FTRF has a Developing Issues Committee that presents semiannual reports to the board about free speech and privacy issues that have recently emerged or are on the horizon. Below are some of the issues.
Personal Data Collection and E-Books/Online Library Systems
Labeling of Book and Media Content for Youth
The American Library Association strongly discourages ratings systems for books and
other reading materials. However, there is a growing dependence (by parents, schools, and even some libraries) on book ratings systems that serve more to block young people from reading rather than to think critically about what they want to read or the ideas they encounter.
Online Public Access Catalogs, privacy, and labeling
The ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom has
received complaints about Bibliocommons, the new OPAC software application. The concern is that it may violate library
users' privacy and raises issues of prejudicial labeling because it allows
library users to place criticism of books on the book's catalog record.
Cloud computing and privacy
The use of cloud computing raises concerns about
privacy, information integrity, and ownership, control and access to
information. A particular concern is
third party vendors whose contracts are not designed to protect the public
interest or libraries as institutions.
Library card residency requirement
Does a residency requirement for obtaining a library card unfairly impact the ability of homeless people to access public library materials?