Library Instruction West 2020
Seattle, Washington
July 22-24
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Friday, July 24 • 11:00am - 12:15pm
“Who’s Afraid of WikiLeaks"

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Most academic libraries promote resource guides as lists of recommended resources curated by librarians with subject-specific knowledge. And yet, the vast majority of institutions don’t include WikiLeaks as a part of their curated research guides’ recommended resources.  We recently conducted a search of 116 ARL institutions’ research guide platforms, and discovered that only one member library (ours) chose to curate an entire guide tab or page on WikiLeaks. Only seven ARL libraries’ research guide pages contain a hyperlink to WikiLeaks or a specific leak. In contrast, we discovered that most libraries link to other open information tools like Google and Wikipedia.

Do we as a profession consider WikiLeaks unworthy of curation in research guides and perhaps by extension unworthy of teaching? Our broader professional culture has long championed its commitment to the defense of freedom of information. Is this disconnect worth exploration? Are we afraid of WikiLeaks?
We hope to create an opportunity at Library Instruction West for conversation about why we share what we share and suppress what we suppress online. How do we privilege certain types of information over others? We also hope to open up space for librarians to discuss WikiLeaks as a source. What do we know about this source, and how might we teach with it? How does WikiLeaks figure into our conversations about misinformation and propaganda?

avatar for Stacy Brinkman

Stacy Brinkman

Head of Education and Outreach, University of California, Irvine
avatar for Brian Williams

Brian Williams

Research Librarian for Criminology, Law & Society, Political Science, U.S. & California Government, University of California Irvine
My interests run to WikiLeaks, Whistleblowers, Algorithms, The First Amendment, Crime, ... [boots selvedge denim dark deafening music mr robot lars von trier]

Friday July 24, 2020 11:00am - 12:15pm AST
HUB 334 (Seats 60)

Attendees (1)