PREVIEW: Intersect Alerts

Intersect Alert – May 27, 2019

Publishing

How I Became Easy Prey to a Predatory Publisher

“I was nursing my wounds from my latest manuscript rejection when the email arrived. I was about 2 years into my assistant professorship, with the tenure clock running at full speed, and the pressure to publish was immense. I knew that navigating rejection was part of the job, but I was also starting to wonder whether my study—a modest project designed to be feasible with the minimal lab space and skeleton crew of a new professor—would ever see the light of day. So when I received the email from a newly launched journal inviting me to publish with them, I saw a lifeline. That’s when my troubles started.”

“I had heard about ‘predatory’ journals during my graduate training but had no experience with them. The email appeared legitimate. It spelled my name correctly, referenced some of my previous work, and used correct grammar. The journal wasn’t on Beall’s List of Predatory Journals and Publishers. I thought I had done my due diligence. I submitted my manuscript. Shortly after, I celebrated the first round of favorable reviews. Things were going great—or so I thought.”

Copyright

Reddit Commenter's Fight for Anonymity Is a Win for Free Speech and Fair Use

“A fight over unmasking an anonymous Reddit commenter has turned into a significant win for online speech and fair use. A federal court has affirmed the right to share copyrighted material for criticism and commentary, and shot down arguments that Internet users from outside the United States can’t ever rely on First Amendment protections for anonymous speech.”

“EFF represents the Reddit commenter, who uses the name “Darkspilver.” A lifelong member of the Jehovah’s Witness community, Darkspilver shared comments and concerns about the Jehovah’s Witness organization via one of Reddit’s online discussion groups. Darkspilver’s posts included a copy of an advertisement asking for donations that appeared on the back of a Watch Tower magazine, as well as a chart they edited and reformatted to show the kinds of data that the Jehovah’s Witness organization collects and processes.”

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2019/05/reddit-commenters-fight-anonynmity-win-free-speech-and-fair-use

Search

Online Research Browsers 2019

“This guide highlights multifaceted browser alternatives to mainstream search tools that researchers may regularly use by default. There are many reliable yet underutilized applications that facilitate access to and discovery of subject matter specific documents and sources. Free applications included here also offer collaboration tools, resources to build and manage repositories, to employ data visualization, to create and apply metadata management, citations, bibliographies, document discovery and data relationship analysis.”

https://llrx.com/2019/05/online-research-browsers-2019/

Investigating the Impact of Gender on Ran in Resume Search Engines

“ABSTRACT - In this work we investigate gender-based inequalities in the context of resume search engines, which are tools that allow recruiters to proactively search for candidates based on keywords and filters. If these ranking algorithms take demographic features into account (directly or indirectly), they may produce rankings that disadvantage some candidates. We collect search results from Indeed, Monster, and CareerBuilder based on 35 job titles in 20 U. S. cities, resulting in data on 855K job candidates. Using statistical tests, we examine whether these search engines produce rankings that exhibit two types of indirect discrimination: individual and group unfairness. Furthermore, we use controlled experiments to show that these websites do not use inferred gender of candidates as explicit features in their ranking algorithms.”

https://cbw.sh/static/pdf/chen-chi18.pdf

Libraries

The FY2019-2023 Digital Strategic Plan of the Library of Congress

“The Library of Congress’s mission is to engage, inspire, and inform the Congress and the American people with a universal and enduring source of knowledge and creativity. To accomplish that mission, the Library is adopting a digital-forward strategy that harnesses technology to bridge geographical divides, expand our reach, and enhance our services. This document describes how we will secure the Library’s position in an increasingly digital world as we realize our vision that all Americans are connected to the Library of Congress.”

“The Digital Strategy complements the Library’s 2019-2023 strategic plan, Enriching the User Experience, which enumerates four high-level goals: expand access, enhance services, optimize resources, and measure results. The Digital Strategy describes what the Library plans to accomplish, in terms of digital transformation, over the next five years to achieve these goals. The transformation we describe below applies to all of the Library’s programs, including our collections, researcher services, the United States Copyright Office, the Congressional Research Service, and the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped.”

https://www.loc.gov/static/portals/digital-strategy/documents/Library-of-Congress-Digital-Strategy-v1.1.2.pdf

Privacy

Google’s Sundar Pichai: Privacy Should Not Be a Luxury Good

“MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. — Google products are designed to be helpful. They take the friction out of daily life (for example, by showing you the fastest route home at the end of a long day) and give you back time to spend on things you actually want to do. We feel privileged that billions of people trust products like Search, Chrome, Maps and Android to help them every day.”

“It’s a trust we match with a profound commitment to responsibility and a healthy dose of humility. Many words have been written about privacy over the past year, including in these pages. I believe it’s one of the most important topics of our time.”

“People today are rightly concerned about how their information is used and shared, yet they all define privacy in their own ways. I’ve seen this firsthand as I talk to people in different parts of the world. To the families using the internet through a shared device, privacy might mean privacy from one another. To the small-business owner who wants to start accepting credit card payments, privacy means keeping customer data secure. To the teenager sharing selfies, privacy could mean the ability to delete that data in the future.”

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/07/opinion/google-sundar-pichai-privacy.html

Reclaim Your Privacy with These Privacy-Focused Alternatives to Google’s Services

“We put up with Google because the apps are awesome. But there are downsides to living in the panopticon. If you’d prefer not to have a corporation and all its buddies breathing down your neck, consider these privacy-focused alternatives to Google’s services.”

“While free services were preferred in our analysis, paid services are the reality of the privacy-first space. Companies can’t make money off your data, so advertisers don’t pay the bills. It’s up to you to pay. ‘If you’re not paying for the product, you are the product.’”

https://www.maketecheasier.com/google-services-alternatives-2/

San Francisco Takes a Historic Step Forward in the Fight for Privacy

“The San Francisco Board of Supervisors voted today by 8-to-1 to make San Francisco the first major city in the United States to ban government use of face surveillance technology. This historic measure applies to all city departments. The Stop Secret Surveillance Ordinance also takes an important step toward ensuring a more informed and democratic process before the San Francisco Police Department and other city agencies may acquire other kinds of surveillance technologies.”

“Face recognition technology is a particularly pernicious form of surveillance, given its disparate propensity to misidentify women, and people of color. However, even if those failures were addressed, we are at a precipice where this technology could soon be used to track people in real-time. This would place entire communities of law-abiding residents into a perpetual line-up, as they attend worship, spend time with romantic partners, attend protests, or simply go about their daily lives.”

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2019/05/san-francisco-takes-historic-step-forward-fight-privacy




Intersect Alert - May 20, 2019

Privacy

Alexa, Are You Spying on Me?

“In May, an Amazon Echo device arbitrarily recorded the private conversation of a Portland family and sent it to a random person in their contacts list, reigniting concerns over the security flaws of smart speakers.”

“And to be fair, smart speakers like the Echo and Google Home have had their fair share of nightmare incidents to justify suspicions and mistrust in their reliability. But while installing a smart speaker in your home does come with security tradeoffs, we often misunderstand them, exaggerating the less critical ones while neglecting the more serious risks.”

“Here’s what you need to know about the security and privacy implications of smart speakers, both the myths and the realities.”

https://www.dailydot.com/debug/alexa-smart-speaker-vulnerabilities/

California: Tell the Senate to Empower You to Protect Your Own Privacy

“Californians have a constitutional right to privacy, and 94 percent of Californians agree they should be able to take companies that violate their privacy to court.”

“S.B. 561, authored by Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson, would provide consumers with that right and also improve existing tools for the state attorney general to enforce the California Consumer Privacy Act. This bill is the only one in the California legislature today to strengthen enforcement of the CCPA.”

“California State Sen. Anthony Portantino, chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, will make the decision about whether to move this bill forward next week.”

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2019/05/california-tell-your-legislators-stand-your-privacy

Consumer Groups Accuse Amazon of Illegally Collecting Data on Children

“A coalition of 19 consumer and privacy groups plans to file a complaint Thursday alleging that Amazon’s Echo Dot Kids Edition is illegally collecting voice recordings and other identifying information on users under 13 and that the system’s parental controls are flawed.”

“The complaint says that the Echo Dot Kids Edition — a colorful, youth-oriented version of Amazon’s popular “smart speaker” systems that allow users to ask questions, play music or control thermostats with voice commands — violates the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act, known as COPPA. The 1998 law sharply limits what data companies can collect without permission from parents.”

“The 96-page complaint is the latest in a series by consumer and privacy groups urging the Federal Trade Commission to intensify its enforcement of how leading technology companies treat children and their personal data. The Institute for Public Representation at Georgetown University Law Center served as counsel to the groups on the complaint.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/technology/2019/05/08/2af2d282-71cc-11e9-b5ca-3d72a9fa8ff1_story.html?utm_term=.348afc21e4d4

Publishing

Who Owns the Law? Why We Must Restore Public Ownership of Legal Publishing

“Abstract: Each state has its own method for officially publishing the law. This article looks at the history of legal publishing for the fifty states before looking at how legal publishing even in moving to electronic publishing may not ensure public access to the law. The article addresses barriers to free access to the law in electronic publishing including copyright, contract law, and potentially, the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. The article concludes with prescriptions for how different actors, including state governments, publishers, libraries, and others can ensure robust public access to the law moving forward.”

https://osf.io/preprints/lawarxiv/xnbcp/

Professional Development

NNLM Resource Picks Webinar: NLM’s Data Discovery and Pillbox

“NNLM Resource Picks is a collaborative, bimonthly, webinar series featuring the National Library of Medicine resources to increase awareness of these resources as well as encourage their integration by libraries and other organizations to more fully serve their colleagues and communities.”

“Attend the next webinar session, “NLM’s Data Discovery and Pillbox” on Wednesday, May 29 at 3:00 p.m. ET (please adjust to your time zone).”

“As the National Library of Medicine transitions to become a platform for biomedical discovery and data-powered health, one area of focus is building a workforce for data-driven research and health. In support of this strategic goal, NLM launched Data Discovery, an online platform for making data findable, interoperable, accessible, and reusable (the FAIR principles). In addition to browser-based exploration, filtering, and visualization of data, Data Discovery includes Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) to help researchers and developers build applications that leverage its datasets. Pillbox, NLM’s pill identification and reference resource, long overdue for redesign, was rebuilt using Data Discovery as its foundation to showcase the power of this platform.”

“You are encouraged to attend the live session but the webinar will be recorded. The webinar is free but be sure to register to receive login information prior to the webinar!”

https://news.nnlm.gov/bhic/2019/05/nnlm-resource-picks-webinar-nlms-data-discovery-and-pillbox/

Libraries

To Fight Misinformation, Bring our Libraries Online

“Misinformation -- how it develops, how it spreads, and why people believe it -- is an unavoidable topic in current information policy debates. And though headlines have largely focused on the high-profile impacts of misinformation on everything from public health to voting behaviors and technological literacy, there’s another, more important question at stake: How do we combat it when it emerges?”

“Misinformation takes advantage of the unavoidable fact that no one can be an expert at everything. People’s impressions about the world, its contours and rules, are based on some combination of personal experience and knowledge imparted by outside sources. This is why fights about how we teach U.S. history to young children resonate so strongly; for many of those kids, that’s all the history instruction they’ll ever receive. The rest of the knowledge is just what they absorb from the media they consume and the other people they talk to.”

“Misinformation exploits this basic fact of human nature -- that no one can be an expert in everything -- by meeting people where they naturally are, and filling in the gaps in their knowledge with assertions that seem “plausible enough.” Sometimes, these assertions are misleading, false, or flatly self-serving (though they do lead to some spectacular twitter fights). In aggregate, these gap-fillers add up to construct a totally alternate reality whose politics, science, law, and history bear only a passing resemblance to our own. And in the absence of accessible, high-quality, primary source information, it’s next to impossible to convince people that what they’ve been told isn’t true.”

https://www.publicknowledge.org/news-blog/blogs/to-fight-misinformation-bring-our-libraries-online#When:15:51:00Z

Library Systems Report 2019

“The library technology industry, broadly speaking, shows more affinity toward utility than innovation. Library automation systems are not necessarily exciting technologies, but they are workhorse applications that must support the complex tasks of acquiring, describing, and providing access to materials and services. They represent substantial investments, and their effectiveness is tested daily in the library. But more than efficiency is at stake: These products must be aligned with the priorities of the library relative to collection management, service provision, and other functions.”

“Outdated automation systems can reinforce work patterns that no longer reflect priorities as core library activities change. Bursts of innovation can create new products better aligned with current library realities. The products that emerge out of these creative booms then become mainstays that support the next phase of library operations. The academic library sector can be seen as a cycle of innovation that began eight years ago with the inception of an automation product substantially different from previous systems. The trajectory of innovation for public and school libraries has followed a different course, characterized by incremental change layered on top of longstanding systems with aging architectures.”

https://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/2019/05/01/library-systems-report-2019/

Colliding Values at Doane

“Doane University in Nebraska shuttered a library exhibit and put a librarian on leave over historical photos of students in blackface. The university says the images ran counter to its values and, as presented, served no educational purpose. Some of the librarian’s faculty supporters disagree and say that Doane interfered in a learning moment, albeit a painful one, that their colleague was already working to right.”

http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2019/05/06/doane-u-suspends-library-director-over-exhibit-included-1920s-era-students-blackface

Intersect Alert – May 5, 2019

Search

Measure of Things

“The Measure of Things is a search engine for finding comparative or relative measurements of physical quantities.”

“With the Measure of Things tool, you can take a physical quantity - like 84 kilograms or 23 cubic meters - and see how it compares to a list of famous or well-known objects. For example, 84 kilograms is the weight of about 17 gallons of paint, while 23 cubic meters is about twice the volume of a cement mixer truck.”

“You can use the Measure of Things to research equivalent measures for several types of quantities, including weight, length, speed, time, height, area, volume, and computer data.”

https://www.bluebulbprojects.com/measureofthings/default.php

Library Extension

“The #1 Browser Extension that lets you instantly see book and e-book availability from your local library. Easily discover books and ebooks available at your local library!”

“Access to more than one library? No more searching across multiple library catalogs. All conveniently displayed on the sites you visit already!”

https://www.libraryextension.com/

 

Privacy

What Amazon Knows About You

“Depending on how much you shop, watch and read with Amazon, the e-commerce behemoth may know more about you than any other company on earth.”

“The big picture: Naturally, they know what you've browsed or bought on their main service. They also know what you've asked Alexa, watched on Prime, and read on your Kindle. They know even more thanks to their ownership of Whole Foods, Ring, Eero, Twitch, Goodreads, IMDB and Audible.”

“Details: As with Google or Facebook, what Amazon knows depend on how much you rely on its services. That said, these days Amazon's services are all around us. Here are some of the different types of information gathered by various Amazon services.”

https://www.axios.com/what-amazon-knows-about-you-2df28404-b975-4bc8-b2da-ac702e601cf8.html

Introducing Auto-Delete Controls for Your Location History and Activity Data

“Whether you’re looking for the latest news or the quickest driving route, we aim to make our products helpful for everyone. And when you turn on settings like Location History or Web & App Activity, the data can make Google products more useful for you—like recommending a restaurant that you might enjoy, or helping you pick up where you left off on a previous search. We work to keep your data private and secure, and we’ve heard your feedback that we need to provide simpler ways for you to manage or delete it.”

“You can already use your Google Account to access simple on/off controls for Location History and Web & App Activity, and if you choose—to delete all or part of that data manually. In addition to these options, we’re announcing auto-delete controls that make it even easier to manage your data. Here’s how they’ll work:”

https://www.blog.google/technology/safety-security/automatically-delete-data/

The EU Wants to Build One of the World's Largest Biometric Databases. What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

“China and India have built the world’s largest biometric databases, but the European Union is about to join the club.”

“The Common Identity Repository (CIR) will consolidate biometric data on almost all visitors and migrants to the bloc, as well as some EU citizens—connecting existing criminal, asylum, and migration databases and integrating new ones. It has the potential to affect hundreds of millions of people.”

“The plan for the database, first proposed in 2016 and approved by the EU Parliament on April 16, was sold as a way to better track and monitor terrorists, criminals, and unauthorized immigrants.”

http://fortune.com/2019/05/01/eu-biometric-database-india/

Cloud Database Removed After Exposing Details on 80 Million US Households

“In a blow to consumers' privacy, the addresses and demographic details of more than 80 million US households were exposed on an unsecured database stored on the cloud, independent security researchers have found.”

“The details included names, ages and genders as well as income levels and marital status. The researchers, led by Noam Rotem and Ran Locar, were unable to identify the owner of the database, which until Monday was online and required no password to access. Some of the information was coded, like gender, marital status and income level. Names, ages and addresses were not coded.”

“The data didn't include payment information or Social Security numbers. The 80 million households affected make up well over half of the households in the US, according to Statista.”

https://www.cnet.com/news/cloud-database-removed-after-exposing-details-on-80-million-us-households/

Research

Evaluating Shepard’s, KeyCite, and Bcite for Case Validation Accuracy

“Abstract: This study evaluates and compares how accurately three legal citators (Shepard’s, KeyCite, and BCite) identify negative treatment of case law, based on a review of 357 citing relationships that at least one citator labeled as negative. In this sample, Shepard’s and KeyCite missed or mislabeled about one-third of negative citing relationships, while BCite missed or mislabeled over two-thirds. The citators’ relative performance is less clear when examining the most serious citator errors, examples of which can be found in all three citators.”

https://scholarship.law.wm.edu/libpubs/131/

Copyright

Media Alert: Court Hearing Monday for Redditor Fighting to Stay Anonymous

“San Francisco – On Monday, May 6 at 11am, the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) will argue that a San Francisco court should quash a subpoena from the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society aimed at getting the identity of an anonymous Reddit commenter.”

“Watch Tower is the supervising body and publisher of all religious doctrines for the Jehovah’s Witnesses. EFF’s client is a lifelong member of the Jehovah’s Witness community, and has used the handle ‘darkspilver’ to share comments and spark discussion about the religious organization in one of Reddit’s online discussion groups. Watch Tower subpoenaed Reddit for information on darkspilver earlier this year, claiming it was part of a potential copyright lawsuit over material shared in the Reddit group.”

https://www.eff.org/press/releases/media-alert-court-hearing-monday-redditor-fighting-stay-anonymous

Intersect Alert - April 29, 2019

Books and Reading

Sure, you could buy that book online for $15. But here’s what that book really costs us.

"Danny Caine, who is 32, was sitting in the tiny office of his bookstore the other day when he heard a customer at the counter say something he hears a lot.
 
Listening to the clerk patiently try to answer the customer’s complaint, he stifled his reflexive frustration and decided to do something productive."
 

Internet Users

Study identifies 80% of journalists falling for false online info

“In a new study conducted by the Institute for the Future, a California-based nonprofit think tank, researchers found more than 80% of journalists admitted to falling for false information online. The data was based on a survey of 1,018 journalists at regional and national publications in the United States. Perhaps more concerning: Only 14.9% of journalists surveyed said they had been trained on how to best report on misinformation…”
 

Libraries

Extraordinary' 500-year-old library catalogue reveals books lost to time

"It sounds like something from Carlos Ruiz Zafón’s The Shadow of the Wind and his The Cemetery of Forgotten Books: a huge volume containing thousands of summaries of books from 500 years ago, many of which no longer exist. But the real deal has been found in Copenhagen, where it has lain untouched for more than 350 years."
 

Is Shakespeare’s DNA Hiding in the Folger Library’s Vault?

"The Folger Shakespeare Library’s underground storage facility stretches a full block beneath the building, protected by a nine-inch-thick steel bank-vault door. It houses about 260,000 historically significant books, along with manuscripts, documents, and even costumes saved from 19th-century productions."

Yale students aren’t ready to close the book on the school’s libraries just yet

"During the past few years, Yale University has seen more than its fair share of student activism. In 2015, protests over issues of race and discrimination rocked the campus for weeks. After President Trump’s inauguration in 2017, more than 1,000 students rallied in opposition to the administration’s immigration policies. Over the past week, students have protested the shooting of an unarmed black woman by local police.
But another recent cause celebre in New Haven was notably geekier: Save the books."
 

Privacy

41% of voice assistant users have concerns about trust and privacy

“Forty-one percent of voice assistant users are concerned about trust, privacy and passive listening, according to a new report from Microsoft focused on consumer adoption of voice and digital assistants. And perhaps people should be concerned — all the major voice assistants, including those from Google, Amazon, Apple and Samsung, as well as Microsoft, employ humans who review the voice data collected from end users…”

Intersect Alert - April 22, 2019

Freedom of Information

Mueller Report Censorship Raises Question: What’s the Government Hiding?

"The National Security Archive has published hundreds of examples over the years of “dubious secrets” where U.S. government censors blacked out documents that had already been released in full – or redacted entirely different parts of the same document at different times.  This surprisingly common occurrence throws into relief how subjective the classification process is and how often agency declassifiers opt for the most sweeping rulings that wind up denying the public reasonable access to their government’s information."

Librarians

Why Doctors and Librarians Make Great Partners

"Raising a community of readers is a fundamental objective of public libraries. Libraries make it their primary business to build readers, with story times, readers advisory, thoughtfully developed collections, and more. But libraries don’t do all the heavy lifting on their own. They get plenty of help from their communities—even at the doctor’s office."
 

Publishing

Elsevier’s Presence on Campuses Spans More Than Journals. That Has Some Scholars Worried

"On a recent panel on challenges to the future of teaching and research, Colleen Lyon outlined what was, to her, a "dangerous" dynamic in the world of academic publishing. "


Technology

Why You Should Use a Password Manager

"Have you ever used ABCDE or 12345 as a website password? If so, you’re not alone. Too many people use weak or common passwords for their online accounts and often the same password for multiple sites.
 
That approach leaves your passwords wide open to hackers who can quickly figure them out. Password managers are one solution as they can create, store, and apply strong and complex passwords for all the websites you use."

Values

Earth Day 2019 – Protecting At-Risk Fish, Birds, and Animals

"It’s Earth Day; and this year’s theme is about broadening protection for at-risk species and their habitats. What is the nation doing on this front? Today’s WatchBlog examines some national and international efforts….”
 

Scientists propose bird conservation plan based on eBird data

"A blueprint for conserving enough habitat to protect the populations of almost one-third of the warblers, orioles, tanagers and other birds that migrate among the Americas throughout the year is detailed in research published April 15 in Nature Communications."  
 
 

Intersect Alert - April 15, 2019

Libraries

A bibliophile’s paradise: the National Library of France in a classic documentary from 1956

“Before there was the internet, there was la Bibliothèque nationale de France (the National Library of France) in Paris: an ever-expanding collection of books, manuscripts, maps and other cultural artifacts that has been operating continuously since the 15th century. The documentary Toute la mémoire du monde (All the Memory in the World), made by the influential and celebrated French filmmaker Alain Resnais in 1956, is an astounding tour of the institution before digitisation, when the world’s largest well of information wasn’t at our fingertips, but fastidiously collected and sorted behind library walls."
https://www.bespacific.com/a-bibliophiles-paradise-the-national-library-of-france-in-a-classic-documentary-from-1956/

‘Extraordinary’ 500-year-old library catalogue reveals books lost to time

“It sounds like something from Carlos Ruiz Zafón’s The Shadow of the Wind and his The Cemetery of Forgotten Books: a huge volume containing thousands of summaries of books from 500 years ago, many of which no longer exist. But the real deal has been found in Copenhagen, where it has lain untouched for more than 350 years."

https://www.bespacific.com/extraordinary-500-year-old-library-catalogue-reveals-books-lost-to-time/

 

Obama’s Presidential Library Is Already Digital

"As the highly anticipated Obama Presidential Library in Chicago morphed into the Obama Presidential Center—without a place to hold the records of his administration—reactions ranged from slight confusion to rote dismissiveness. “The Obama Presidential Library That Isn’t” led the coverage in The New York Times. Philip Terzian complained in an op-ed in the Washington Examiner that what was proposed was “not, in fact, a library at all.”

https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2019/04/obamas-presidential-library-should-be-digital-first/586693/


Shh, No Roaring! When A Lion Lived In The Downtown Milwaukee Library Building

"In the file of "truth is stranger than fiction," the Milwaukee downtown library was once home to a lion cub. While it seems fantastical, he lived there back when the library shared a building with the Milwaukee Public Museum."

https://www.wuwm.com/post/shh-no-roaring-when-lion-lived-downtown-milwaukee-library-building#stream/0

Privacy

How Capitalism Betrayed Privacy

"For much of human history, what we now call “privacy” was better known as being rich. Privacy, like wealth, was something that most people had little or none of. Farmers, slaves and serfs resided in simple dwellings, usually with other people, sometimes even sharing space with animals. They had no expectation that a meaningful part of their lives would be unwatchable or otherwise off limits to others. That would have required homes with private rooms. And only rich people had those."

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/10/opinion/sunday/privacy-capitalism.html

 

What e-books at the library mean for your privacy

"Back in 1995, printing company Quad/Graphics didn't let its employees in Saratoga, New York, access the internet. But that didn't stop the workers from figuring out a way to get online during business hours.

The employees dialed long distance -- that was a thing back then -- to a free dial-up internet service called Libraries Without Walls that was offered through the Southern Adirondack Library System and used their library cards to log on. Over a span of 18 months, they surfed a total of 1,770 hours and racked up $23,000 in phone bills."

https://www.cnet.com/news/what-e-books-at-the-library-mean-for-your-privacy/


Technology

Congress wants to protect you from biased algorithms, deepfakes, and other bad AI

"On Wednesday, US lawmakers introduced a new bill that represents one of the country’s first major efforts to regulate AI. There are likely to be more to come."

https://www.technologyreview.com/s/613310/congress-wants-to-protect-you-from-biased-algorithms-deepfakes-and-other-bad-ai/

 

The First Machine-Generated Book by a Scholarly Publisher Is a Boring Read

"Amazon’s online book store is plagued with thousands of auto-generated ebooks crudely hacked together from other texts by shady authors” looking to make a quick buck. Most are unreadable, but it’s not always going to be that way. Springer Nature, a publisher serving the research community, just published its first book that was generated by an algorithm using machine learning. It’s no Stephen King page-turner, but that’s not why this book was created."

https://gizmodo.com/the-first-machine-generated-book-by-a-scholarly-publish-1833914900

Intersect Alert - April 8, 2019

Internet Access

Net Neutrality Bill Passes Crucial Committee Vote

"Congress took a big step today toward protecting net neutrality, competition, and privacy for Internet users. The House Energy and Commerce Committee just voted 30-22 to approve an amended version of the Save the Internet Act of 2019 (H.R.1644). "

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2019/04/net-neutrality-bill-passes-crucial-committee-vote


Libraries

Boston Public Library’s 78rpm Records Come to the Internet

“Following eighteen months of work, more than 50,000 78rpm record “sides” from the Boston Public Library’s sound archives have now been digitized and made freely available online by the Internet Archive. ”

https://www.bespacific.com/netherlands-makes-trains-free-on-national-book-day/https://www.bespacific.com/netherlands-makes-trains-free-on-national-book-day/


Netherlands makes trains free on national book day

“Dutch book lovers got free rail travel across their country’s entire network this weekend as part of the Netherlands’ annual book week celebrations. Every year since 1932 the Netherlands has encouraged reading with Boekenweek – a celebration of literature marked with literary festivals and book signings across the country. Traditionally, a well-known Dutch author writes a special novel – the “book week gift” or Boekenweekgeschenk – which is given out for free to people who buy books during the festivities or sign up to a library. But the special book – this year the novel Jas Van Belofte by celebrated author Jan Siebelink, can also be presented instead of a rail ticket on every train in the country on the Sunday of book week. Nederlandse Spoorwegen (NS), the Dutch state railway company, has long been a sponsor of the annual festivities – and even organises book readings signings by top authors on its trains…”

https://www.bespacific.com/netherlands-makes-trains-free-on-national-book-day/https://www.bespacific.com/netherlands-makes-trains-free-on-national-book-day/


Washington Department of Corrections Quietly Bans Book Donations to Prisoners From Nonprofits

"The Washington State Department of Corrections quietly rolled out a new policy via a memo on their website last month which disallows books to be donated to prisons via nonprofit organizations. So quietly, in fact, that one of the largest nonprofits that works to get donated materials to prisoners was taken by surprise to discover the change. They weren’t informed before it was implemented."

https://bookriot.com/2019/04/03/book-ban-in-washington-prisons


Open Access

Affordable College Textbook Act Reintroduced in Congress

"Today, US Senators Durbin (D-IL), King (I-ME), Smith (D-MN) and Sinema (D-AZ) and US Representative Neguse (D-CO) re-introduced the Affordable College Textbook Act. The bill would create a grant program to support projects on open textbooks. The current bill is largely similar to the version introduced in the last Congress with a few key changes including new language to improve accessibility of materials created under the bill for students with disabilities and amending the Higher Education Act to require publishers to disclose whether material is an open educational resource (OER)."

http://policynotes.arl.org/?p=1833


Paywalls block scientific progress. Research should be open for everyone

"Academic and scientific research needs to be accessible to all. The world’s most pressing problems like clean water or food security deserve to have as many people as possible solving their complexities. Yet our current academic research system has no interest in harnessing our collective intelligence. Scientific progress is currently thwarted by one thing: paywalls."

https://www.theguardian.com/education/2019/mar/28/paywalls-block-scientific-progress-research-should-be-open-to-everyone

Intersect Alert - April 1, 2019

Books and Reading

Reading to Your Toddler? Print Books Are Better Than Digital Ones

"As a supporter of reading with children and a fan of traditional print books, I cannot say I am entirely surprised by the results of new research suggesting that print books are the best way to go when reading with young children."
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/03/25/well/family/reading-to-your-toddler-print-books-are-better-than-digital-ones.html

Libraries

National Archives Presents Rare Chance to View NATO Treaty

"In honor of the 70th anniversary of the signing of the North Atlantic Treaty and the upcoming North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) summit in Washington, DC, the National Archives will display the landmark document in its museum through April 2, 2019."
https://www.archives.gov/news/articles/national-archives-presents-rare-chance-to-view-nato-treaty

You can now grab a fancy cocktail at the Boston Public Library

"Now you can order a cocktail with that free book.
The Boston Public Library in Copley Square on Wednesday is opening its revamped Map Room cafe as a tea lounge, complete with bar seating and specialty drinks wittily named after literary greats."
https://www.bostonglobe.com/lifestyle/food-dining/2019/03/19/you-can-now-grab-fancy-cocktail-boston-public-library/ODO2Jg7MC0umgSGtHvdKPL/story.html

Privacy

Consumer Data Protection: Action Needed to Strengthen Oversight of Consumer Reporting Agencies

“In 2017, a breach at Equifax, one of the largest companies, compromised at least 145.5 million consumers’ data. “Consumers have little control over what information these companies have, so federal oversight is important—and it could be improved. For example, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau doesn’t routinely consider data security risk when prioritizing its company examinations. This testimony is based on a report in which we recommended improving federal enforcement of data safeguards and oversight of company security practices.”
https://www.gao.gov/assets/700/697893.pdf

A DNA Company Wants You to Help Catch Criminals

“Give us your DNA. Help catch a criminal. That’s the message of a recent ad from the genetic-testing company Family Tree DNA. The video stars Ed Smart, whose daughter Elizabeth Smart was abducted at age 14, exhorting viewers to upload their DNA profiles to the company’s website.

Not so long ago, DNA-testing companies were known only for their promise to unlock medical secrets or trace family histories. What’s changed is the arrest of the alleged Golden State Killer. Since police tracked down a suspect in the notorious case by uploading crime-scene DNA and finding distant relatives on a genealogy website, the same technique has led to dozens more arrests for rapes and murders. Forensic genealogy has become, if not exactly routine, very much normalized.”
https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2019/03/a-dna-company-wants-your-dna-to-catch-criminals/586120/

Trading privacy for survival is another tax on the poor

"In 1969, a woman named Barbara James walked into a neighborhood legal services office in New York City in search of help to fight the city’s home visit policy. Her case worker had told her that if she wanted welfare benefits for her and her 2-year-old son Maurice, she would have to allow a home visit as part of the welfare verification process. James didn’t want officials searching her home, and offered instead to provide documentation to demonstrate her eligibility. Her refusal eventually led the city to terminate her benefits."
https://www.fastcompany.com/90317495/another-tax-on-the-poor-surrendering-privacy-for-survival

Technology

Europe's copyright dispute shows just how hard it is to fix the internet's problems

"The EU has just passed the Copyright Directive: now small sites and tech giants alike will have to deal with the fallout and recriminations."
https://www.technologyreview.com/s/613204/europes-copyright-row-shows-just-how-hard-it-is-to-fix-the-internets-problems/

Intersect Alert - March 18, 2019

Libraries

The Secret Service Uses This Massive Ink Library to Catch Forged Documents

"You might know that the Secret Service is on guard against counterfeit currency. You might not know, however, that it also keeps a one-of-a-kind International Ink Library with more than 11,400 specific writing ink fingerprints on hand. The ink library handles a variety of cases, from threat letters — the Secret Service protects not only the President but also other high-profile government officials — and ransom letters, baseballs, and phony documents where someone is 'trying to obscure the truth in some way,' says Joseph Stephens, ink library document analyst." https://www.popularmechanics.com/technology/news/a13875/secret-service-ink-forensics-library/

Medieval Masterpiece the Book of Kells, Is Now Digitized & Put Online

"In our digital age, you need not go to Dublin to see this fabulous historical artifact, or a digitization of it at least, entirely viewable at the online collections of the Trinity College Library. The pages, originally captured in 1990, “have recently been rescanned,” Trinity College Library writes, using state of the art imaging technology. These new digital images offer the most accurate high resolution images to date, providing an experience second only to viewing the book in person.”

http://www.openculture.com/2019/03/the-medieval-masterpiece-the-book-of-kells-is-now-digitized-put-online.html

Internet Users

The mass shooting in New Zealand shows how broken social media is

"A gunman live-streamed the murder of dozens of innocents in two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, on Friday—and the world got a terrible reminder of how flawed existing social-media policies and algorithms are for policing violent and offensive content."

https://www.technologyreview.com/the-download/613132/the-mass-shooting-in-new-zealand-shows-how-broken-social-media-is/

Values

Umberto Eco: 'We Like Lists Because We Don't Want to Die'

"The list is the origin of culture. It's part of the history of art and literature. What does culture want? To make infinity comprehensible. It also wants to create order -- not always, but often. And how, as a human being, does one face infinity? How does one attempt to grasp the incomprehensible? Through lists, through catalogs, through collections in museums and through encyclopedias and dictionaries. "

http://www.spiegel.de/international/zeitgeist/spiegel-interview-with-umberto-eco-we-like-lists-because-we-don-t-want-to-die-a-659577.html

Digital Preservation

A new way to track Web censorship under Trump: Gov404

"The Web Integrity Project’s Censorship Tracker aggregates and verifies examples of the most significant cases of online information censorship on the federal Web since November 2016. The cases come from reporting by the Web Integrity Project (WIP) team, the news media, and other accountability organizations. "

https://sunlightfoundation.com/gov404/

Privacy

People’s online photos are being used without consent to train face recognition AI

"In January IBM released a data set of almost a million photos that had been scraped from photo-sharing website Flickr then annotated with information about details like skin tone. The company pitched this as part of efforts to reduce the (very real) problem of bias within face recognition. However, it didn’t get consent from anyone to do this, and it’s almost impossible to get the photos removed. " https://www.technologyreview.com/the-download/613118/peoples-online-photos-are-being-used-without-consent-to-train-face-recognition/

Why the Debate Over Privacy Can't Rely on Tech Giants

"In his opening statement, CEO and Founder of DuckDuckGo Gabriel Weinberg said that, “Privacy legislation is not anti-advertising…[our] ads won’t follow [the user] around, because we don’t know who you are, where you’ve been, or where you go. It’s contextual advertising versus behavioral advertising.” Press investigations have exposed, time and again, that large tech companies will often choose their profits over your privacy. This underscores the need for stronger privacy laws across the country, and it helps to have another tech CEO tell the Senate that well-drafted privacy legislation can spur more competition and innovation." https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2019/03/why-debate-over-privacy-cant-rely-tech-giants

Technology

How voice computing will transform the way we live, work and think

"The move toward one-shot answers has been just slow enough to obscure its own most important consequence: killing off the internet as we know it. The conventional web, with all of its tedious pages and links, is giving way to the conversational web, in which chatty AIs reign supreme. The payoff, we are told, is increased convenience and efficiency. But for everyone who has economic interests tied to traditional web search—businesses, advertisers, authors, publishers, the tech giants—the situation is perilous. "

https://www.wired.com/story/amazon-alexa-search-for-the-one-perfect-answer/

Googling Strangers: One Professor's Lesson On Privacy In Public Spaces

"Whether you're in a cheering stadium or a packed commuter train, it's easy to assume that no one is paying attention to you. And before smartphones, even if someone overheard your conversation, they'd usually have a hard time piecing together whatever information they gathered. The level of effort required to get a complete picture of your identity would, effectively, serve as a deterrent and a privacy protection.

Not anymore. With Google at our fingertips, it's increasingly easyto learn a lot about a stranger, even with just a few details."

https://www.npr.org/2019/03/10/702028545/googling-strangers-one-professors-lesson-on-privacy-in-public-spaces

How library professionals are approaching blockchain technology and its potential impact

"What a particular librarian or library worker needs to know about blockchain technology is incredibly context-dependent; answering reference questions about Bitcoin requires an entirely different breadth and depth of knowledge from making decisions about a blockchain implementation to manage interlibrary loans. That said, as information professionals, everyone in the library world should have familiarity with what blockchain is because it’s likely to become increasingly common in spaces where parties have low trust but still want to cooperate. Perhaps the most important thing to know is that no one’s word in the blockchain space is gospel. Because this is such a new, evolving technology, we haven’t even agreed on what a blockchain is yet."
https://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/2019/03/01/library-blockchain-reaction/

Intersect Alert - March 11, 2019

Technology:

Elizabeth Warren says it’s time to break up Big Tech

The US presidential hopeful claims companies like Facebook and Amazon have become too powerful—and that it’s time to blow up their empires.

The great divide: In a blog post, Warren, a Democratic senator from Massachusetts, said that if she wins office in 2020, she’s going to push for legislation that labels companies running online marketplaces with revenue of $25 billion or more as “platform utilities.” These utilities would be forbidden from competing with companies that use their platforms to reach customers.

https://www.technologyreview.com/the-download/613096/elizabeth-warren-says-its-time-to-break-up-big-tech/

Automation: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO)

Automation often seems like a scary new problem, but it’s neither entirely scary nor entirely new.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_h1ooyyFkF0

Research:

Extensive catalogue of CNN films, documentaries, interviews and content added to Academic Video Online

More than 450 documentaries, interviews and special films originally released by CNN are now available to academic libraries through the Academic Video Online streaming video collection, marking the first time CNN content is available in a video database for the library market.

Many more CNN titles will be added in the coming years under this licensing agreement with CNN International Commercial (CNNIC). Like most content in Academic Video Online, the CNN films can be viewed and used worldwide.

https://librarytechnology.org/pr/24105

Values:

The Inextricable Link Between Modern Free Speech Law and the Civil Rights Movement

No excuse is needed to celebrate the civil rights icon Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth. But this weekend is an especially appropriate time to recognize his contributions to First Amendment jurisprudence, and the inextricable link between modern free speech law and the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s. This link remains pertinent: the Internet is as important a venue for protest and dissent as streets and newspapers were then, especially in light of recent attacks on this legal legacy.

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2019/03/inextricable-link-between-modern-free-speech-law-and-civil-rights-movement

Intellectual Property:

Copyright at the Supreme Court

This week, the Supreme Court issued two unanimous decisions related to copyright. Although neither is likely to reshape the world of copyright, the Court’s opinions should at least provide more certainty for copyright litigants in the future.


https://cdt.org/blog/copyright-at-the-supreme-court/

Copyright Office Adds 24 Million Images to Virtual Card Catalog Proof of Concept

“The Copyright Office updated the Virtual Card Catalog (VCC) proof of concept yesterday with more than 24 million card images from 1870 through 1954. These images contain Copyright Registrations, Assignments, Notices of Use, Commercial Prints and Labels, Title Indexes, and Pseudonym Files. The addition of these card images expands the range of card images from 1870 through 1977, totaling more than 41 million card images. The Office welcomes the public to browse the newly added indexes and provide feedback through the Virtual Card Catalog website at vcc.copyright.gov.”


https://www.bespacific.com/copyright-office-adds-24-million-images-to-virtual-card-catalog-proof-of-concept/

Open Access:

Plan S and the UC-Elsevier negotiations—publication as part of research funding

The first quarter of 2019 is replete with open access significance—from the public comment filings on Plan S, to the news last week that the University of California canceled its system-wide subscription to Elsevier journals over the company’s unwillingness to meet a set of faculty-endorsed principles of scholarly communication. The full set of principles is a magnificent document, made all the more powerful as an expression of faculty and senior university administration will. But one aspect in particular marks a noteworthy shift within the research community—a recognition that fully funding research ought to include the open dissemination of that research. Plan S was conceived by a group of national research councils. The UC proposed agreement included an explicit commitment on the part of the university to fund open dissemination of research (through publishing fees) when external funding isn’t present.
http://policynotes.arl.org/?p=1827



Intersect Alert – March 4, 2019

Values

If the map becomes the territory then we will be lost


"Many publishers – including Wiley, Taylor and Francis, IEEE, and IOP – already use a third party manuscript service called ScholarOne. ScholarOne integrates the iThenticate service which produces reports of what percentage of a manuscript has already been published. Journal editors have the option to set what extent a paper can make use of a researcher’s prior work, including their thesis. Manuscripts that exceed these set thresholds can be automatically rejected without human interjection from the editor. We are only just starting to understand how this workflow is going to impact the willingness of young scholars to make their theses and dissertations open access."

https://librarian.aedileworks.com/2019/03/03/if-the-map-becomes-the-territory-then-we-will-be-lost/

Bill To Bring Libraries To NYC Jails Faces Opposition From The Correction Department

"On Tuesday, the City Council’s Criminal Justice Committee heard testimony on Council member Daniel Dromm’s bill, Int. 1184, that requires the Department of Correction to provide access to the library for all incarcerated people within 48 hours of entering the jail system. The Department would be required to report on the number of books they receive, the source of those books and, if books are censored, the reason for the censorship."
http://gothamist.com/2019/02/27/nyc_jails_books.php

Privacy

"The first complete human genome sequence was published in 2003, after a 13-year international effort that involved hundreds of researchers and cost $2.7 billion. Since then, sequencing technology has gotten faster and much less costly. At the same time, the advent of supercomputing centers that can analyze and compare millions of genomes has turned the mountain of raw genomic data into a motherlode of invaluable information. National agencies, huge corporations, and tiny startups all are vying to amass the biggest and best collections of genomes and discover their marketable secrets. In 2017, investment in genomics businesses topped $3" billion.https://news.psu.edu/story/560655/2019/02/26/research/whose-genes-are-they-anyway

Archives

Canadian province digitizing centuries-old trading post records to mark Manitoba 150

"The Hudson’s Bay Company Archives (HBCA), which is part of the Archives of Manitoba, is getting help from The Hudson’s Bay Company History Foundation for a mass digitization project, one of the first Manitoba 150 projects.

HBCA is digitizing over 1000 reels of microfilm copies of pre-1870 trading post records, making them available to the world online.

The records include post journals, accounts and district reports that provide information about the history of the fur trade, North American exploration and the development of Canada as a country.

“They provide a real snapshot into life here in Canada hundreds of years ago. You can get a real sense of Indigenous voice for example and these records continue to be used for land tenor rights and hunting rights even today," said Quarry."
https://winnipeg.ctvnews.ca/province-digitizing-centuries-old-trading-post-records-to-mark-manitoba-150-1.4317365

Research

Research Tool: American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) State Immunization Information System

"The AAFP has developed a web-based map that displays immunization rates and exemption laws in all 50 states, D.C., Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, and Guam. In addition, our searchable IIS Registry database provides state-by-state regulations for immunization registries across the U.S. These tools provide immunization data that can help family physicians identify populations that may be at risk of vaccine-preventable diseases like measles and pertussis (whooping cough), determine what additional resources and/or programs are needed to increase immunization rates, determine how immunization exemptions affect their state immunization rates, and advocate for stronger immunization legislation in their communities."
https://www.aafp.org/patient-care/public-health/immunizations/registry.html

Freedom of Information

Deloitte Launches FOIA-Processing Software

"One of FOIA’s perennial head-scratchers is why agency FOIA offices seem able to search for and review only hundreds of pages of documents a month for release – even when under court order – when existing eDiscovery tools allow lawyers to review tens of thousands of pages of records in a comparable amount of time. Deloitte has launched a new FOIA-processing software based on eDiscovery tools for its government clients as a possible solution to this imbalance."

https://unredacted.com/2019/02/28/deloitte-launches-foia-processing-software-foia-shows-interior-dept-issued-thousands-of-oil-drilling-safety-waivers-and-more-frinformsum-2-28-2019/


Intersect Alert February 24, 2019

Archives:

Online Oral Histories of the Manhattan Project

“’Voices of the Manhattan Project’ is a joint project by the Atomic Heritage Foundation and the Los Alamos Historical Society to create a public archive of our oral history collections of Manhattan Project veterans and their families. The Manhattan Project was a great human collaboration. Participants included recent immigrants who fled anti-Semitism in Europe, young men and women straight from high school or college, and numerous Hispanics, Native Americans, and African-Americans. Some 125,000 people worked in secret locations in communities developed by the government for the sole purpose of the project. Most surprisingly, very few knew that they were working on an atomic bomb.”

“Launched in October 2012, this website captures the stories of Manhattan Project veterans and their families. Thanks to grants from the Crystal Trust, Department of Energy-NNSA, Institute of Museum and Library Services, the Kerr Foundation, and the M. J. Murdock Charitable Trust, the Atomic Heritage Foundation and the Los Alamos Historical Society are digitizing and transcribing our oral history collections and adding the interviews to this website. We hope that in time others will add to these oral histories. Our goal is to provide a sense of both the commonality and diversity of the Manhattan Project experience for scholars, students and the public. There are many ways to search this site. In addition to the search bar and the filters used to organize by location and subjects (which are intended to emphasize important themes), you can also click on ‘tags’ to find out more about a specific topic on the oral history and location pages. For example, the location page for Metallurgical Laboratory includes a tag for Enrico Fermi. Click on the tag, and all the key pages on this website discussing Fermi will pop up…”

https://www.manhattanprojectvoices.org/oral-histories/


How Do You Preserve History On The Moon? : NPR

“Historic preservationists are hoping that the upcoming 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing this summer will persuade the United Nations to do something to protect Neil Armstrong's footprints in the lunar dust. Some of his boot marks are still up there, after all, along with other precious artifacts from humanity's first steps on another world. Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin left behind tools and science equipment, a plaque that read, "We came in peace for all mankind," and the U.S. flag, which has likely been bleached white by five decades of harsh ultraviolet light.”

https://www.npr.org/2019/02/21/696129505/how-do-you-preserve-history-on-the-moon

 

 

Libraries:

Drag queen story hour in America's Bible Belt

Drag queen story hours - events where drag performers read to children - are moving out of the big cities and coming to conservative southern US states.

A group of drag queens stand in a small room at the back of a public library in South Carolina, their bright outfits in contrast with the beige walls.

Children file in and quickly scan the larger-than-life characters before turning their attention to running around and playing.

"There are five drag queens walking around this room and not one kid has walked up to us and said 'you're so weird'," says drag queen Rylee Hunty. "Kids exist in their own fantasy world and we fit into that."

The children assemble on the floor in front of Rylee as she starts to read. After a page or so, she is interrupted by a young girl who stands up and offers Rylee her bracelet because she's "a princess".

Outside the library, armed police watch over groups of protesters and counter-protesters chanting at each other in the rain. Each side representing a different view of the future of the American South.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-47203976


Obama Library to Depart From Status Quo, Signs of Life for Central FOIA Portal, and More: FRINFORMSUM 2/21/2019

For Better or Worse, The Obama Library to Depart From Status Quo

“The National Archives and Records Administration has released its agreement with the Obama Foundation that outlines how the Foundation’s plan to depart from the traditional NARA-run presidential library model – in favor of digitizing all of Obama’s 30 million unclassified paper records – will comply with the Presidential Records Act.”

“While all of Obama’s unclassified documents will be released through both the New Obama Library website and the NARA catalog, there will be no research library on site. This change has prompted concerns that presidential scholarship may suffer, and begs questions about what this model could mean for future presidents unconcerned with preserving ‘nonpartisan public history,’ according to the New York Times.”

https://unredacted.com/2019/02/21/obama-library-to-depart-from-status-quo-signs-of-life-for-central-foia-portal-and-more-frinformsum-2-21-2019/

 

 

Books and Reading:

'I can't even look at the cover': the most disturbing books

From hiding from a copy of The Exorcist to being unnerved by the likes of Shirley Jackson, Stephen King and Iain Banks, here are The Guardian Reader's most alarming reading experiences

https://www.theguardian.com/books/booksblog/2019/feb/21/i-cant-even-look-at-the-cover-the-most-disturbing-books


How to Read 80ish Books a Year (And Actually Remember Them)

Reading is a skill that once you’ve learned, you probably don’t spend much time trying to get better at. (Not all that different from, say, breathing.) And yet, many of us don’t have to look far to see signs that there’s plenty of room for improvement. We only read at the end of the day—and only for the three minutes between cracking open a book and falling asleep. We’re halfway through about nine books. And our bookshelves are littered with titles that we remember reading but don’t exactly remember anything about.

https://www.gq.com/story/how-to-read-good

 

Research:

The Stanford Open Policing Project

“Currently, a comprehensive, national repository detailing interactions between police and the public doesn’t exist. That’s why the Stanford Open Policing Project is collecting and standardizing data on vehicle and pedestrian stops from law enforcement departments across the country — and we’re making that information freely available. We’ve already gathered 130 million records from 31 state police agencies and have begun collecting data on stops from law enforcement agencies in major cities, as well. We, the Stanford Open Policing Project, are an interdisciplinary team of researchers and journalists at Stanford University. We are committed to combining the academic rigor of statistical analysis with the explanatory power of data journalism.”

 

https://openpolicing.stanford.edu/

 

What’s the Weather Like on Mars? NASA has a site for that

Weather Report at Elysium Planitia – “This plot is being updated daily throughout the duration of the InSight mission. The plot shows the latest three sols (Martian days) of weather data at InSight’s landing site near the equator of Mars. Time runs along the bottom of the plot with the most recent data at the right. Numbers along the bottom show hours of local time at the InSight lander (Local True Solar Time, based on Sun angle). Lighter and darker vertical bands indicate daytime and nighttime at the lander, respectively. The corresponding Earth time is also shown at the top of the plot, in Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). All data points are one-hour averages of the calibrated data from the spacecraft.”

https://mars.nasa.gov/insight/weather/

 

Please feel free to pass along in part or in its entirety; attribution appreciated.

The Intersect Alert is a newsletter of the Communications Committee, San Francisco Bay Area Chapter, Special Libraries Association.

Intersect Alert February 17, 2019

Public Policy:

A Look at Past and Future Climate Change in Less Than a Minute

Two new videos visualize how drastically global temperatures have changed since 1900 — and how much worse they will get by the end of this century. The data visualizations, created by Antti Lipponen, a research scientist at the Finnish Meteorological Institute, depict 200 years of climate change in each of the world’s 191 countries in less than a minute.

"'Rapid global warming really exists, has been global in the past, and has affected all the countries in the world,' Lipponen told Yale Environment 360. “Unfortunately, the future does not look different — temperatures will continue rising rapidly and all countries will be affected by climate change.'"

https://e360.yale.edu/digest/a-look-at-past-and-future-climate-change-in-less-than-a-minute

National Emergencies: Constitutional and Statutory Restrictions on Presidential Powers

"When a president threatens to exercise the power to declare a national emergency, our system of checks and balances faces a crucial test. With President Trump threatening such a declaration in order to build his proposed physical border wall, that test could be an important one that could quickly implicate your right to privacy and a transparent government."

"EFF has long tangled with governmental actions rooted in presidential power. From mass telephone records collection to tapping the Internet backbone, and from Internet metadata collection to biometric tracking and social media monitoring, claims of national crisis have often enabled digital policies that have undermined civil liberties. Those policies quickly spread far beyond their initial justification. We have also seen presidential authorities misused to avoid the legislative process—and even used to try to intimidate courts and prevent them from doing their job to protect our rights."

"So when the President threatens to use those same emergency authorities to try paying for a border wall after Congress has refused, we watch closely. And so should you."

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2019/02/national-emergencies-constitutional-and-statutory-restrictions-presidential-powers

Open Access:

Public Knowledge Applauds Bill Eliminating Paywalls from Public Court Records Access

"Yesterday, Representatives Doug Collins (R-GA) and Mike Quigley (D-IL) introduced the 'Electronic Court Records Reform Act' (ECRRA) to remove any and all paywalls on public court records. Currently, users must pay to obtain public court records through the Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER) system. The ECRRA would guarantee free public access to these records through PACER by waiving all fees. Furthermore, the bill would also mandate updates to the PACER system, including a search function for court documents."

https://www.publicknowledge.org/press-release/public-knowledge-applauds-bill-eliminating-paywalls-from-public-court-records-access#When:17:58:00Z

Technology:

The Secret History of Women in Coding

"Computer programming once had much better gender balance than it does today. What went wrong?"

"As a teenager in Maryland in the 1950s, Mary Allen Wilkes had no plans to become a software pioneer — she dreamed of being a litigator. One day in junior high in 1950, though, her geography teacher surprised her with a comment: “Mary Allen, when you grow up, you should be a computer programmer!” Wilkes had no idea what a programmer was; she wasn’t even sure what a computer was. Relatively few Americans were. The first digital computers had been built barely a decade earlier at universities and in government labs."

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/02/13/magazine/women-coding-computer-programming.html

The technology behind OpenAI’s fiction-writing, fake-news-spewing AI, explained - MIT Technology Review

The language model can write like a human, but it doesn’t have a clue what it’s saying.

Last Thursday (Feb. 14), the nonprofit research firm OpenAI released a new language model capable of generating convincing passages of prose. So convincing, in fact, that the researchers have refrained from open-sourcing the code, in hopes of stalling its potential weaponization as a means of mass-producing fake news.

https://www.technologyreview.com/s/612975/ai-natural-language-processing-explained/

We should gene-sequence cave paintings to find out more about who made them

Standard archeological techniques can’t determine whether the prehistoric artists were hunter-gatherers or farmers. Analyzing the paintings’ surfaces with techniques from biology offers much more information about howStandard archeological techniques can’t determine whether the prehistoric artists were hunter-gatherers or farmers. Analyzing the paintings’ surfaces with techniques from biology offers much more information about how they worked and when they lived. they worked and when they lived.

https://www.technologyreview.com/s/612918/we-should-gene-sequence-cave-paintings-to-find-out-more-about-who-made-them/

Machine learning is contributing to a “reproducibility crisis” within science

Scientific discoveries made using machine learning techniques cannot be automatically trusted, a statistician from Rice University has warned.

https://www.technologyreview.com/the-download/612982/machine-learning-is-contributing-to-a-reproducibility-crisis-within-science/

Please feel free to pass along in part or in its entirety; attribution appreciated.

The Intersect Alert is a newsletter of the Communications Committee, San Francisco Bay Area Chapter, Special Libraries Association.

Intersect Alert February 10, 2019

Archives:

First African American Congresswoman Featured at National Archives

WASHINGTON, February 8, 2019 — “The life and contributions of Shirley Chisholm—the first African American woman elected to Congress—will be celebrated this month at the National Archives and Records Administration.”

“A new ‘Featured Document’ display at the National Archives Museum in the East Rotunda Gallery marks the 50th anniversary of Shirley Chisholm’s historic entry into the U.S. House of Representatives. The display features her oath of office and a record from her service on the House Rules Committee.”

https://www.archives.gov/news/articles/first-african-american-congresswoman-featured

Open Access:

Thousands of scientists run up against Elsevier’s paywall

"Researchers at German institutions that have let their Elsevier subscriptions lapse while negotiating a new deal are hitting the paywall for the publisher’s most recent articles around 10,000 times a day, according to Elsevier — which publishes more than 400,000 papers each year. But at least some German libraries involved in negotiating access to Elsevier say they are making huge savings without a subscription, while still providing any articles their academics request."

https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-019-00492-4

Research:

Think with Google

“We know how important it is for marketers to have their pulse on the latest consumer insights and industry trends. To help you easily stay up-to-date we organized hundreds of Google insights and facts by industry, platform, and theme. Search through to find inspiration, or the perfect insight to power your thinking. Insight cards are shareable and downloadable, so you can easily use in a presentation, or send as inspiration to your colleagues…”

“Digital innovation continues to propel the marketing industry forward, and the pace is mind-blowing. As marketers, we rely on data, analysis, and insights to stay informed and inspired. Think with Google is our way to share all of this and more with you. Think of us as your resource for everything from high-level insights to deck-ready stats to useful tools. Here you will find the data we’re exploring and the trends we’re tracking along with forward-looking perspectives and behind-the-scenes looks at digital campaigns—across industries, platforms, and audiences. We hope you find it helpful and visit often.”

https://www.bespacific.com/think-with-google/

Technology:

Trump has a plan to keep America first in artificial intelligence

“Artificial intelligence may have been invented in the United States, but other nations, including China, Canada, and France, have made bigger moves to back and benefit from the technology in recent years.” “President Donald Trump will seek to change that Monday by signing an executive order that launches the US government’s own AI play.” “The key focuses of the “American AI Initiative” have been released ahead of time by the Office of Science and Technology Policy.”

“The initiative is designed to boost America’s AI industry by reallocating funding, creating new resources, and devising ways for the country to shape the technology even as it becomes increasingly global.” “However, while the goals are lofty, the details are vague. And it will not include a big lump sum of funding for AI research.”

https://www.technologyreview.com/s/612926/trump-will-sign-an-executive-order-to-put-america-first-in-artificial-intelligence/

Libraries & Privacy:

New Library Bill of Rights Provision Recognizes and Defends Library Users’ Privacy

"The Library Bill of Rights — first adopted in 1939 and last amended in 1980 — has been updated to include an article focused on the concept of ensuring privacy and confidentiality for library users."

"The new article of the Library Bill of Rights, Article VII, states: ‘All people, regardless of origin, age, background, or views, possess a right to privacy and confidentiality in their library use. Libraries should advocate for, educate about, and protect people’s privacy, safeguarding all library use data, including personally identifiable information.'

'Libraries across the nation now have the support needed to protect and fight for the privacy rights of their patrons,' said Erin Berman, chair of the Intellectual Freedom Committee's Privacy Subcommittee and co-leader of the working group that drafted the new article. “They may use the privacy article to update policies and practices, bringing the new article to governing bodies, vendors, funders and their patrons.'"

"Helen Adams, an IFC member and co-leader of the working group, commended the working group and those who contributed to the privacy article. She also noted the article’s significance to school libraries.

'With the addition of Article VII, students in K-12 public schools are promised the right of privacy and confidentiality in their library use,' said Adams. 'Adding the core values of privacy and confidentiality to one of the profession’s foundational documents places school librarians in a stronger position from which to advocate for and educate about library privacy for minors.'"

http://www.ala.org/news/press-releases/2019/02/new-library-bill-rights-provision-recognizes-and-defends-library-users

Freedom of Information:

State Department Makes FOIA Reading Room Less User-Friendly

"The Department of State has inexplicably made its FOIA reading room significantly less user-friendly. The previous version allowed researchers to sort the reading room’s tens of thousands of documents by date or title, among other filters, or search through curated collections. The current iteration has no such features and the documents are now unsortable. The move is a frustrating head-scratcher from an agency that – until recently – had one of the best examples of the kind of FOIA reading room that is required by 2007 FOIA amendments. The change shows, as Alex Howard points out on Twitter, 'how technical changes to searchability can degrade public access & impeding the public’s rights to know.'"

State Department Makes FOIA Reading Room Less User-Friendly: FRINFORMSUM 2/7/2019

Please feel free to pass along in part or in its entirety; attribution appreciated.

The Intersect Alert is a newsletter of the Communications Committee, San Francisco Bay Area Chapter, Special Libraries Association.

Intersect Alert February 3, 2019

Values:

A Design to Bring Life to Death

"NYT Special tribute to extraordinary black men, women who were left out of obituaries when they died."

"A special section in the Sunday paper paid tribute to extraordinary black men and women who were left out of The Times’s obituaries when they died. Its design aims to bring joy to readers. Andrew Sondern: “Death is not often a cause for joy. But a special edition of Overlooked, which tells the stories of a dozen extraordinary black men and women who were left out of The Times’s obituary pages when they died, is a reason to celebrate.” “I designed the print edition of the project, which marks the arrival of Black History Month with a special section in Sunday’s newspaper. These obituaries reanimate the legacies of the overlooked, so it was important that the design felt as joyful and respectful as the articles themselves.”

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/02/02/reader-center/overlooked-obituaries-news-design.html

Internet Access:

Why Won’t This Page Load? Net Neutrality Hits the DC Circuit

"The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit heard oral arguments today determining whether the FCC was wrong to eliminate its own rules protecting an open internet. In a lively panel, Judges Millet, Wilkens, and Williams jumped in with questions less than a minute into the case, and kept all six advocates at the podium for wide ranging questions taking more than five hours to complete – almost double the allotted time for this case."

https://cdt.org/blog/why-wont-this-page-load-net-neutrality-hits-the-dc-circuit/

Research:

Attacking a Pay Wall That Hides Public Court Filings The New York Times

The New York Times: “The federal judiciary has built an imposing pay wall around its court filings, charging a preposterous 10 cents a page for electronic access to what are meant to be public records. A pending lawsuit could help tear that wall down. The costs of storing and transmitting data have plunged, approaching zero. By one estimate, the actual cost of retrieving court documents, including secure storage, is about one half of one ten-thousandth of a penny per page. But the federal judiciary charges a dime a page to use its service, called Pacer (for Public Access to Court Electronic Records). The National Veterans Legal Services Program and two other nonprofit groups filed a class action in 2016 seeking to recover what they said were systemic overcharges. “Excessive Pacer fees inhibit public understanding of the courts and thwart equal access to justice, erecting a financial barrier that many ordinary citizens are unable to clear,” they wrote. The suit accuses the judicial system of using the fees it charges as a kind of slush fund, spending the money to buy flat-screen televisions for jurors, to finance a study of the Mississippi court system and to send notices in bankruptcy proceedings”

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/02/04/us/politics/pacer-fees-lawsuit.html?partner=rss&emc=rss

Libraries:

Stanford Libraries’ transformative gift creates hub highlighting Silicon Valley history

"Stanford Libraries has received a $25 million gift from the Harold C. and Marilyn A. Hohbach Foundation to create a vibrant collections-centered research hub and endow the Silicon Valley Archives program. The first floor of the East Wing of the Cecil H. Green Library will be renovated and re-named Hohbach Hall. The newly renovated space in the East Wing of the Cecil H. Green Library will be named Hohbach Hall and will include a new Special Collections classroom, as well as spaces for group study, seminars, events and exhibitions."

https://news.stanford.edu/2019/01/31/stanford-libraries-transformative-gift-creates-hub-highlighting-silicon-valley-history/

The Relationship Between Publishers and Libraries

"Publishers and libraries need to recognize their shared responsibility to perpetuate the distribution of knowledge to researchers, academics, and students. Ultimately, this should be the top priority of any company and/or individual operating in this sphere. Of course, profit is paramount to the success of any business, but that should not come at the expense of libraries and education. Likewise, libraries must understand the commercial nature of resource provision and work with publishers to build a fruitful relationship for both parties."

http://www.infotoday.com/it/jan19/Rodenby--The-Relationship-Between-Publishers-and-Libraries.shtml

Privacy:

What We Should Learn From “Facebook Research”

“Once again, Facebook has broken the trust of its users—this time, through reportedly paying people to give up their privacy by installing an application that sucks up huge amounts of sensitive data, and explicitly sidestepping Apple's Enterprise Developer program rules. In doing so, the company has repeated several of the privacy-abusive practices that it’s been chastised for before. This underscores just how little the company has learned from a year of user complaints, privacy group criticisms, and Congressional hearings, and it emphasizes the need for legislators to pass new laws to protect the public.”

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2019/01/what-we-should-learn-facebook-research

Please feel free to pass along in part or in its entirety; attribution appreciated.

The Intersect Alert is a newsletter of the Communications Committee, San Francisco Bay Area Chapter, Special Libraries Association.

Intersect Alert January 28, 2019

Knowledge Management


10 x 10: 100 Insightful KM Resources

"I am very thankful for my colleagues in knowledge management (KM) and the knowledge they share."

"To express my gratitude, I am sharing ten categories of KM resources, each with ten links to useful sources of knowledge about the field. The ten resources in each category are recommended starting points for those who want to learn more about KM."

"Each category heading is linked to a more extensive list for greater exploration. I hope you will find this information helpful. If so, please share this article further, adding links to other resources you have used."

https://llrx.com/2019/01/10-x-10-100-insightful-km-resources/

Privacy


Survey: Few Americans Willing to Pay for Privacy

"Only one in four Americans want online services such as Facebook and Google to collect less of their data if it means they would have to start paying a monthly subscription fee, according to a new survey from the Center for Data Innovation."

"Few surveys of Internet users’ attitudes toward online privacy ask about such tradeoffs, so the Center probed Americans’ reactions to a series of likely consequences of reducing online data collection. The survey found that when potential tradeoffs were not part of the question approximately 80 percent of Americans agreed that they would like online services such as Facebook and Google to collect less of their data. But that support eroded when respondents considered these tradeoffs. For example, initial agreement dropped by 6 percentage points when respondents were asked whether they would like online services to collect less data even if it means seeing ads that are less useful. Support dropped by 27 percentage points when respondents considered whether they would like less data collection even if it means seeing more ads than before. And it dropped by 26 percentage points when respondents were asked whether they would like less data collection even if it means losing access to some features they use now. The largest drop in support (53 percentage points) came when respondents were asked whether they would like online services to collect less of their data even if it means paying a monthly subscription fee. Only 27 percent of respondents agreed with reducing data collection in that circumstance."

https://www.datainnovation.org/2019/01/survey-few-americans-willing-to-pay-for-privacy/

Copyright


Copyright and Visual Works: The Legal Landscape of Opportunities and Challenges

"The internet age has dramatically affected the lives and livelihoods of visual artists both positively and in ways that were not expected. Photographers, graphic artists, and illustrators have highlighted a growing list of issues in recent years, including whether copyright law adequately addresses the new challenges facing visual artists today. The Office has reviewed how certain visual works, particularly photographs, graphic artworks, and illustrations, are registered, monetized, and enforced under the Copyright Act. In April 2015, the Office sought commentary on the marketplace for these visual works, as well as observations regarding the obstacles that creators and users of visual works face when navigating the digital landscape. The Office’s resulting review builds upon previous studies and public inquiries in a number of areas, including small claims, orphan works, moral rights, section 512 notice and takedown, and overall Office modernization."

"The Copyright Office’s review both reinforces the importance of visual works to this nation and identifies common obstacles that Congress and the Office itself may be able to alleviate. A number of stakeholders, including photographers, graphic designers, illustrators, and licensees, raised specific issues they face on a regular basis regarding current copyright law and practices. These challenges fall within three general categories: (1) difficulties with the registration process; (2) challenges with licensing generally and monetizing visual works online; and (3) general enforcement obstacles."

https://www.copyright.gov/policy/visualworks/


Washington Post Tries to Take Down Parody Site Announcing Trump's Resignation

"If you were in Washington, D.C. last week, you had a chance to be one of the lucky recipients of a parody newspaper spoofing the Washington Post and crowing about the 'Unpresidented' flight of Donald Trump from the Oval Office as he abandoned the presidency. The spoof, created by activist group the Yes Men, is also visible on the website democracyawakensinaction.org."

"The Washington Post’s lawyers were not amused, calling the parody an act of trademark infringement and raising copyright threats. We have responded to explain why the parody is protected by the First Amendment and fair use law."

"Dated May 1, 2019, the parody features a series of increasingly unlikely articles, including a mea culpa by the media for Trump’s rise to power and a story pointing out that the paper’s date is several months in the future in case the reader missed it."

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2019/01/washington-post-tries-take-down-parody-site-announcing-trumps-resignation-0

Online Courses


400 Free Ivy League University Courses You Can Take Online in 2019

"The eight Ivy League schools are among the most prestigious colleges in the world. They include Brown, Harvard, Cornell, Princeton, Dartmouth, Yale, and Columbia universities, and the University of Pennsylvania."

"All eight schools place in the top fifteen of the US News and World Report 2017 national university rankings."

"These Ivy League schools are also highly selective and extremely hard to get into. But the good news is that all these universities now offer free online courses across multiple online course platforms."

"So far, they’ve created over 494 courses, of which around 396 are still active. Here’s a collection of all of them, split into courses in the following subjects: Computer Science, Business, Humanities, Social Sciences, Art & Design, Science, Health & Medicine, Data Science, Education & Teaching, Mathematics, Science, Engineering, Personal Development, and Programming."

https://qz.com/1514408/400-free-ivy-league-university-courses-you-can-take-online-in-2019/

International Outlook


Once Centers Of Soviet Propaganda, Moscow's Libraries Are Having A 'Loud' Revival

"The Chistye Prudy neighborhood is one of Moscow's liveliest, with restaurants and cafes clustered along a boulevard with a tram line and grand old apartment buildings."

"Before the bars fill up in the evenings, the neighborhood's most popular hangout is the Fyodor Dostoevsky Library, named for the 19th century Russian writer. While young people huddle over laptops as city traffic growls past the large windows in the main reading hall, a theater group is rehearsing a play in another room. A constant stream of visitors comes through the entrance, with the front door banging behind them."

https://www.npr.org/2019/01/21/685585591/once-centers-of-soviet-propaganda-moscows-libraries-are-having-a-loud-revival

Libraries


Minneapolis Central Library Opens Vinyl Listening Room to Share Collection

"Right now, thousands of vinyl records are stored in the third floor of the Minneapolis Central Library downtown."

"They’re not easy to find — the stacks are in a remote room, far from where patrons usually look for books, CDs and movies. But librarians are now beginning to bring the collection out, little by little, to the public."

"On Saturday, Hennepin County Library hosted the first event in its new 'Vinyl Revival' series, which aims to bring attention to the thriving audio format. Through June, artists will present vinyl-themed programming and curate records from the library’s stacks, many of which are the works of local musicians."

http://www.startribune.com/minneapolis-central-library-opens-vinyl-listening-room-to-share-collection/504603881/?fbclid=IwAR1OaqKcfcLB3Qv-k4NXspg8H9XXQYIJ6yEPYwbqQCeEELB0PR0PqEoLqi4


Please feel free to pass along in part or in its entirety; attribution appreciated. The Intersect Alert is a newsletter of the Communications Committee, San Francisco Bay Area Chapter, Special Libraries Association.

Intersect Alert January 21, 2019

Privacy


Privacy and Digital Rights for All

"The United States confronts a crisis. Digital giants invade our private lives, spy on our families, and gather our most intimate facts for profit. Bad actors, foreign and domestic, target the personal data gathered by U.S. firms, including our bank details, email messages, and Social Security Numbers."

"Our privacy laws are decades out of date. We urgently need a new approach to privacy protection. We must update federal laws and create a data protection agency specifically tasked with safeguarding the privacy of Americans. The time is now."

https://www.citizen.org/sites/default/files/privacy-and-digital-rights-for-all-framework.pdf


Toying with Privacy: Regulating the Internet of Toys

"Abstract - Recently, toys have become more interactive than ever before. The emergence of the Internet of Things (IoT) makes toys smarter and more communicative: they can now interact with children by 'listening' to them and respond accordingly. While there is little doubt that these toys can be highly entertaining for children and even possess social and educational benefits, the Internet of Toys (IoToys) raises many concerns. Beyond the fact that IoToys that might be hacked or simply misused by unauthorized parties, datafication of children by toy conglomerates, various interested parties and perhaps even their parents could be highly troubling. It could profoundly threaten children's right to privacy as it subjects and normalizes them to ubiquitous surveillance and datafication of their personal information, requests, and any other information they divulge. While American policymakers acknowledged the importance of protecting children's privacy online back in 1998, when crafting COPPA, this regulatory framework might become obsolete in face of the new privacy risks that arise from IoToys. Do fundamental differences between websites and IoToys necessitate a different legal framework to protect children's privacy? Should policymakers recalibrate the current legal framework to adequately protect the privacy of children who have IoToys? Finally, what are the consequences for children's privacy of ubiquitous parental surveillance through IoToys — allegedly granted to safeguard children from online risks? And how might children's privacy be better framed and protected in this context?"

"This Article focuses on the privacy concerns that IoToys raise. Part I briefly outlines the evolution of IoToys while examining their capacity to collect and retain data. Then, in reference to the legal framework chosen to protect children from online datafication twenty years ago, the next part discusses the American perception of children's privacy, focusing on COPPA. Through this analysis, this part will show how key market players currently comply with COPPA regulation, and evaluate whether such compliance is relevant to IoToys' dangers and challenges. Part III revisits COPPA, challenges it, and in calling for its recalibration offers some practical solutions to IoToys' privacy threats. Thereafter Part IV normatively evaluates children's conception of privacy and argues that IoToys' monitoring practices could jeopardize the parent-child relationship and calls for recalibrating children's privacy in the digital era. The final part summarizes the discussion and concludes that children's privacy matters today perhaps more than ever before, and that the potential movement toward a ubiquitous surveillance era should not lead to its demise."

https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3298054


DuckDuckGo Search Switches Mapping to Apple Maps

"Privacy-focused search engine DuckDuckGo announced yesterday that the search engine's map and address related searches and functions are now powered by Apple's MapKit JS framework."

"The new functionality is live already for desktop and mobile devices that use DuckDuckgo for searches."

"DuckDuckGo highlights two main benefits that come out of the move: improved privacy and better mapping functionality."

"Users may see maps and related data when they run searches for places or addresses. A search for the best Thai, Vietnamese or Italian restaurant displays a map and related information in the sidebar or at the top on search results pages."

"Searches for addresses, geographical places, local businesses, a type of business, or nearby places return embedded maps usually."

https://www.ghacks.net/2019/01/16/duckduckgo-search-switches-mapping-to-apple-maps/

Facebook Algorithms and Personal Data

“About half of Facebook users say they are not comfortable when they see how the platform categorizes them, and 27% maintain the site’s classifications do not accurately represent them.”

“Most commercial sites, from social media platforms to news outlets to online retailers, collect a wide variety of data about their users’ behaviors. Platforms use this data to deliver content and recommendations based on users’ interests and traits, and to allow advertisers to target ads to relatively precise segments of the public. But how well do Americans understand these algorithmdriven classification systems, and how much do they think their lives line up with what gets reported about them? As a window into this hard-to-study phenomenon, a new Pew Research Center survey asked a representative sample of users of the nation’s most popular social media platform, Facebook, to reflect on the data that had been collected about them.”

http://www.pewinternet.org/wp-content/uploads/sites/9/2019/01/PI_2019.01.16_Facebook-algorithms_FINAL2.pdf


Location Data is Ground Zero in Privacy Wars

"Our phones' GPS and location capabilities are a key part of what make them magical — enabling them to speed our commutes, hail rides and find the devices when we lose them. These capabilities are also ground zero for the looming fight over defining the boundaries of privacy and acceptable uses of our personal information."

"The big picture: Three recent stories show just how common problems with location data can be — and how thorny they've become."

https://www.axios.com/location-data-is-ground-zero-in-privacy-wars-6177bbc4-92df-4b8a-ba72-e0c956efc51f.html


'Right To Be Forgotten' By Google Should Apply Only In EU, Says Court Opinion

"The 'right to be forgotten', which enables claimants to request the removal of links to irrelevant or outdated online information about them, should not be enforceable globally, the European court of justice (ECJ) has found in a preliminary opinion."

"The controversial power, requiring search engines to prevent access to material on the internet, should be enforceable only in the EU and not worldwide, the court’s advocate general, Maciej Szpunar, said. Final judgments by the ECJ usually endorse initial opinions."

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2019/jan/10/right-to-be-forgotten-by-google-should-apply-only-in-eu-says-court

Copyright


Now EVERYBODY Hates the New EU Copyright Directive

"Until last spring, everyone wanted to see the new European Copyright Directive pass; then German MEP Axel Voss took over as rapporteur and revived the most extreme, controversial versions of two proposals that had been sidelined long before as the Directive had progressed towards completion."

"After all, this is the first refresh on EU copyright since 2001, and so the Directive is mostly a laundry list of overdue, uncontroversial technical tweaks with many stakeholders; the last thing anyone wanted was a spoiler in the midst."

"Anyone, that is, except for German newspaper families (who loved Article 11, who could charge Big Tech for the privilege of sending readers to their sites) and the largest record labels (who had long dreamed of Article 13, which would force the platforms to implement filters to check everything users posted, and block anything that resembled a known copyrighted work, or anything someone claimed was a known copyrighted work)."

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2019/01/now-everybody-hates-new-eu-copyright-directive


Copyright’s Safe Harbors Preserve What We Love About the Internet

"How is the Internet different from what came before? We’ve had great art, music, film, and writing for far longer than we’ve had the World Wide Web. What we didn’t have were global conversations and collaborations that millions can participate in. The Internet has lowered barriers to participation in culture, politics, and communities of interest. Copyright’s safe harbors for intermediaries are essential to making this possible. But today, those safe harbors are under threat from laws like Article 13 of the EU’s proposed Copyright in the Digital Single Market Directive. And some voices in the U.S. want to gut the safe harbors here."

"In the U.S., the safe harbors of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act protect Internet companies of various kinds against the possibility of massive copyright infringement damages when one of their users copies creative work illegally. In return for that protection, Internet companies have to take some concrete steps, like adopting and enforcing a repeat infringer policy. Some companies—the ones that store user-uploaded content—have to register an agent to accept and act on takedown notices from rightsholders (the familiar 'DMCA notices'). The law is explicit that Internet companies aren’t required to surveil everything uploaded by users to find possible copyright infringement. It also provides a counter-notice process for users to get non-infringing uploads put back online."

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2019/01/copyrights-safe-harbors-preserve-what-we-love-about-internet

Publishing


Editorial Mutiny at Elsevier Journal

“The entire editorial board of the Elsevier-owned Journal of Informetrics resigned Thursday in protest over high open-access fees, restricted access to citation data and commercial control of scholarly work.”

“Today, the same team is launching a new fully open-access journal called Quantitative Science Studies. The journal will be for and by the academic community and will be owned by the International Society for Scientometrics and Informetrics (ISSI). It will be published jointly with MIT Press.”

“The editorial board of the Journal of Informetrics said in a statement that they were unanimous in their decision to quit. They contend that scholarly journals should be owned by the scholarly community rather than by commercial publishers, should be open access under fair principles, and publishers should make citation data freely available.”

https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2019/01/14/elsevier-journal-editors-resign-start-rival-open-access-journal

Intersect Alert January 14, 2019

Privacy

Please Forget Where I Was Last Summer: The Privacy Risks of Public Location (Meta)Data

"Abstract—The exposure of location data constitutes a significant privacy risk to users as it can lead to de-anonymization, the inference of sensitive information, and even physical threats. In this paper we present LPAuditor, a tool that conducts a comprehensive evaluation of the privacy loss caused by publicly available location metadata. First, we demonstrate how our system can pinpoint users’ key locations at an unprecedented granularity by identifying their actual postal addresses. Our experimental evaluation on Twitter data highlights the effectiveness of our techniques which outperform prior approaches by 18.9%-91.6% for homes and 8.7%-21.8% for workplaces. Next we present a novel exploration of automated private information inference that uncovers “sensitive” locations that users have visited (pertaining to health, religion, and sex/nightlife). We find that location metadata can provide additional context to tweets and thus lead to the exposure of private information that might not match the users’ intentions."

https://arxiv.org/pdf/1901.00897.pdf


(Don't) Return to Sender: How to Protect Yourself From Email Tracking

"Tracking is everywhere on the Internet. Over the past year, a drumbeat of tech-industryscandals has acclimated users to the sheer number of ways that personal information can be collected and leaked. As a result, it might not come as a surprise to learn that emails, too, can be vectors for tracking. Email senders can monitor who opens which emails, when, and what device they use to do it. If you work for a business or a non-profit that sends mass emails, maybe you’ve used tools to perform this kind of tracking before. Even if you have used them, this might be the first you’ve heard of it — because unfortunately, in email marketing software, tracking is often enabled by default."  

"There are a lot of different ways to track email, and different techniques can lie anywhere on the spectrum from marginally acceptable to atrocious. Responsible tracking should aggregate a minimal amount of anonymous data, similar to page hits: enough to let the sender get a sense of how well their campaign is doing without invading users’ privacy. Email tracking should always be disclosed up-front, and users should have a clear and easy way to opt out if they choose to. Lastly, organizations that track should minimize and delete user data as soon as possible according to an easy-to-understand data retention and privacy policy."

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2019/01/stop-tracking-my-emails


Remember the FCC’s Broadband Privacy Rules? The Motherboard Exposé Takes Us Down Memory Lane

"On Tuesday, Motherboard published an articleexposing the jaw-dropping ease of data collection and commercialization practices that can allow a stranger to find a cell phone’s location with just a phone number and $300. Motherboard’s investigation found that telecommunications companies, including T-Mobile, AT&T, and Sprint, would sell location data with an aggregator, which sold the data to MicroBilt, which then sold it to a Motherboard investigator for 'dirt cheap'.”

"It was just last year when Senator Ron Wyden wrote to the Federal Communications Commission about Securus, a firm that that was offering geolocation of phones to low-level law enforcement without a warrant, thereby jeopardizing cell phone locations of not only inmates, but anyone with a phone number – which is pretty much everyone."

https://www.publicknowledge.org/news-blog/blogs/remember-the-fccs-broadband-privacy-rules-the-motherboard-expose-takes-us-down-memory-lane#When:20:20:00Z

Podcasts


The Room of Requirement - This American Life

"Libraries aren't just for books. They're often spaces that transform into what you need them to be: a classroom, a cyber café, a place to find answers, a quiet spot to be alone. It's actually kind of magical. This week, we have stories of people who roam the stacks and find unexpected things that just happen to be exactly what they required."

https://www.thisamericanlife.org/664/the-room-of-requirement

Open Data

What Makes a Good Open Data Use Case?

"Cities have made great strides in publishing foundational open data, and are constantly working to release more and better data. But many city officials still wonder: what will this data do for the community? Who is actually using it?"

"Understanding how data will be applied in the public domain is a key element of planning and allocating the limited resources dedicated to open data programs. Ground-truthing data in its potential use cases can ensure that when data is opened, it is for a purpose."

https://sunlightfoundation.com/2019/01/11/what-makes-a-good-open-data-use-case/

Copyright


The Internet is Facing a Catastrophe For Free Expression and Competition: Sweden, Germany, Poland and Luxembourg Could Tip The Balance

"The new EU Copyright Directive is progressing at an alarming rate. This week, the EU is asking its member-states to approve new negotiating positions for the final language. Once they get it, they're planning to hold a final vote before pushing this drastic, radical new law into 28 countries and 500,000,000 people."

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2019/01/internet-facing-catastrophe-free-expression-and-competition-only-europeans-can

Please feel free to pass along in part or in its entirety; attribution appreciated. The Intersect Alert is a newsletter of the Communications Committee, San Francisco Bay Area Chapter, Special Libraries Association.

Intersect Alert January 7, 2019

Libraries


Library of Congress Web Archive

"The Library of Congress Web Archive selects, preserves, and provides access to archived web content selected by subject experts from across the Library, so that it will be available for researchers today and in the future. Web sites are ephemeral and often considered at-risk born-digital content. New web sites form constantly, URLs change, content changes, and web sites sometimes disappear entirely. Web sites document current events, organizations, public reactions, government information, and cultural and scholarly information on a wide variety of topics. Materials that used to appear in print are increasingly published online."

"This site provides general information about program activities, information for researchers who are interested in using the web archives, and information for site owners who might be included in the archives."

https://www.loc.gov/programs/web-archiving/about-this-program/?loclr=blogloc

Copyright


'Party Like it's 1923': New Out-of-Copyright Works and Where to Find Them

"The year 2019 got off to a sweet start for librarians and copyright nerds as a slew of books, films, and music compositions entered the public domain in the U.S. for the first time in 21 years."

"The works, which include poetry by Robert Frost and novels by Agatha Christie and Joseph Conrad, are out of copyright, which means anyone can use them without fear of a nasty letter from intellectual property attorneys."

"The public domain, of course, is not a new concept—it’s what makes works by Shakespeare or Beethoven available to all—but, in the United States, it has been dry since 1998."

http://fortune.com/2019/01/02/public-domain-1923/

Search


How to Use Google Reverse Image Search

" Using Google to reverse image search is a useful method for researching the origins of a photo found online. Whether it’s a historical picture presented with little context or an image that seems doctored, you can search the web for other instances of its use with Google Images. "

https://www.lifewire.com/use-google-reverse-image-search-4582422


Overlooked No More: Karen Sparck Jones, Who Established the Basis for Search Engines

"When most scientists were trying to make people use code to talk to computers, Karen Sparck Jones taught computers to understand human language instead."

"In so doing, her technology established the basis of search engines like Google."

"A self-taught programmer with a focus on natural language processing, and an advocate for women in the field, Sparck Jones also foreshadowed by decades Silicon Valley’s current reckoning, warning about the risks of technology being led by computer scientists who were not attuned to its social implications."

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/01/02/obituaries/karen-sparck-jones-overlooked.html

Privacy


How Apps on Android Share Data with Facebook - Report

"Previous research has shown how 42.55 percent of free apps on the Google Play store could share data with Facebook, making Facebook the second most prevalent third-party tracker after Google’s parent company Alphabet. In this report, Privacy International illustrates what this data sharing looks like in practice, particularly for people who do not have a Facebook account."

"This question of whether Facebook gathers information about users who are not signed in or do not have an account was raised in the aftermath of the Cambridge Analytica scandal by lawmakers in hearings in the United States and in Europe. Discussions, as well as previous fines by Data Protection Authorities about the tracking of non-users, however, often focus on the tracking that happens on websites. Much less is known about the data that the company receives from apps. For these reasons, in this report we raise questions about transparency and use of app data that we consider timely and important."

"Facebook routinely tracks users, non-users and logged-out users outside its platform through Facebook Business Tools. App developers share data with Facebook through the Facebook Software Development Kit (SDK), a set of software development tools that help developers build apps for a specific operating system. Using the free and open source software tool called "mitmproxy", an interactive HTTPS proxy, Privacy International has analyzed the data that 34 apps on Android, each with an install base from 10 to 500 million, transmit to Facebook through the Facebook SDK."

https://privacyinternational.org/report/2647/how-apps-android-share-data-facebook-report


Data Privacy Scandals and Public Policy Picking Up Speed: 2018 in Review

"2018 may be remembered as the Year of the Facebook Scandal, and rightly so. The Cambridge Analytica fiasco, Mark Zuckerberg’s congressional testimony, a massive hack, and revelations of corporate smear campaigns were only the tip of the iceberg. But many more companies mishandled consumer privacy in 2018, too. From the Strava heatmap exposing military locations in January to the gigantic Marriot hack discovered in November, companies across Silicon Valley and beyond made big mistakes with consumer data this year—and lawmakers and the public have taken notice."

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2018/12/data-privacy-scandals-and-public-policy-picking-speed-2018-year-review

Open Access


Will the World Embrace Plan S, the Radical Proposal to Mandate Open Access to Science Papers?

"Since the September 2018 launch of the Europe-backed program to mandate immediate open access (OA) to scientific literature, 16 funders in 13 countries have signed on. That's still far shy of Plan S's ambition: to convince the world's major research funders to require immediate OA to all published papers stemming from their grants. Whether it will reach that goal depends in part on details that remain to be settled, including a cap on the author charges that funders will pay for OA publication. But the plan has gained momentum: In December 2018, China stunned many by expressing strong support for Plan S. This month, a national funding agency in Africa is expected to join, possibly followed by a second U.S. funder. Others around the world are considering whether to sign on."

"Plan S, scheduled to take effect on 1 January 2020, has drawn support from many scientists, who welcome a shake-up of a publishing system that can generate large profits while keeping taxpayer-funded research results behind paywalls. But publishers (including AAAS, which publishes Science) are concerned, and some scientists worry that Plan S could restrict their choices."

https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2019/01/will-world-embrace-plan-s-radical-proposal-mandate-open-access-science-papers

Research


Plants of the World Online

"In 2015, the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew launched its first Science Strategy establishing its vision to document and understand global plant and fungal diversity and their uses, bringing authoritative expertise to bear on the critical challenges facing humanity today. The Science Strategy also committed Kew to delivering nine strategic outputs with the overarching aim to disseminate Kew’s scientific knowledge of plants and fungi to maximize its impact in science, education, conservation policy and management. The Plants of the World Online portal (POWO), is one of the nine strategic outputs and its aim is to enable users to access information on all the world’s known seed-bearing plants by 2020."

"With over 8.5 million items, Kew houses the largest and most diverse botanical and mycological collections in the world in the Victorian Herbarium and Fungarium in West London. They represent over 95% of known flowering plant genera and more than 60% of known fungal genera and yet, only 20% of this knowledge is available online. POWO is Kew’s way of turning 250 years of botanical knowledge into an open and accessible online global resource."

"POWO draws together Kew’s extensive data resources including its regional Floras and monographs, alongside images from the digitisation of the collections. The portal has been designed to maximise accessibility and enables the dissemination of plant information to its users via a mobile, tablet or desktop computer."

http://www.plantsoftheworldonline.org/


Please feel free to pass along in part or in its entirety; attribution appreciated. The Intersect Alert is a newsletter of the Communications Committee, San Francisco Bay Area Chapter, Special Libraries Association.

Intersect Alert - May 20, 2019

Privacy

Alexa, Are You Spying on Me?

“In May, an Amazon Echo device arbitrarily recorded the private conversation of a Portland family and sent it to a random person in their contacts list, reigniting concerns over the security flaws of smart speakers.”

“And to be fair, smart speakers like the Echo and Google Home have had their fair share of nightmare incidents to justify suspicions and mistrust in their reliability. But while installing a smart speaker in your home does come with security tradeoffs, we often misunderstand them, exaggerating the less critical ones while neglecting the more serious risks.”

“Here’s what you need to know about the security and privacy implications of smart speakers, both the myths and the realities.”

https://www.dailydot.com/debug/alexa-smart-speaker-vulnerabilities/

California: Tell the Senate to Empower You to Protect Your Own Privacy

“Californians have a constitutional right to privacy, and 94 percent of Californians agree they should be able to take companies that violate their privacy to court.”

“S.B. 561, authored by Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson, would provide consumers with that right and also improve existing tools for the state attorney general to enforce the California Consumer Privacy Act. This bill is the only one in the California legislature today to strengthen enforcement of the CCPA.”

“California State Sen. Anthony Portantino, chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, will make the decision about whether to move this bill forward next week.”

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2019/05/california-tell-your-legislators-stand-your-privacy

Consumer Groups Accuse Amazon of Illegally Collecting Data on Children

“A coalition of 19 consumer and privacy groups plans to file a complaint Thursday alleging that Amazon’s Echo Dot Kids Edition is illegally collecting voice recordings and other identifying information on users under 13 and that the system’s parental controls are flawed.”

“The complaint says that the Echo Dot Kids Edition — a colorful, youth-oriented version of Amazon’s popular “smart speaker” systems that allow users to ask questions, play music or control thermostats with voice commands — violates the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act, known as COPPA. The 1998 law sharply limits what data companies can collect without permission from parents.”

“The 96-page complaint is the latest in a series by consumer and privacy groups urging the Federal Trade Commission to intensify its enforcement of how leading technology companies treat children and their personal data. The Institute for Public Representation at Georgetown University Law Center served as counsel to the groups on the complaint.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/technology/2019/05/08/2af2d282-71cc-11e9-b5ca-3d72a9fa8ff1_story.html?utm_term=.348afc21e4d4

 Publishing

Who Owns the Law? Why We Must Restore Public Ownership of Legal Publishing

“Abstract: Each state has its own method for officially publishing the law. This article looks at the history of legal publishing for the fifty states before looking at how legal publishing even in moving to electronic publishing may not ensure public access to the law. The article addresses barriers to free access to the law in electronic publishing including copyright, contract law, and potentially, the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. The article concludes with prescriptions for how different actors, including state governments, publishers, libraries, and others can ensure robust public access to the law moving forward.”

https://osf.io/preprints/lawarxiv/xnbcp/

Professional Development

NNLM Resource Picks Webinar: NLM’s Data Discovery and Pillbox

“NNLM Resource Picks is a collaborative, bimonthly, webinar series featuring the National Library of Medicine resources to increase awareness of these resources as well as encourage their integration by libraries and other organizations to more fully serve their colleagues and communities.”

“Attend the next webinar session, “NLM’s Data Discovery and Pillbox” on Wednesday, May 29 at 3:00 p.m. ET (please adjust to your time zone).”

“As the National Library of Medicine transitions to become a platform for biomedical discovery and data-powered health, one area of focus is building a workforce for data-driven research and health. In support of this strategic goal, NLM launched Data Discovery, an online platform for making data findable, interoperable, accessible, and reusable (the FAIR principles). In addition to browser-based exploration, filtering, and visualization of data, Data Discovery includes Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) to help researchers and developers build applications that leverage its datasets. Pillbox, NLM’s pill identification and reference resource, long overdue for redesign, was rebuilt using Data Discovery as its foundation to showcase the power of this platform.”

“You are encouraged to attend the live session but the webinar will be recorded. The webinar is free but be sure to register to receive login information prior to the webinar!”

https://news.nnlm.gov/bhic/2019/05/nnlm-resource-picks-webinar-nlms-data-discovery-and-pillbox/

Libraries

To Fight Misinformation, Bring our Libraries Online

“Misinformation -- how it develops, how it spreads, and why people believe it -- is an unavoidable topic in current information policy debates. And though headlines have largely focused on the high-profile impacts of misinformation on everything from public health to voting behaviors and technological literacy, there’s another, more important question at stake: How do we combat it when it emerges?”

“Misinformation takes advantage of the unavoidable fact that no one can be an expert at everything. People’s impressions about the world, its contours and rules, are based on some combination of personal experience and knowledge imparted by outside sources. This is why fights about how we teach U.S. history to young children resonate so strongly; for many of those kids, that’s all the history instruction they’ll ever receive. The rest of the knowledge is just what they absorb from the media they consume and the other people they talk to.”

“Misinformation exploits this basic fact of human nature -- that no one can be an expert in everything -- by meeting people where they naturally are, and filling in the gaps in their knowledge with assertions that seem “plausible enough.” Sometimes, these assertions are misleading, false, or flatly self-serving (though they do lead to some spectacular twitter fights). In aggregate, these gap-fillers add up to construct a totally alternate reality whose politics, science, law, and history bear only a passing resemblance to our own. And in the absence of accessible, high-quality, primary source information, it’s next to impossible to convince people that what they’ve been told isn’t true.”

https://www.publicknowledge.org/news-blog/blogs/to-fight-misinformation-bring-our-libraries-online#When:15:51:00Z

Library Systems Report 2019

“The library technology industry, broadly speaking, shows more affinity toward utility than innovation. Library automation systems are not necessarily exciting technologies, but they are workhorse applications that must support the complex tasks of acquiring, describing, and providing access to materials and services. They represent substantial investments, and their effectiveness is tested daily in the library. But more than efficiency is at stake: These products must be aligned with the priorities of the library relative to collection management, service provision, and other functions.”

“Outdated automation systems can reinforce work patterns that no longer reflect priorities as core library activities change. Bursts of innovation can create new products better aligned with current library realities. The products that emerge out of these creative booms then become mainstays that support the next phase of library operations. The academic library sector can be seen as a cycle of innovation that began eight years ago with the inception of an automation product substantially different from previous systems. The trajectory of innovation for public and school libraries has followed a different course, characterized by incremental change layered on top of longstanding systems with aging architectures.”

https://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/2019/05/01/library-systems-report-2019/

Colliding Values at Doane

“Doane University in Nebraska shuttered a library exhibit and put a librarian on leave over historical photos of students in blackface. The university says the images ran counter to its values and, as presented, served no educational purpose. Some of the librarian’s faculty supporters disagree and say that Doane interfered in a learning moment, albeit a painful one, that their colleague was already working to right.”

http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2019/05/06/doane-u-suspends-library-director-over-exhibit-included-1920s-era-students-blackface