Of Ethics, Users, and Data: Building a National Conversation for Web Privacy and Web Analytics

Privacy is still a thing today—despite the best efforts of our favorite commercial web giants and state governments to turn privacy fully into a thing of the past. In the face of overwhelming surveillance and tracking pressures, libraries continue fighting for privacy on behalf of ourselves and our communities.

To aid in this battle, we convened “A National Forum on Web Privacy and Web Analytics.” This IMLS-funded project brought together 40 librarians, technologists, and privacy researchers from across the US and Canada to critically address library values and practices related to third-party analytics. Libraries have historically offered safe spaces of intellectual freedom, but the widespread implementation of third-party analytics may conflict with our commitments to privacy. With these challenges in mind, our Forum essentially asked, “How can libraries implement privacy-focused, values-driven analytics practices?”

This presentation will provide an overview of our National Forum and its results, including discussion of key challenges, strengths, partners, and strategies for achieving privacy on web. We will also focus on generating dialogue within the Code4Lib community, especially regarding analytics needs, implementation approaches, and real-world challenges for achieving privacy.


11:50 AM
20 minutes