OIF and Intellectual Freedom in Orlando

Midwinter Meeting/Annual Conference, Office for Intellectual Freedom

ALA Annual Conference in Orlando

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ALA’s 2016 Annual Conference is in Orlando, FL and the Office for Intellectual Freedom will be there staffing the different committee meetings and programs.

Committee meetings and programs are open to any attendee, and are often a good way to learn about the business of ALA and its intellectual freedom initiatives. You can find all of these sessions and others about intellectual freedom in the conference scheduler.


IF 101
Friday, 6/24/16 @ 12:30-1:30 pm
At this one-hour fast-paced session you will learn about the intellectual freedom activities of ALA and affiliated organizations, get all the details on the IF programs planned for this conference and other upcoming events, and find out how you can get involved in the intellectual freedom workings of the Association.

Banned Books Readout BoothBanned Books Readout Booth

On Saturday, June 25 and Sunday, June 26, from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, SAGE, the Office for Intellectual Freedom, and the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Round Table invite you to join them at the Banned Books Readout Booth to read a passage from a banned or challenged work of GLBT literature to stand in solidarity with Orlando’s GLBT community and to show our support for the Orlando shooting victims and their families.  All are invited to speak from the heart about why the book matters to you.  Readings will be professionally video recorded and will be featured on the Banned Books Week YouTube channel during Banned Books Week, September 25-October 1, 2016. The booth will be located at the entrance to the exhibit hall in the Orange County Convention Center (look out for a red carpet and cameras).

Think you’ll be in a hurry? RSVP now, and we’ll put you on our “Fast Pass” list to jump to the front of the line.

Now Showing @ ALA
Saturday, 6/25/16 @ 11:00 am
To Begin the World Over Again: The Life of Thomas Paine
Ian Ruskin, world renowned actor and playwright, will be at ALA’s Annual Conference as Thomas Paine, author of Common Sense, a political activist, philosopher, and revolutionary from the 18th century. Thomas Paine wrote about ideas that were so controversial he was often imprisoned and fined, and almost executed. His works were banned in Europe and anyone who distributed, read or discussed his books faced prosecution. Some were arrested for simply displaying a portrait of Thomas Paine. In the late 1700’s, he fled to the United States where he continued to write about slavery, religion, and independence from British government.

Conference attendees will have an opportunity to meet Ian Ruskin as Thomas Paine on Friday at the conference center and before the Exhibit Hall opens at 5pm. During the film showing on Saturday, he will be available for questions and attendees can learn how to share Thomas Paine, his history and his passion for our country with their own communities.

Intellectual Freedom for Youth in Custody – Discussion Forum
Saturday, 6/25/16 @ 10:30 am
Sponsored by ASCLA: An open discussion on all issues relating to the intellectual freedom rights (or lack thereof) of young people held in detention centers, jails, or prisons.

Offensive Speech, Trigger Warnings, and other Threats to Academic Freedom, what is the Role of Academic Librarians?
Saturday, 6/25/16 @ 1:00-2:30 pm
Dr. Mark Alfino, co-editor of the Library Juice Press Handbook of Intellectual Freedom; Martin Garnar, Assistant Editor of the Intellectual Freedom Manual, Ninth Edition; and Dr. Toni Samek, author of Intellectual Freedom and Social Responsibility in American Librarianship, 1967-1974; will provide their insights into how academic freedom continues to be threatened for ourselves and our academic partners. How are the principles of academic freedom reflected in our associations, our practice, and within our institutions?

Serving Up the Subversive
Saturday, 6/25/16 @ 1:00-2:30 pm
Conversation between archivists, curators, librarians, and educators about working with controversial materials. Panelists will discuss how they handle controversial materials in the classroom, in the reading room, and in the exhibition case. Questions to be considered include: What do we mean by controversial?: How do we as individuals define it, how do we as professionals define it, how do our audiences define it, and how do the administrations under which we work define it; How free can we be when teaching, curating, etc. in our respective environments? How do we move towards a true(r) version of inclusiveness in our respective areas? This panel is being co-sponsored by the Intellectual Freedom Committee (IFC).

AMA! Ask Me (Us) Anything: IFC/FTRF Issues Briefing
Saturday, 6/25/16 @ 3:00-4:00 pm

You name the kind of library, and it has …. issues. Schools are particular hotspots, both in the library, and more and more in the curriculum. In public libraries filtering fights and book challenges continue; new targets are emerging. Even university presidents and tenured professors have lost their jobs merely for expressing their opinions. And yet, despite all this evidence of extraordinary sensitivity to language and microaggressions, our political discourse, even for the highest office in the land, has sunk to new levels of coarseness.

Meanwhile surveillance of the American public – by the federal government, by corporations, by a host of third and fourth party vendors – is now almost unavoidable. On the other hand, a whole new culture is stirring, an explosion of fresh, diverse writing that has yet to find its way to our institutions. We have some ideas about that.

Join members of the Intellectual Freedom Committee and the staff of the Office for Intellectual Freedom and the Freedom to Read Foundation for a robust conversation. Ask us anything. Tell us anything. It’s a free speech zone!

Intellectual Freedom Round Table Awards Reception & Member SocialIFRT Member Social
Saturday, 6/25/16 @ 7:00-9:00 pm
Everyone is invited to the 2016 IFRT Awards Reception & Member Social on Saturday, June 25 from 7 – 9 p.m. at the Regency Hyatt Orlando in Room Bayhill 17. IFRT’s John P. Immroth and Eli M. Oboler Memorial Awards will be presented. Food will be served, and a cash bar will be available. This year, the IFRT Awards Reception and Member Social is being combined with a promotional event for the Leroy C. Merritt Humanitarian Fund. Donations to the Merritt Fund will be accepted and encouraged at the reception. Come enjoy food and festivities at this Intellectual Freedom celebration!

No Room at the Library: The Ethics of Diversity
Sunday, 6/26/16 @ 1:00-2:30 pm
In support of ALA’s multiyear campaign of Libraries Transform, we want to foster dialog about inclusion and ethics in libraries. Keynote speaker, Loida Garcia-Febo, and a panel of thoughtful leaders will facilitate audience discussion after the Ethics committee performs three different skits. In the tradition of “What Would You Do?”, we will strive to shed light on ethical dilemmas involving religious, cultural and LGBTQ issues. Reflecting on the recent resolution to ALA council, one skit will address potential Islamophobia and the ethical responsibilities of librarians to promote libraries transforming to a global and inclusive space.

Student Privacy: The “Big Picture on Big Data”
Monday, 6/27/16 @ 10:00-11:30 am
Every day, technology is making it possible to collect and analyze ever more data about students’ performance and behavior, including their use of library resources. The use of “big data” in the educational environment, however, raises thorny questions and deep concerns about individual privacy and data security, especially as schools increasingly adopt vendor-based data services that require transfer of student data to third-party providers.

California recently responded to these concerns by passing the Student Online Private Information Protection Act (SOPIPA), and twenty-five other states have adopted or considered similar legislation. Student data privacy also is now the focus of several bills in Congress, including one based on SOPIPA.

Join us for an informative look at the big picture on student data privacy as Elana Zeide, a fellow at New York University’s Information Law Institute and an affiliate of the Data & Society Research Institute, discusses how the growing use of big data threatens student privacy and how evolving state and federal data privacy laws impact school and academic libraries.

Taking the Cake: A Generational Talkback
Monday, 6/27/16 @ 1:00-2:30 pm

In 2016, A Birthday Cake for George Washington was published, then pulled, by Scholastic. While created, illustrated, and edited by women of color, the book was strongly criticized because of its images of “smiling slaves.” Many people believe the book should never have been published and celebrate its removal from shelves. Others believe that intellectual freedom has been compromised.

For many years, intellectual freedom, a core value of librarianship and many colleagues in the publishing world, has looked to a near First Amendment absolutism. Today, a growing concern over the need for more diversity in publishing, a greater sensitivity to the abuses of power and privilege, has given rise to a stronger commitment in the field to social justice.

Are these values in conflict? Is one value replacing another? In an era of trigger warnings, revenge porn, and an emerging global community of new voices, what does IF mean today? What are our responsibilities as one generation of publishers and librarians begins to give way to another?

Engaging in the conversation and talkback will be Judy Platt of the Association of American Publishers and a Freedom to Read Foundation Roll of Honor awardee, and Katie Chamberlain Kritikos, the recipient of the 2016 Gordon M. Conable Conference Scholarship. James LaRue, director of ALA’s the Office for Intellectual Freedom will introduce the session.

Please come join this important conversation about the foundations and future of our profession.

Auditorium Speaker Series Featuring Margaret Atwood
Saturday, 6/25/16 @ 10:30-11:30 am
Margaret Atwood is the award-winning author of more than 40 books of fiction, poetry, children’s literature, and critical essays, including The Handmaid’s Tale, the Booker Prize-winning The Blind Assassin, The Heart Goes Last , and the MaddAddam trilogy that began with the Man-Booker prize-nominated Oryx and Crake, continued with The Year of the Flood, and ended with MaddAddam. Her forthcoming book, The Tempest, (October 2016) is part of the Hogarth Shakespeare project that sees Shakespeare’s works retold by acclaimed and bestselling novelists of today. Atwood has consistently named William Shakespeare as one of the most important influences on her own work. Her first encounters with him took place in the 1950s at her Toronto high school. “The Tempest is, in some ways, an early multi-media musical,” she says. “If Shakespeare were working today he’d be using every special effect technology now makes available. But The Tempest is especially intriguing because of the many questions it leaves unanswered. What a strenuous pleasure it has been to wrestle with it!”

Atwood’s work has been published in more than 40 languages, including Farsi, Japanese, Turkish, Finnish, Korean, Icelandic, and Estonian, and she has won many international awards. She has served as President of the Writers’ Union of Canada, President of the Canadian Centre (English Speaking) of PEN International , is a current Vice-President of PEN International, and has also worked as a cartoonist, illustrator, librettist, playwright, and puppeteer.

Auditorium Speaker Series featuring Jazz Jennings
Monday, 6/27/16 @ 10:00-11:30 am
Jazz Jennings is one of the youngest and most prominent voices in the national discussion about gender identity. At the age of five and with the support of her parents, she transitioned to life as a girl. A year later, her first Barbara Walters interview aired, at a time when the public was much less knowledgeable or accepting of the transgender community. This groundbreaking interview was followed over the years by other high-profile interviews, a documentary, the launch of her YouTube channel, a picture book, and her own reality TV series—I Am Jazz—making her one of the most recognizable activists for transgender teens, children, and adults. Her children’s book, I Am Jazz, is number three on ALA’s Top Ten Most Challenged Books in 2015.

In her remarkable memoir, Being Jazz: My Life as a (Transgender) Teen, (June, 2016), Jennings reflects on these very public experiences and how they have helped shape mainstream attitudes toward the transgender community. She has faced challenges, bullying, discrimination, and rejection, yet perseveres as she educates others about her life as a transgender teen and learns to navigate the physical, social, and emotional upheavals of adolescence—particularly high school—complicated by the unique challenges of being transgender. Making the journey from girl to woman is never easy—especially when you began your life in a boy’s body. Throughout, her family has supported her and stood against those who don’t understand the true meaning of tolerance and unconditional love.

Jennings, who hosts a series of videos about her life on YouTube, was named to Time’s Most Influential Teens list two years in a row, was one of Huffington Post’s 14 Most Fearless Teens, and was the youngest person ever featured on Out’s Out 100, as well as on Advocate’s 40 Under 40 list. In 2014, she was named a Human Rights Campaign Youth Ambassador and received LogoTV’s Youth Trailblazer Award.

Committee/Round Table Meetings

Intellectual Freedom Committee (IFC)
I: Friday, 6/24/16 @ 8:30-10:00 am
II: Friday, 6/24/16 @ 10:30 am-12:30 pm
III: Saturday, 6/25/16 @ 8:30-10:00 am
IV: Saturday, 6/25/16 @ 10:30 am-12:30 pm
V: Monday, 6/27/16 @ 3:00-4:00 pm

IFC Privacy Subcommittee
Sunday, 6/26/16 @ 8:30-10:00 am

Intellectual Freedom Round Table (IFRT)
I: Friday, 6/24/16 @ 1:30-3:00 pm
II: Monday, 6/27/16 @ 8:30-10:00 am

Committee on Professional Ethics (COPE or Ethics)
I: Friday, 6/24/16 @ 1:30-3:00 pm
II: Monday, 6/27/16 @ 8:30-10:00 am

Committee on Legislation & Intellectual Freedom Committee Joint Meeting (COL/IFC)
Sunday, 6/26/16 @ 10:30-11:30 am


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