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Title:The Panoptic Librarian: The Role of Video Surveillance in the Modern Public Library
Author(s):Randall, David P.; Newell, Bryce Clayton
Subject(s):privacy
surveillance
library
ethics
policy
Abstract:Libraries have long maintained strong protections for patron privacy and intellectual freedom. However, the increasing prevalence of sophisticated surveillance systems in public libraries potentially threatens these core library commitments. This paper presents the findings of a qualitative case study examining why four libraries in the US and the UK installed video surveillance and how they manage these systems to balance safety and privacy. We examine the experience of these libraries, including one that later reversed course and completely removed all of its previously installed systems. We find that the libraries who install surveillance initially do so as either a response to specific incidents of crime or as part of the design of new buildings. Libraries maintain varying policies about whether video footage is protected as part of patron records, about dealing with law enforcement requests for footage, and whether patrons ought to maintain any expectation of privacy while inside libraries.
Issue Date:2014-03-01
Publisher:iSchools
Citation Info:Randall, D. P., & Newell, B. C. (2014). The Panoptic Librarian: The Role of Video Surveillance in the Modern Public Library. In iConference 2014 Proceedings (p. 508 - 521). doi:10.9776/14132
Series/Report:iConference 2014 Proceedings
Genre:Conference Paper / Presentation
Type:Text
Language:english
URI:http://hdl.handle.net/2142/47307
DOI:10.9776/14132
Other Identifier(s):132
Publication Status:published
Peer Reviewed:yes
Rights Information:Copyright 2014 is held by the authors of individual items in the proceedings. Copyright permissions, when appropriate, must be obtained directly from the authors.
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-02-28


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