May 16, 2022

Privacy and Confidentiality is the Theme of the Latest Issue of Oregon Library Association Quarterly (QLAQ)

From the OLA Quarterly Website:

Protecting patron privacy is a core tenet of the ethics of librarianship. The American Library Association’s Privacy: An Interpretation of the Library Bill of Rights (2019) emphasizes that protecting the privacy of library users is key to ensuring intellectual freedom because surveillance and monitoring produce a “chilling effect on users’ selection, access to, and use of library resources.” In 2005, librarians in Connecticut made headlines by standing up against the FBI and the USA Patriot Act to protect patron re- cords (Cowan, 2006). Faced with a clear threat to privacy, these librarians sued the U.S. government in defense of their patrons’ rights. However, the daily erosion of privacy facing patrons today is often more insidious and the day-to-day work of protecting privacy in libraries is less visible.

This issue of the Oregon Library Association Quarterly is dedicated to stories of how library workers across Oregon try— and sometimes struggle—to live up to our professional responsibility to protect privacy. These stories come from all corners of our library ecosystem, from public and aca- demic institutions and from large and small communities. The articles presented here provide snapshots of some of the current challenges that libraries face around privacy, as well as some practical tips for dealing with these challenges. We have also included a short guide to relevant state laws, which we hope provides context for the issue as a whole.

Oregon Library Association Quarterly
Winter 2022
Vol. 27 No. 1
DOI: 10.5399/osu/1093-7374.27.01.04

Guest Editors

Ellie Avis
Multnomah County Library

Kelly McElroy
Oregon State University


Direct to Full Text: Complete Issue
50 pages; PDF.

Privacy in Practice: Library Public Services and the Intersection of Personal Ideals
by Claudine Taillac, Jackson County Library Services

Learning Better for the Next Thing: Online Proctoring Services and Privacy Advocacy Outside the Library
by Sam Buechler Washington State University Vancouver

Don’t Deputize Intolerance: Keeping Your Security Policies Safe from Your Patrons
by Buzzy Nielsen, State Library of Oregon, and Jane F. Scheppke, Crook County Library

Safeguarding Student Privacy in Schools
by Miranda Doyle, Lake Oswego School District

Beyond HTTPS and the Cloud: Building a Safe and Secure Web Resource for DACA and Undocumented Students
by Kenna Warsinske, Oregon State University

Licensing Online Content to Ensure Patron Privacy: An Informal Survey of Oregon Librarians
by Jill Emery, Portland State University Library

Student Data Privacy and Automatic Textbook Billing
by Tina Weyland, Rogue Community College

The Distance Between Our Values and Actions: We Can’t Be Passive When it Comes to Privacy
by Meredith Farkas, Portland Community College

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.