Main Page/Crash Courses/Systems and Policies/Week one

From Library Freedom Wiki Page
Revision as of 15:53, 19 April 2021 by Amacrina2 (talk | contribs)
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Week 1: Introduction

  • Welcome everyone! We’re so thrilled to be starting the first LFP Crash Course on Systems and Policies. This week, we’ll be getting acquainted with the course, including curriculum, technology, goals, and each other.

TBD on

Course overview

Course themes
  • WE ARE STILL IN A PANDEMIC (plus other kinds of social and economic collapse)
  • Systems and policies = vendors, library policies, library computer environments, figuring out the data we're collecting, how to collect less of it, how to secure it, who it gets shared with, and who is impacted if we don't safeguard privacy.
  • Surveillance capitalism: politics, ideology, and money behind technologies
  • Privacy and intellectual freedom with a justice-based approach, not just a rights-based approach
  • Privacy strategies and tools with a harm reduction lens
  • Individual vs collective action
LFP background
  • Alison intro
  • Howard intro
  • Brief LFP history
  • How the Crash Courses came to be
Syllabus and weekly layout
  • Eight weeks, roughly five hours a week
  • Weekly commitments: lecture, discussion, readings, tasks.
  • Schedule overview: [1]
  • Weekly meetings are one hour of lecture, one hour of discussion, so please be ready to participate each week!
  • Tasks are things for you to complete every week. If you have to miss some, that is fine! They're meant to help you engage more deeply in this course.
  • Let Alison know if you need to be absent from one of the real-time lectures, or if you need to miss a whole week for any reason.
  • Review code of conduct.
Class technology
  • Discourse messageboard: (register an account)
  • Zoom video/audio chat/recordings (Zoom meeting ID 912-942-8892)
  • Riseup mailing list: [need to add Crash Course mailing list here]
  • Wiki: (register an account)
  • Vimeo archive of lectures:

Please note that all class technology is publicly accessible! That means that the mailing list archives, messageboard, and wiki can all be viewed by anyone. I’ve set it up this way so that the materials we create can easily be shared, but also, I understand that sometimes we might want to talk amongst ourselves, so I’ve created a “private” category on the Discourse messageboard that’s only viewable to our group. You can use this category whenever you want to talk about something that you don’t want the whole world to see. Likewise, we are not recording the second hour of our weekly conversations, so that this can also be a more private space for discussion.

Outcomes for this cohort
  • Gain a more holistic understanding of the data environment in libraries.
  • Learn how to use threat modeling to determine how the loss of privacy impacts our communities, and to determine priorities when implementing better privacy practices.
  • Learn the language of privacy, and use it to talk to talk to library stakeholders and craft effective, comprehensive policy.
  • Understand some of the endemic vendor privacy issues and discuss opportunities for resistance and harm reduction.
  • Understand privacy issues and best practices affecting public computer environments.
Optional final projects

Lots of LFP folks have found it valuable to work on a final project as part of their work in these cohorts. Sometimes folks have worked alone, sometimes in groups. These final projects are optional, but if you choose to work on one, Alison will be ready to work with you as much as you need in bringing it to life. Our graphic designer, Mike Finch, may also be able to help with the aesthetics of your project.

Some final projects that people have worked on in the past:

  • A library privacy policy and/or example vendor agreement
  • An analysis of vendor privacy issues
  • A privacy class
  • A privacy program that isn't a class
  • A display about privacy
  • A flyer or poster about a privacy concept
  • A staff training
  • Something focused on privacy work outside of the library walls, like a letter to a legislator
  • A privacy audit plan for a library
  • A comprehensive privacy plan for a library

Some examples of these projects can be found on the LFP website.

This week only!


We'll begin by getting into some background about what's going on and how we got here. Our focus this week will be on a range of readings...a little bit of the history and politics of Big Data and government surveillance, as well as some of the historical ideas about what a more just internet could look like. We don't have anywhere near the time to go through all of the history here, so we'll just be focusing on some of the bigger issues. Please have the reading completed before our Monday lecture, because we'll spend that lecture talking about what we learned. Later, we'll continue the discussion on You'll also review the Data Detox Kit and complete one day of it for your weekly tasks.

We won't be discussing these readings until week 2! But there are a lot, so you have two weeks to read them.

The Surveillant Assemblage, Kevin D. Haggerty and Richard V. Ericson

A Declaration of Independence of Cyberspace by John Perry Barlow (read before reading The Californian Ideology)

The Californian Ideology by Richard Barbrook and Andy Cameron (read after reading A Declaration of Independence of Cyberspace)

The History of Surveillance and the Black Community

Guest lecturer

No guest this week; Alison will lead the lecture

  • What are your personal goals for this course?
   How do you see the surveillant assemblage at work in our lives?
   What stands out to you about the ideologies that helped shape the internet?
  • Lecture, readings and discussion forum
  • Create a account
  • Read through materials on
  • Start readings for next week