ALA Press Release

For Immediate Release
May 7, 2012

ALA Annual Conference Opening Session to address internet privacy

CHICAGO – Internet privacy and the corrosion of civil liberties through surveillance, data collection and government censorship will be the focus of the Opening Session at the 2012 American Library Association (ALA) Annual Conference.
The keynote speaker at the event, held from 4 – 5:15 p.m. on June 22, will be global Internet policy expert and author Rebecca MacKinnon. An expert on privacy rights, MacKinnon believes that technology should be harnessed to support the rights and liberties of users around the world; a belief that libraries and librarians fight to uphold every day.
In her new book, “Consent of the Networked” (Basic Books), MacKinnon warns that a convergence of unchecked government actions and unaccountable company practices threaten the future of democracy and human rights everywhere.
MacKinnon works on global Internet policy as a Schwartz Senior Fellow at the New America Foundation, where she conducts research, writes and advocates on such issues as global Internet policy, free expression and the impact of digital technologies on human rights. She is co-founder of Global Voices, an international citizen media network and a former fellow at Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society. She also serves on the board of the Committee to Protect Journalists and worked for 12 years as a journalist in Asia, including as CNN’s Bureau Chief in Tokyo and Beijing.
The American Library Association is the oldest and largest library association in the world, with approximately 60,000 members. Its mission is to promote the highest quality library and information services and public access to information.
For more information on the 2012 ALA Annual Conference, please visit the ALA Conference Web site at, or contact ALA Media Relations Manager Macey Morales at (312) 280-4393,, or ALA PR Coordinator Jennifer Petersen at (312) 280-5043,
Jennifer Petersen
ALA Media Relations