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Choose Privacy

Thursday, May 3rd, 2012

Choose Privacy Week, an initiative that invites library users into a national conversation about privacy rights in a digital age, takes place May 1-7, 2012 and is an ongoing program of the American Library Association.


Because we believe that freedom of speech is meaningless without the freedom to read. Confidentiality and privacy are essential to these freedoms, because if library users have to worry about being judged, punished, or put under surveillance, they may censor themselves. They may not seek answers to their questions or read the things they want to read, either in print or online. To be free and to govern themselves, people must be able to explore ideas—even controversial ones—without fear. You can read our policy at http://library.uvm.edu/about/policies/privacy.php

This video from the American Library Association features Cory Doctorow, Neil Gaiman, and social media users and experts talking about the challenges to privacy in the digital age.

In September of 2011, the University of Vermont Libraries co-sponsored an Jeff Chester’s talk on “Digital Media at the Crossroads” at Champlain College. Chester, Executive Director for the Center for Digital Democracy, lectured on the topic of digital democracy, the role of online marketing agencies, changes to policy affecting internet users and their privacy, neuromarketing, and data profiling.

To learn more about privacy, visit the Bailey/Howe Library. Handouts on privacy and our policies are available at the Reference and Circulation desks.

Want to take action? Tell your representatives in Washington how important privacy is to you.

“Living in a Wired World” video available

Monday, April 12th, 2010

Video from the UVM Libraries sponsored lecture, “Living in a Wired World: Can Personal Privacy Survive in the 21st Century?” is now available via CCTV/Channel 17.

Watch the video online:

Or when it airs on channel 17, later this week:

  • Thursday April 15, 11:30 PM
  • Friday April 16, 4:30 AM
  • Friday April 16, 10:30 AM

Imagine waking up one day in your own personal terrarium, where everything you do and say can be seen by anyone passing by. Sound scary? In a world of Web cams, social networking sites, and GPs-equipped phones, your dorm walls may be more transparent than you realize.

The University of Vermont Libraries presented a lecture and book-signing by Burlington-based attorney and computer forensics expert Frederick Lane, about the challenges emerging technologies pose to one of our most controversial rights, on Wednesday, November 18th at 4:30 PM, in Billings North Lounge.

Lane’s American Privacy: The 400-Year History of Our Most Contested Right was published by Beacon Press in the fall of 2009.

Lane is the author of numerous books and articles on issues of intellectual freedom, including freedom of speech, privacy online and in the workplace, the impact of technology on our rights and liberties, and the separation of church and state. His work has been featured on Nightline, 60 Minutes, and The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.