Posted on 07/18/2022 at 12:00 PM by Sadye Scott-Hainchek

It’s not news that efforts to challenge and ban books involve organization and group training.

MIT Technology Review reports, however, that this training is going beyond petitions, letter-writing, and meeting attendance.

It’s now, in some places, addressing how to scrutinize and weaponize educators’ personal social media accounts, in retaliation for offering diverse books to students.

A group called County Citizens Defending Freedom, which declined to comment to reporters, offered a seminar earlier this month on how to research "social media of teachers, school board members, staff of school districts and elected officials."

Jonathan Friedman, the director of Free Expression and Education at PEN America, said it's the first "deliberate effort to track or monitor teachers and staff" that he's seen since he started watching book-challenge efforts last summer.

Unfortunately, CCDF isn't the only such group; MIT Technology Review noted that Moms for Liberty, Moms for Libraries, and the Leadership Institute are also encouraging members to monitor educators on social media.

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Categories: Today in Books

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