Protecting Your Personal Privacy in a Digital World

Surveillance Cameras          Laptop Spying           Spy Silhouette

Announcing a new workshop…

Protecting Your Personal Privacy in a Digital World

Date: Thursday, March 2, 2017, 11-12
Location: Digital Scholarship Center (DSC)
Sign Up (or just show up)

Date: Tuesday, March 21, 2017, 11-12
Location: Digital Scholarship Center (DSC)
Sign Up  (or just show up)
(Cancelled due to scheduling conflict)

Date: Thursday, March 23, 2017, 11-12
Location: Digital Scholarship Center (DSC)

We live in an age of pervasive digital surveillance, whether those prying eyes are marketers, hackers, governments, or employers. Learning the principles of online digital privacy is essential for navigating daily online activities, such as communicating with friends, engaging in social activism, or accessing a banking or credit card account.

This workshop will provide the tools and tips you need to make more informed decisions concerning your online activity. Here are some questions we will answer:

  • How can I manage all my passwords?
  • What options are available for browsing anonymously online?
  • Should I use the cloud to sync my devices?
  • How can I chat online privately?
  • What are some trusted sources for learning more about digital privacy and security?

Since each individual’s “threat model” is different, this workshop aims to provide practical information to help you think more clearly about your digital privacy needs. Our intended audience is the community of regular Internet users who wish to start thinking a little more systematically about their online activity.

Media, Pennsylvania: March 8, 1971

John Raines and family

 

John Raines teaching

In 2013 whistleblower Edward Snowden leaked thousands of classified documents and confirmed a vast National Security Agency spying program. Though there had been significant revelations before Snowden’s leaks, this new information made it impossible for the US government to deny the international scope of its intrusions into the privacy of individuals, organizations, and governments.

43 years earlier a group of eight middle class antiwar activists performed a similar public service, releasing internal FBI documents that revealed a pattern of abuse by J. Edgar Hoover and federal agents. The full story is told in a new book (Betty Medsger’s The Burglary) and a documentary film (1971, directed by Johanna Hamilton), both released in 2014. The Citizens’ Commission to Investigate the FBI, as they called themselves, burglarized the Media, Pennsylvania office of the FBI in the hopes of finding evidence of illegal FBI surveillance and disruption of the antiwar movement.

J. Edgar Hoover’s citadel was seemingly impregnable, built by decades of careful public relations and a comprehensive intelligence network. Though there was near certainty among antiwar activists and other protest groups of FBI malfeasance, there was no tangible evidence. After surveilling the Philadelphia FBI office and determining that it was too closely guarded, the Commission to Investigate the FBI looked to the FBI’s suburban offices for an opportunity.

After months of casing the Media, Pennsylvania office, the Citizens’ Commission to Investigate the FBI made its move on the night of the first historic Joe Frazier – Muhammad Ali fight, March 8, 1971. By sunrise the next day, the Citizens’ Commission had eight large suitcases of documents – the full contents of the Media FBI filing cabinets – secured in an isolated farmhouse, waiting to be organized and analyzed. Hundreds of FBI agents were assigned to investigate the Media break-in, but no one was ever charged with the crime. The disclosures that resulted from the Media burglary provided concrete evidence of illegal FBI activities.

John and Bonnie Raines were members of the Citizens’ Commission to Investigate the FBI. John Raines, now professor emeritus, has been at Temple University since he arrived from the Union Theological Seminary in 1966. John Raines spoke to me about his experiences with the Citizens’ Commission to Investigate the FBI on October 2, 2014.

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—Fred Rowland

Marketing Schools, Marketing Cities

Maia Cucchiara image

 

 

 

 

Maia Cucchiara’s new book, Marketing Schools, Marketing Cities: Who Wins and Who Loses When Schools Become Urban Amenities (University of Chicago Press, 2013), is a very timely intervention into the current debate about the troubled Philadelphia public school system. Most of the research for this book took place between 2004 and 2007 as part of her doctoral dissertation during the Philadelphia Center City Schools Initiative (CCSI), which sought to market and promote Center City public schools in an effort to retain middle and upper middle class Center City families from fleeing to the suburbs in search of better schools. She shines a light on this initiative by focusing on one school and one neighborhood, which she pseudonymously names “Grant Elementary School” and “Cobble Square”. In the course of her research, she interviewed parents, administrators, teachers, and local civic and business leaders, as well as participated in many events at Grant Elementary School.

One of the most important and illuminating aspects of Marketing Schools, Marketing Cities is the way it highlights the tensions between an urban area’s economic and civic space as citizens are increasingly seen as customers and consumers. What rights and duties do we have as citizens and how are those rights and duties constrained or enhanced when they are interpreted from a narrow economic perspective? On the one hand, retaining Center City families grows the tax base and potentially benefits all Philadelphia schools, given that schools are financed primarily through real estate taxes. On the other hand, how does one justify directing additional resources to Center City schools at a time when there are so many disadvantaged schools in the outlying neighborhoods? The tensions that Maia Cucchiara investigates in Marketing Schools, Marketing Cities are still very much with us today and make this book a “must read” for anyone interested in Philadelphia public schools and the future of public education.

I spoke with Maia Cucchiara on September 19, 2013.

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—Fred Rowland

 

 

 

2011-2012 Library Prize Winners!

Here are the winners of this year’s Library Prize for Undergraduate Research and the Library Prize for Undergraduate Research on Sustainability & the Environment.
Please join us on Tuesday, May 1 at 4 PM in the Paley Lecture Hall for the Awards Ceremony. The winners and their faculty sponsors will discuss the prize-winning papers. Refreshments provided.

Library Prize for Undergraduate Research

  • Summer Beckley, “A Crisis of Identity: Advertising & the British Ministry of Information’s Propaganda Posters of World War II”
    History 4997, Advisor: Richard Immerman
  • Afrora Muca, “From Classroom to Battlefield: The Role of Students in the Closing of Carlisle Indian Industrial School, 1918″
    History 4997, Advisor: Andrew Isenberg
  • Eugene Tsvilik, “No Enemies to the Left: The Communist Party of the United States and Crises of International Communism, 1956-1968″
    History 4997, Advisor: Petra Goedde

Library Prize for Undergraduate Research on Sustainability & the Environment

  • Anthony Shields, Jenna Fink, Hasan Malik, Nicola Horscroft
    “The treatment of drinking water using polymeric sorbents”
    Engineering 4296
    Faculty: Huichun (Judy) Zhang
  • Brian Davidson, Fiona Farrelly, Thomson Liang, Melissa MacKinnon
    “Sustainable and efficient rope pump”
    Engineering 4296
    Faculty: Robert J. Ryan
  • (Honorable Mention)
    Rachel Maddaluna
    “Mitigation of climate change and species loss through avoided deforestation”
    Biology 4391
    Faculty: Brent Sewall


—Fred Rowland

Architects of Piety: The Interview

In 2011 Temple University religion professor Vasiliki Limberis published Architects of Piety: The Cappadocian Fathers and the Cult of the Martyrs (Oxford University Press). In this new work, she provides a novel interpretation of the lives and works of Basil of Caesarea, Gregory of Nyssa, and Gregory of Nazianzus. Though they are mainly known as the principle architects of the Christian Trinitarian doctrine, Professor Limbers shows that the “cult of the martyrs” was central to the theology, worship, practice, and organization of Christianity in fourth century Cappadocia. The Architects of Piety opens up an exciting new line of research into the world of early Christianity. On January 18, Professor Limberis stopped by my office to discuss her new book.

Audio Download Link (for later)

—Fred Rowland

Using LexisNexis Congressional

I was recently reading this article, Wealthy Reap Rewards While Those Who Work Lose, and came upon this paragraph: “‘The nation’s jobs crisis is so catastrophic that, unless Congress acts on the scale of the New Deal, millions of Americans will experience extremely long periods of unemployment for many years ahead,’ Lawrence Mishel, president of the Economic Policy Institute, told a panel of the Committee on Ways and Means recently.” I wanted to read exactly what Lawrence Mishel said in his testimony before the Committee. This provided a perfect opportunity to use LexisNexis Congressional, which indexes (and often provides full-text to) committee transcripts and hearings. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Go into LexisNexis Congressional and click on the Advanced Search tab
  2. Make sure just the Hearings box is checked
  3. From the search dropdown box, select Witness
  4. In the search field type: Mishel, Lawrence
  5. Click Search And, Voila! You’ll get this citation: [Job Creation], CIS-NO: Not Yet Assigned, SOURCE: Committee on Appropriations. Senate, DOC-TYPE: Hearing , DATE: Jan. 21, 2010., CIS/Index

From there, it’s easy to find your way to the full-text. Watch this SCREENCAST to see how it’s done.

Interviews: Library Prize Winners 2010

Interviews with the winners of the 2010 Library Prize for Undergraduate Research are now available.

bermudez.jpgDonald Bermudez speaking at the Library Prize Awards Ceremony, May 5, 2010

Donald Bermudez – author of Keystone of the Keystone: The Falls of the Delaware and Bucks County 1609-1692 (History 4997) – and faculty sponsor Rita Krueger are interviewed by Adam Shambaugh

 

hussey.jpgBrian Hussey speaking at the Library Prize Awards Ceremony, May 5, 2010

Brian Hussey – author of Setting the Agenda: The Effects of Administration Debates and the President’s Personal Imperatives on Forming Foreign Policy During the Reagan Administration (History 4997) – and faculty sponsor Rita Krueger are interviewed by Fred Rowland

 

young.jpgCharise Young speaking at the Library Prize Awards Ceremony, May 5, 2010

Charise Young – author of African American Women’s Basketball in the 1920s and 1930s: Active Participants in the “New Negro” Movement (History 4296) – and faculty sponsor Bettye Collier-Thomas are interviewed by Fred Rowland

For more information on this year’s winners and honorable mentions, go to the Winners page.

Refworks 2.0 beta available

When you log into Refworks, you now have the option to try out the Refworks 2.0 beta version. Just click on the link in the upper right corner for “Refworks 2.0.” When using Refworks 2.0, you will have access to all the citations in your Refworks database. From Refworks 2.0, you can switch back to the traditional interface by clicking “Refworks Classic” in the upper right corner. Make sure you save any new work before switching between the two interfaces.

Refworks 2.0 preview RW2.jpg —Fred Rowland