts.
California Digital Library Model Licenses
2. Talk to digital
content vendors
at conferences.
3. Speak out
against
censorship.
4. Speak out
against
surveillance.
5. Speak out against
the locking down of
information (DRM).
6. Work with your
library to ensure user
privacy is protected in
all ways possible.
7. Advocate for
copyright reform.
8. Talk to your
colleagues about core
library ethics regularly.
UnionLibrarian
+Sarah Houghton

librarianinblack@gmail.com

@TheLiB

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Library Ethics in the 21st Century

  • 1. Library Ethics in the 21st Century Sarah Houghton - @TheLiB LibrarianInBlack.net Director, San Rafael Public Library
  • 2.
  • 3.
  • 4.
  • 5. • Lack of confidentiality • Lack of basic human respect • Information blockades • Exclusivity What went wrong?
  • 6. • Confidentiality • Respect • Freedom of information • Inclusivity What libraries do right
  • 7.
  • 8.
  • 9. LIANZA ethics LIANZA Statement on Access to Information LIANZA Statement on Intellectual Freedom LIANZA Code of Practice: Code of Professional Conduct LIANZA Statement on Confidentiality of Library Records
  • 11.
  • 12. Any information about identified clients and their individual interests obtained by librarians in the course of their professional duties is privileged and should not be used for any purpose other than that for which it was obtained without the express permission of those clients or unless required by law.This obligation continues after the relationship ceases. (Code of Practice: Code of Professional Conduct)
  • 13. IFLA Statement on Privacy in the Library Environment and Library Digital Privacy Pledge
  • 14. [M]embers of our society have a right to privacy and to protection from misuse and exploitation of information. (Statement on Access to Information)
  • 16.
  • 18. All library records relating to individuals shall be confidential and shall not be revealed to any person except in accordance with the above; or in accordance with the provisions of the Official Information Act 1982 where the library holding that information is subject to that Act; or in any other case where the information is required pursuant to a subpoena or other order of a court of competent jurisdiction. (Statement on Confidentiality of Library Records)
  • 19.
  • 21.
  • 23.
  • 26.
  • 28. A basic right of citizens in a democratic society is access to information on matters which affect their lives. (Statement on Access to Information)
  • 29.
  • 30.
  • 31. Librarians without first disclosing their interest should not profit from their positions save by normal remuneration nor should they have any financial interest in goods or services recommended or supplied without first disclosing that interest. (Code of Practice: Code of Professional Conduct)
  • 32.
  • 34.
  • 35. Librarians have a primary duty to their clients and to society: (a) to assist in the collection, preservation and availability of recorded and transmitted knowledge and ideas. (b) to facilitate the flow of information and ideas. (Code of Practice: Code of Professional Conduct)
  • 36.
  • 37. Most library vendors lease digital content. Few sell digital content outright. KNOW THE DIFFERENCE! Licensing vs. Owning
  • 38. Overdrive’s marketing materials & sales staff use words like buy, purchase, and sale. Overdrive’s contracts use words like license and subscribe. Kansas says $%*& The Overdrive Case
  • 39. Does your library get access to the entire catalog of materials? Do certain publishers limit terms of access? Can content be removed? What publishers and authors are not included? Collection Access
  • 40. eBooks and the Big 6 Source:The Big 6 - eBooks in Libraries Facebook page
  • 42.
  • 43.
  • 45.
  • 46.
  • 47. Doctorow’s First Law Any time someone puts a lock on something that belongs to you, and won’t give you a key, they’re not doing it for your benefit.
  • 48.
  • 49. In the service of clients or in the selection of materials, librarians should not discriminate on any grounds whatsoever. (Code of Practice: Code of Professional Conduct)
  • 50.
  • 51. No information resources should be excluded from libraries because of the opinions they express; nor because of who the author is; nor on the grounds of the political, social, moral or other views of their author. No library materials should be censored, restricted, removed from libraries, or have access denied to them because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval or pressure.This includes access to web-based information resources. (Statement on Intellectual Freedom)
  • 52.
  • 53.
  • 54.
  • 55.
  • 56. Librarians should resist all attempts at censorship, except where that censorship is required by law. Librarians are free to request, and to lobby for, the repeal of laws, which compromise the principles set out in this statement. (Statement on Intellectual Freedom)
  • 57.
  • 59. Information providers should demonstrate a commitment to responsibilities under the Treaty of Waitangi. Staff providing information should be familiar with basic protocol and tikanga and have some understanding of te reo Māori. (Statement on Access to Information)
  • 60.
  • 61. Government agencies – national and local, Parliament, State Departments, public corporations, and other authorities – have a duty to make reports and other documents widely available for consideration by all citizens free of charge. (Statement on Access to Information)
  • 62.
  • 63.
  • 64. Funders of information providers should provide adequate financial support to ensure that the special needs of disabled people, when accessing information, are met. (Statement on Access to Information)
  • 65.
  • 66. Some vendors have not made their digital content, or the platforms that you use to access them, truly accessible. That’s a violation of disability access laws for most schools and libraries. Accessibility
  • 67. What can you do? 8 things!
  • 68. 1. Read and re- negotiate all of your digital licensing contracts. California Digital Library Model Licenses
  • 69. 2. Talk to digital content vendors at conferences.
  • 72. 5. Speak out against the locking down of information (DRM).
  • 73. 6. Work with your library to ensure user privacy is protected in all ways possible.
  • 75. 8. Talk to your colleagues about core library ethics regularly.
  • 77.
  • 78.