Privacy and security issues impact every aspect of our lives – home, work, travel, education, health and medical records – to name but a few. On a weekly basis Pete Weiss highlights articles and information that focus on the increasingly complex and wide ranging ways technology is used to compromise and diminish our privacy and security, often without our situational awareness. Five highlights from this week: Electric Cars, Smart Refrigerators Pose Cyber Risk To US Utilities, GAO Finds; Supreme Court Sides With Facebook Over Unwanted Automated Texts; Hunting the hunters: How Russian hackers targeted US cyber first responders in SolarWinds breach; National Weather Service Digital Infrastructure Is a Disaster; and CRS In Focus – Biometric Technologies and Global Security.
Marcus P. Zillman’s guide comprises an extensive listing of resources and sites for students, researchers, teachers, infopros and parents, on multiple study areas. Sourced from academic, public, private, association and corporate sectors, the subject matters include: distance learning; MOOCs, lecture guides and study notes, study skill resources, online tutoring and homework help, free e-learning videos, scholarship resources and PhD, Dissertation, thesis, and academic writing resources.
Black and Hispanic people more ‘engaged’ with books than most Americans are: New report from Panorama Project
David H. Rothman, cofounder of LibraryEndowment.org, discusses the new Panorama Project report that covers a variety of topics, ranging from piracy to synergies between books and other media. Specifically significant to Rothman is the report’s data indicating that avid book engagers (4+ books/month) are more ethnically diverse and younger than the general survey population.
John Mark Ockerbloom elucidates the significance of promoting and protecting literature, the public domain and open access to publications In the age of COVID-19.
David H. Rothman advocates on behalf of the Panorama Project which he says is not just an effort of librarians even though it’s benefiting from the input of Alan S. Inouye, the ALA’s director of public policy. Among the others involved have been people from the Book Industry Study Group, independent booksellers, Penguin Random House, and OverDrive, the largest supplier of books for libraries and schools. One of the recurring themes in the project’s research is that synergies can exist not only between books and other media, but also between the library and retails models. For example, among several thousand readers surveyed, “38.31% of respondents had bought a book online that they first found in a library (within the last 12 months.” Local bookstores also benefited, and the project intends to explore this further. The findings are just preliminary, but based on earlier work by researchers for OCLC and OverDrive, Rothman doubts there will be surprises in regard to synergies between libraries and retail.
COVID-19 masks FAQs: How can cloth stop a tiny virus? What’s the best fabric? Do they protect the wearer?
Face masks reduce the spread of viruses passed on from respiratory secretions. While cloth masks are imperfect, widespread use of an imperfect mask has the potential to make a big difference in transmission of the virus. Professors Catherine Clase, Edouard Fu and Juan Jesus Carrero started reading the research on cloth masks and face coverings at the start of the pandemic, looking for ways to protect our vulnerable dialysis patients and our dialysis staff. We found a total of 25 studies, advocated for mask use and summarized our findings in a peer-reviewed publication. We also created an evidence-based, plain-language website to help people navigate this area. Although mask use has been widely adopted, many people still have questions about them, and we provide answers in this guide.
Chris Meadows was Editor and Senior Staff Writer at TeleRead, a site focusing on e-book and library news. It is with sadness that I share one of his last articles – he passed away last week after a hit and run accident. Chris was an expert on all facets of digital content issues, and the son of two librarians. I have included more information in my editor’s note at the end of the article. He will be missed. My deepest condolences to his family.
Privacy and security issues impact every aspect of our lives – home, work, travel, education, health and medical records – to name but a few. On a weekly basis Pete Weiss highlights articles and information that focus on the increasingly complex and wide ranging ways technology is used to compromise and diminish our privacy and security, often without our situational awareness. Four highlights from this week: Amazon’s Latest Gimmicks Are Pushing the Limits of Privacy; Data Security: Recent K-12 Data Breaches Show That Students Are Vulnerable to Harm; How to Implement implement zero trust without impacting productivity; and ‘So hard to prove you exist’: Flawed fraud protections deny unemployment to millions.
Investing in Libraries is the Right Thing for Administrators To Do, Even if There Are Fewer Resources Overall
Todd A. Carpenter advocates for libraries at this critical juncture when remote learning is now pervasive for academic institutions around the country. Although digitized resources delivered via IP-based authentication were the norm before the pandemic, users of library resources were only vaguely aware that the services they regularly use are provided by the library because of IP-based authentication. Carpenter argues that the need for budget cuts must be weighed against the expanded and critical need for students and faculty to have uninterrupted access to digital resources provided by their libraries.
Chris Meadows discusses the ongoing case by four publishers, Hachette Book Group, HarperCollins Publishers, John Wiley & Sons and Penguin Random House, against the Internet Archives Open Library respective to the scanning, public display, and distribution of entire literary works. As noted, this is “a potentially sensitive, and complex litigation.” The future of the Internet Archive may hang in the balance. This case is shining light on the heightened importance of evaluating fair use during a pandemic that is keeping vast books collections out of users reach for the unforeseeable future, while most education is confined to distance learning.