Week 2 surveillance tech assignment

Here’s a place to collaborate on the week 2 assignment and/or post the link to the assignment.

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Hey folks. I chose the third option for the assignments this week, “Write one page about how to find out if surveillance tech procurement is happening in your community and how to disseminate this info to patrons.”

The thing I wrote up addresses more the first point of this topic–how to find info about procurement, as well as a few instances of video surveillance in the community where I work. I did it in the style of a one-page handout that could be given out at an information session or posted on our website. Here’s the link to my assignment.

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CLAIRE THIS IS SO GOOD! I really love it. You did great research, and this makes for an excellent template for other libraries who want to present something simple, clear, and informative to their communities.

Hi all. I also chose the third option for this assignment. Claire, I really liked the format you used for disseminating this information and did something similar since we often use our blog for this type of information. The link is here.

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love this Rebekah! great reading recommendation for Cyrus Farivar’s book! he spoke at an LFP conference that I organized at Noisebridge in SF a few years ago (when ALA was in SF). great person.

Thanks, Alison. Cyrus spoke about his book at my branch in April for Choose Privacy Week. He was a great presenter!

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I went with planning an information session on surveillance tech - linked here. I could have gone on and on with a reading list but had to cut myself off for now.


Hi! I chose assignment #2 - “Write a one page plan on how you’d organize a democratic information session about surveillance tech in your community.” I thought about it in the context of my work with community college students in the Bay Area . Sorry if it’s a little out of scope! Cheers!

Assignment #2:


Hi All, I looked at creating a CCTV policy with a twist - I tried editing my library’s policies to better reflect best practices. I began with thinking about what Kade said about avoiding mission creep and focusing on what the library wants to achieve. I believe that most librarians aren’t worried about petty crimes or rule violations. Librarians and staff are concerned about threats, harassment, and violence. Trying to define that narrowly in a way that couldn’t be creatively applied to petty offenses felt impossible though! I could imagine a gung-ho director targeting a person for colorful language by calling it “threatening”!

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I love the activist coalition you proposed as possible panel guests, and I think this infosheet makes for a great accompaniment to the panel! great job!

Totally not out of scope @mtkinney! You’ve identified important questions and potential answers about how to bring this into your library. Partnering with faculty around a research project is a great suggestion. I’d love to see you reach out to a faculty member and gauge their interest in that.

I love that you linked to TN’s open records/meetings laws @librarianbryan . Really important to remind folks that while these systems tend to be pretty opaque, the law is usually on the side of transparency!

hey I love this approach @Sarah_in_Oregon! it illustrates how so much of this stuff usually comes down to just changing or adding a few words to create better clarity and prevent misuse. I hope you can influence your library to make this into an actual policy change.

Hey everyone,

Just added my Week 2 assignment. I went with planning an information session on CCTV. In South Florida we have many at-risk communities that could be impacted by this technology. Not just our large immigrant population, but we unfortunately have a lot of people in our area experiencing homelessness. These people could feel threatened or targeted by surveillance (i forgot to mention this group in my write-up, so I’m making up for that here).

Anyway, here’s my assignment. Sorry about the delay.



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Don’t worry about the delay @josh , you know that we’re trying to keep it easy-breezy-cheddar-cheesy with deadlines and whatnot.

Definitely agree with your idea for a moderated panel! In our NYC weekend, we’ll have a guest trainer to help us with exactly this – having productive discussions about controversial subjects, keeping the convo civil while also pivoting back to the points we want to make, etc.

You (like others) are so right to engage local activist orgs in this conversation, and advertising directly to those communities via Spanish and Creole language local media is CRUCIAL!!

For this assignment I went with drafting a CCTV policy. I did a quick Google search and found that there are many library systems out there that already have CCTV policy. What was interesting was that all of the ones that I looked at have very similar verbiage and it was pretty comprehensive with components that addressed purpose, recording retention, access and disclosure. Instead of creating something new I collated CCTV policy from several library systems.

Currently, my library system doesn’t have a written CCTV policy and I think we definitely need one to ensure patron’s privacy but also clear policy on who can view the recordings and procedures for general public requesting access.

Library Security Camera Policy

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