Firefox’s Test Pilot Program Launches Three New Experimental Features

Earlier this year we launched our first set of experiments for Test Pilot, a program designed to give you access to experimental Firefox features that are in the early stages of development. We’ve been delighted to see so many of you participating in the experiments and providing feedback, which ultimately, will help us determine which features end up in Firefox for all to enjoy.

Since our launch, we’ve been hard at work on new innovations, and today we’re excited to announce the release of three new Test Pilot experiments. These features will help you share and manage screenshots; keep streaming video front and center; and protect your online privacy.

What Are The New Experiments?

Min Vid:

Keep your favorite entertainment front and center. Min Vid plays your videos in a small window on top of your other tabs so you can continue to watch while answering email, reading the news or, yes, even while you work. Min Vid currently supports videos hosted by YouTube and Vimeo.

Page Shot:

The print screen button doesn’t always cut it. The Page Shot feature lets you take, find and share screenshots with just a few clicks by creating a link for easy sharing. You’ll also be able to search for your screenshots by their title, and even the text captured in the image, so you can find them when you need them.

Tracking Protection:

We’ve had Tracking Protection in Private Browsing for a while, but now you can block trackers that follow you across the web by default. Turn it on, and browse free and breathe easy. This experiment will help us understand where Tracking Protection breaks the web so that we can improve it for all Firefox users.

How do I get started?

Test Pilot experiments are currently available in English only. To activate Test Pilot and help us build the future of Firefox, visit testpilot.firefox.com.

As you’re experimenting with new features within Test Pilot, you might find some bugs, or lose some of the polish from the general Firefox release, so Test Pilot allows you to easily enable or disable features at any time.

Your feedback will help us determine what ultimately ends up in Firefox – we’re looking forward to your thoughts!

Help Fix Copyright: Send a Rebellious Selfie to European Parliament (Really!)

The EU’s proposed copyright reform keeps in place retrograde laws that make many normal online creative acts illegal. The same restrictive laws will stifle innovation and hurt technology businesses. Let’s fix it. Sign Mozilla’s petition, watch and share videos, and snap a rebellious selfie

Earlier this month, the EU Commission released their proposal for a reformed copyright framework. In response, we are asking everyone reading this post to take a rebellious selfie and send that doctored snapshot to EU Parliament. Seem ridiculous? So is an outdated law that bans taking and sharing selfies in front of the Eiffel Tower at night in Paris, or in front of the Little Mermaid in Copenhagen.

Of course, no one is actually going to jail for subversive selfies. But the technical illegality of such a basic online act underscores the grave shortcomings in the EU’s latest proposal on copyright reform. As Mozilla’s Denelle Dixon-Thayer noted in her last post on the proposed reform, it “thoroughly misses the goal to deliver a modern reform that would unlock creativity and innovation.” It doesn’t, for instance, include needed exceptions for panorama, parody, or remixing, nor does it include a clause that would allow noncommercial transformations of works (like remixes, or mashups) or a flexible user clause like an open norm, or fair dealing.

Translation? Making memes and gifs will remain an illicit act.

And that’s just the start. Exceptions for text and data mining are limited to public institutions. This could stifle startups looking to online data to build innovative businesses. Then there is the dangerous “neighbouring right,” similar to the ancillary copyright laws we’ve seen in Spain and Germany (which have been clear failures, respectively). This misguided part of the reform would allow online publishers to copyright “press publications” for up to 20 years, with retroactive effect. The vague wording makes it unclear exactly to whom and for whom this new exclusive right would apply.

Finally, another unclear provision would require any internet service that provides access to “large amounts” of works to users to broker agreements with rightsholders for the use of, and protection of, their works. This could include the use of “effective content recognition technologies” — which imply universal monitoring and strict filtering technologies that identify and/or remove copyrighted content.

These proposals, if adopted as they are, would deal a blow to EU startups, to independent coders, creators, and artists, and to the health of the internet as a driver for economic growth and innovation.

We’re not advocating plagiarism or piracy. Creators must be treated fairly, including proper remuneration, for their creations and works. Mozilla wants to improve copyright for everyone,  so individuals are not discouraged from creating and innovating.

Mozilla isn’t alone in our objections: Over 50,000 individuals have signed our petition and demanded modern copyright laws that foster creativity, innovation, and opportunity online.

We have our work cut out for us. As the European Parliament revises the proposal this fall, we need a movement — a collection of passionate internet users who demand better, modern laws. Today, Mozilla is launching a public education campaign to support that movement.

post-crimes

Mozilla has created an app to highlight the absurdity of some of Europe’s outdated copyright laws. Try Post Crimes: Take a selfie in front of European landmarks that can be technically unlawful to photograph — like the Eiffel Tower’s night-time light display, or the Little Mermaid in Denmark — due to restrictive copyright laws.

Then, send your selfie as a postcard to your Member of the European Parliament (MEP). Show European policymakers how outdated copyright laws are, and encourage them to forge a more future-looking and innovation-friendly copyright reform.

We’ve also created three short videos that outline the need for reform. They’re educational, playful, and a little bit weird — just like the internet. But they explore a serious issue: The harmful effect outdated and restrictive copyright laws have on our creativity and the open internet. We hope you’ll watch them and share them with others.

We need your help standing up for better copyright laws. When you sign the petition, snap a selfie, or share our videos, you’re supporting creativity, innovation and opportunity online — for everyone.

Latest Firefox Expands Multi-Process Support and Delivers New Features for Desktop and Android

With the change of the season, we’ve worked hard to release a new version of Firefox that delivers the best possible experience across desktop and Android.

Expanding Multiprocess Support

Last month, we began rolling out the most significant update in our history, adding multiprocess capabilities to Firefox on desktop, which means Firefox is more responsive and less likely to freeze. In fact, our initial tests show a 400% improvement in overall responsiveness.

Our first phase of the rollout included users without add-ons. In this release, we’re expanding support for a small initial set of compatible add-ons as we move toward a multiprocess experience for all Firefox users in 2017.

Desktop Improvement to Reader Mode

This update also brings two improvements to Reader Mode. This feature strips away clutter like buttons, ads and background images, and changes the page’s text size, contrast and layout for better readability. Now we’re adding the option for the text to be read aloud, which means Reader Mode will narrate your favorite articles, allowing you to listen and browse freely without any interruptions.

We also expanded the ability to customize in Reader Mode so you can adjust the text and fonts, as well as the voice. Additionally, if you’re a night owl like some of us, you can read in the dark by changing the theme from light to dark.

Offline Page Viewing on Android

On Android, we’re now making it possible to access some previously viewed pages when you’re offline or have an unstable connection. This means you can interact with much of your previously viewed content when you don’t have a connection. The feature works with many pages, though it is dependent on your specific device specs. Give it a try by opening Firefox while your phone is in airplane mode.

We’re continuing to work on updates and new features that make your Firefox experience even better. Download the latest Firefox for desktop and Android and let us know what you think.

Commission Proposal to Reform Copyright is Inadequate

The draft directive released today thoroughly misses the goal to deliver a modern reform that would unlock creativity and innovation in the Single Market.

Today the EU Commission released their proposal for a reformed copyright framework. What has emerged from Brussels is disheartening. The proposal is more of a regression than the reform we need to support European businesses and Internet users.

To date, over 30,000 citizens have signed our petition urging the Commission to update EU copyright law for the 21st century. The Commission’s proposal needs substantial improvement.  We collectively call on the EU institutions to address the many deficits in the text released today in subsequent iterations of this political process.

The proposal fails to bring copyright in line with the 21st century

The proposal does little to address much-needed exceptions to copyright law. It provides some exceptions for education and preservation of cultural heritage. Still, a new exception for text and data mining (TDM), which would advance EU competitiveness and research, is limited to public interest research institutions (Article 3). This limitation could ultimately restrict, rather than accelerate, TDM to unlock research and innovation across sectors throughout Europe.

These exceptions are far from sufficient. There are no exceptions for panorama, parody, or remixing. We also regret that provisions which would add needed flexibility to the copyright system — such as a UGC (user-generated content) exception and an flexible user clause like an open norm, fair dealing or fair use — have not been included. Without robust exceptions, and provisions that bring flexibility and a future-proof element, copyright law will continue to chill innovation and experimentation.

Pursuing the ‘snippet tax’ on the EU level will undermine competition, access to knowledge

The proposal calls for ancillary copyright protection, or a ‘snippet tax’. Ancillary copyright would allow online publishers to copyright ‘press publications’, which is broadly defined to cover works that have the purpose of providing “information related to news or other topics and published in any media under the initiative, editorial responsibility and control of a service provider” (Article 2(4)). This content would remain under copyright for 20 years after its publication — an eternity online. This establishment of a new exclusive right would limit the free flow of knowledge, cripple competition, and hinder start-ups and small- and medium-sized businesses. It could, for example, require bloggers linking out to other sites to pay new and unnecessary fees for the right to direct additional traffic to existing sites, even though having the snippet would benefit both sides.

Ancillary copyright has already failed miserably in both Germany and Spain. Including such an expansive exclusive right at the EU level is puzzling.

The proposal establishes barriers to entry for startups, coders, and creators

Finally, the proposal calls for an increase in intermediaries’ liability. Streaming services like YouTube, Spotify, and Vimeo, or any ISPs that “provide to the public access to large amounts of works or other subject-matter uploaded by their users” (Article 13(1)), will be obliged to broker agreements with rightsholders for the use of, and protection of their works. Such measures could include the use of “effective content recognition technologies”, which imply universal monitoring and strict filtering technologies that identify and/or remove copyrighted content. This is technically challenging — and more importantly, would disrupt the very foundations that make many online activities possible in the EU. For example, putting user generated content in the crosshairs of copyright takedowns. Only the largest companies would be able to afford the complex software required to comply if these measures are deemed obligatory, resulting in a further entrenchment of the power of large platforms at the expense of EU startups and free expression online.

These proposals, if adopted as they are, would deal a blow to EU startups, to independent coders, creators, and artists, and to the health of the internet as a driver for economic growth and innovation. The Parliament certainly has its work cut out for it. We reiterate the call from 24 organisations in a joint letter expressing many of these concerns and urge the European Commission to publish the results of the Related rights and Panorama exception public consultation.

We look forward to working toward a copyright reform that takes account of the range of stakeholders who are affected by copyright law. And we will continue to advocate for an EU copyright reform that accelerates innovation and creativity in the Digital Single Market.

Cybersecurity is a Shared Responsibility

There have been far too many “incidents” recently that demonstrate the Internet is not as secure as it needs to be. Just in the past few weeks, we’ve seen countless headlines about online security breaches. From the alleged hack of the National Security Agency’s “cyberweapons” to the hack of the Democratic National Committee emails, and even recent iPhone security vulnerabilities, these stories reinforce how crucial it is to focus on security.

Internet security is like a long chain and each link needs to be tested and re-tested to ensure its strength. When the chain is broken, bad things happen: a website that holds user credentials (e.g., email addresses and passwords) is compromised because of weak security; user credentials are stolen; and, those stolen credentials are then used to attack other websites to gain access to even more valuable information about the user.

One weak link can break the chain of security and put Internet users at risk. The chain only remains strong if technology companies, governments, and users work together to keep the Internet as safe as it can be.

Technology companies must focus on security.

Technology companies need to develop proactive, pro-user cybersecurity technology solutions.

We must invest in creating a secure platform. That means supporting things like adopting and standardizing secure protocols, building features that improve security, and empowering users with education and better tools for their security.

At Mozilla, we have security features like phishing and malware protection built into Firefox. We started one of the first Bug Bounty programs in 2004 because we want to be informed about any vulnerabilities found in our software so we can fix them quickly. We also support the security of the broader open source ecosystem (not just Mozilla developed products). We launched the Secure Open Source (SOS) Fund as part of the Mozilla Open Source Support program to support security audits and the development of patches for widely used open source technologies.

Still, there is always room for improvement. The recent headlines show that the threat to user safety online is real, and it’s increasing. We can all do better, and do more.

Governments must work with technology companies.  

Cybersecurity is a shared responsibility and governments need to do their part. Governments need to help by supporting security solutions that no individual company can tackle, instead of advancing policies that just create weak links in the chain.

Encryption, something we rely on to keep people’s information secure online everyday, is under attack by governments because of concerns that it inadvertently protects the bad guys. Some governments have proposed actions that weaken encryption, like in the case between Apple and the FBI earlier this year. But encryption is not optional – and creating backdoors for governments, even for investigations, compromises the security of all Internet users.

The Obama Administration just appointed the first Federal Chief Information Security officer as part of the Cybersecurity National Action Plan. I’m looking forward to seeing how this role and other efforts underway can help government and technology companies work better together, especially in the area of security vulnerabilities. Right now, there’s not a clear process for how governments disclose security vulnerabilities they discover to affected companies.

While lawful hacking by a government might offer a way to catch the bad guys, stockpiling vulnerabilities for long periods of time can further weaken that security chain. For example, the recent alleged attack and auction of the NSA’s “cyberweapons” resulted in the public release of code, files, and “zero day” vulnerabilities that gave companies like Cisco and Fortinet just that- zero days to develop fixes before they were possibly exploited by hackers. There aren’t transparent and accountable policies in place that ensure the government is handling vulnerabilities appropriately and disclosing them to affected companies. We need to make this a priority to protect user security online.

Users can take easy and simple steps to strengthen the security chain.   

Governments and companies can’t do this without you. Users should always update their software to benefit from new security features and fixes, create strong passwords to guard your private information, and use available resources to become educated digital citizens. These steps don’t just protect people who care about their own security, they help create a more secure system and go a long way in making it harder to break the chain.

Working together is the only way to protect the security of the Internet for the billions of people online. We’re dedicated to this as part of our mission and we will continue our work to advance these issues.

Fighting Back Against Secrecy Orders

Mozilla today is joining a coalition of technology companies, including Apple, Lithium, and Twilio, in filing an amicus brief in support of Microsoft’s case against indiscriminate use of gag orders. Such orders prevent companies from notifying users about government requests for their data.

Transparency is the core pillar for everything we do at Mozilla. It is foundational to how we build our products, with an open code base that anybody can inspect, and is critical to our vision of an open, trusted, secure web that places users in control of their experience online. Our reform efforts in the areas of vulnerability disclosure and government surveillance are also centered on the transparency ideal.

And transparency  – or more appropriately the lack thereof – is why we care about this case.  When requesting user data, these gag orders are sometimes issued without the government demonstrating why the gag order is necessary. Worse yet, the government often issues indefinite orders that prevent companies from notifying users even years later, long after everyone would agree the gag order is no longer needed. These actions needlessly sacrifice transparency without justification. That’s foolish and unacceptable.

We have yet to receive a gag order that would prevent us from notifying a user about a request for data. Nonetheless, we believe it is wrong for the government to indefinitely delay a company from providing user notice. We said this when we released our transparency report in May, and we said then that we would take steps to enforce this belief. That is just what we’ve done today.

EU Copyright Law Undermines Innovation and Creativity on the Internet. Mozilla is Fighting for Reform

Mozilla has launched a petition — and will be releasing public education videos — to reform outdated copyright law in the EU

 

The internet is an unprecedented platform for innovation, opportunity and creativity. It’s where artists create; where coders and entrepreneurs build game-changing technology; where educators and researchers unlock progress; and where everyday people live their lives.

The internet brings new ideas to life everyday, and helps make existing ideas better. As a result, we need laws that protect and enshrine the internet as an open, collaborative platform.

But in the EU, certain laws haven’t caught up with the internet. The current copyright legal framework is outdated. It stifles opportunity and prevents — and in many cases, legally prohibits — artists, coders and everyone else from creating and innovating online. This framework was enacted before the internet changed the way we live. As a result, these laws clash with life in the 21st century.

Copyright

Here are just a few examples of outdated copyright law in the EU:

  • It’s illegal to share a picture of the Eiffel Tower light display at night. The display is copyrighted — and tourists don’t have the artists’ express permission.
  • In some parts of the EU, making a meme is technically unlawful. There is no EU-wide fair use exception.
  • In some parts of the EU, educators can’t screen films or share teaching materials in the classroom due to restrictive copyright law.

It’s time our laws caught up with our technology. Now is the time to make a difference: This fall, the European Commission plans to reform the EU copyright framework.

Mozilla is calling on the EU Commission to enact reform. And we’re rallying and educating citizens to do the same. Today, Mozilla is launching a campaign to bring copyright law into the 21st century. Citizens can read and sign our petition. When you add your name, you’re supporting three big reforms:

1. Update EU copyright law for the 21st century.

Copyright can be valuable in promoting education, research, and creativity — if it’s not out of date and excessively restrictive. The EU’s current copyright laws were passed in 2001, before most of us had smartphones. We need to update and harmonise the rules so we can tinker, create, share, and learn on the internet. Education, parody, panorama, remix and analysis shouldn’t be unlawful.

2. Build in openness and flexibility to foster innovation and creativity.

Technology advances at a rapid pace, and laws can’t keep up. That’s why our laws must be future-proof: designed so they remain relevant in 5, 10 or even 15 years. We need to allow new uses of copyrighted works in order to expand growth and innovation. We need to build into the law flexibility — through a User Generated Content (UGC) exception and a clause like an open norm, fair dealing, or fair use — to empower everyday people to shape and improve the internet.

3. Don’t break the internet.

A key part of what makes the internet awesome is the principle of innovation without permission — that anyone, anywhere, can create and reach an audience without anyone standing in the way. But that key principle is under threat. Some people are calling for licensing fees and restrictions on internet companies for basic things like creating hyperlinks or uploading content. Others are calling for new laws that would mandate monitoring and filtering online. These changes would establish gatekeepers and barriers to entry online, and would risk undermining the internet as a platform for economic growth and free expression.

At Mozilla, we’re committed to an exceptional internet. That means fighting for laws that make sense in the 21st century. Are you with us? Voice your support for modern copyright law in the EU and sign the petition today.

Mozilla Awards $585,000 to Nine Open Source Projects in Q2 2016

“People use Tails to chat off-the-record, browse the web anonymously, and share sensitive documents. Many human rights defenders depend on Tails to do their daily work, if not simply to stay alive.” – Tails developer team

“We think that the Web will only be truly open when we own the means of locating information in the billions of documents at our disposal. Creating PeARS is a way to put the ownership of the Web back into people’s hands.” – Aurelie Herbelot, PeARS

“Item 4 of Mozilla’s Manifesto states, ‘Individuals’ security and privacy on the Internet are fundamental and must not be treated as optional.’ This is the primary philosophy behind Caddy, the first and only web server to use HTTPS by default.” –Matt Holt, Caddy

Last quarter’s Mozilla Open Source Support (MOSS)-awarded projects are diverse, but they have one thing in common: they believe in innovation for public benefit. Projects like Tails, PeARS and Caddy are paving the way for the next wave of openness, which is why Mozilla has allocated over $3.5 million to the MOSS initiative in support of these and other open source projects. We’re excited to share the program’s progress this quarter, which includes $585,000 in awards, nine new projects supported and two new tracks launched.

We're Open

One of the new tracks is “Mission Partners”, which supports any open source project which meaningfully advances the Mozilla mission. We had a large number of applications in the initial round, of which we have already funded eight (for a total of $385,000) and are still considering several more. Applications for “Mission Partners” remain open on an ongoing basis.

The second is our “Secure Open Source” track, which works on improving the security of open source software by providing manual source code audits for important and widely-used pieces of free software. By the end of the second quarter we completed three audits – for the PCRE regular expression library, the libjpeg-turbo image decoding library, and the phpMyAdmin database administration software – with more in the pipeline. We hope that Secure Open Source will grow to be supported by multiple parties with an interest in improving the state of the Internet infrastructure – from companies to non-profits to governments. You can submit a suggestion for a project which might benefit from SOS support.

Our initial track, “Foundational Technology”, which supports projects that Mozilla already uses, integrates or deploys in our infrastructure, was launched late last year and remained open during this quarter. We made one additional award – to PyPy, the Python JIT compiler, for $200,000. Applications for a “Foundational Technology” award remain open.

Mozilla is proud to support the open source community of which we are a part and from which so many benefit. We look forward to enabling even more OS maintenance, improvement and innovation through MOSS, so please apply! The committee meets next in early September, so get your applications in by the end of August.

Exciting Improvements Delivered Today in Firefox for Desktop and Android

Today we’re proud to announce the initial rollout of multi-process Firefox for Desktop to our general audience. With this, we’re taking a major step forward in improving Firefox for Desktop. Users should experience a Firefox that is less susceptible to freezing and is generally more responsive to input, while retaining the experience and features that users love.

In Firefox 48, we aim to slowly enable multi-process Firefox (also known as Electrolysis or e10s) for release users, starting with one percent and ramping up to nearly half the Firefox Release if things go as expected. e10s promises to offer a major improvement to your browsing experience by separating Web content and Firefox UI processes. This means when a web page is consuming a large part of your computer’s processing power, your tabs, buttons and menus won’t lock up. Wondering if your Firefox instance has enabled e10s? Type “about:support” into the URL bar. If e10s is active, you’ll see 1/1 (Enabled by default) under the Multiprocess Windows line item.

In addition to making fundamental changes to how Firefox for Desktop will work in the future, today’s update also brings improvements to the browser design that make discovery even easier. First, we’re making the awesome bar even more awesome. Now when you enter a new query, you’ll see more suggestions than ever before and a wider view of your suggestions across the screen. This makes suggestions easier to read. You may also notice icons when a suggestion is recommending a site that is already in your bookmarks or open tabs.

We have redesigned the Discovery Pane at about:addons to help you  personalize your browsing experience. The new design simplifies installation for featured add-ons to just one click and uses clean images and text to quickly orient you as you explore Firefox.

Lastly, in the latest update, we are also shipping security improvements that enhance download protection in Firefox, which you can learn more about here.

We also have some  new features available in the latest version of Firefox for Android. Earlier this year, we experimented with rebooting bookmarks. Today, we’re rolling out these improvements by merging your Reading Lists into Bookmarks and your Synced tabs into the History Panel. This change means your reading list items will now be available across devices alongside your bookmarks, giving you easier access to your content no matter what device you’re using, which is a major upgrade for those of you using Firefox across devices.

Today, more people are watching web video than ever before. So we set out to improve the audio and video playback experience in Android. Now when you are playing a video within Firefox on an Android device and receive a call, your device will pause the video automatically, so you can focus on the call. We’ve also added a toolbar so you can quickly manage your audio controls within the app and streamlined the touch controls on all video content so it’s easier to use.

We’ll keep you updated as we continue to roll out Electrolysis over the next several months. In the meantime, download the latest Firefox for desktop and Android and let us know what you think.

Announcing the Second Cohort of Ford-Mozilla Open Web Fellows

The second class of fellows will embed at organizations like ColorOfChange and European Digital Rights to fight for privacy, literacy, and inclusion online

 

The internet is a global public resource. It has the ability to empower, educate, connect and uplift.

But like any other public resource, the internet faces serious threats. From tech monopolies and mass surveillance to policy that undermines net neutrality, openness and freedom online are in danger. With these threats also comes opportunity for more conversation and change. We can help shift more people from consuming the web to participating in it.

That’s why Ford Foundation and Mozilla launched the Open Web Fellows program two years ago: To empower a network of leaders capable of defending the open web. The Open Web Fellows program places bright technologists and activists on the front lines of the open internet movement. Last year, Ford and Mozilla placed six fellows at leading NGOs like Amnesty International and the ACLU, where they used their tech savvy to fight for issues like freedom of expression and gender equality online.

introduction

Today, Ford and Mozilla are proud to announce our second class of fellows: eight talented makers and doers hailing from five continents. Our fellows will bring their expertise in data visualization, design, development, storytelling, research and policy analysis — and a shared zeal for an open internet —  to eight international NGOs. Below, meet our fellows and their host organizations:

 

Steffania@2xSteffania Paola Costa di Albanez

@stepaola | Derechos Digitales

Steffania is a feminist, self-taught developer, multidisciplinary designer, and visual artist. She also works as a digital security and coding trainer. Steffania has collaborated with civil society organizations and independent groups in Brazil that engage with issues like solidarity economy, intersectional feminism, privacy, and free speech. Steffania uses her skills to help these organizations increase the impact of advocacy efforts, build websites, applications and data visualizations, and plan workshops and toolkits. As an Open Web Fellow, Steffania will be collaborating with Derechos Digitales to help the civil society sector in Latin America better promote human rights in the digital environment.

 

Eireann@2xÉireann Leverett

@blackswanburst |Éireann’s website | Privacy International

Éireann is an academic, a red teamer, and an entrepreneur, and has deep experience working with computer emergency response teams to protect critical infrastructures. Éireann is fascinated by malware, vulnerabilities, cryptography, networks, information theory, and economics — and he believes hacking can win victories for humanity. Currently, Éireann is Founder and CEO of Concinnity Risks and Senior Risk Researcher at Cambridge Centre for Risk Studies. As an Open Web Fellow, Éireann will be working with Privacy International’s Tech Team to analyze surveillance documentation and data, identify and analyze new technologies, and help develop briefings and educational programming with a technical understanding.

 

Jen@2xJennifer Helsby

@redshiftzero | Jennifer’s GitHub | Freedom of the Press Foundation

Jennifer is a data scientist and researcher passionate about using data and technology to catalyze social change. Previously, she was a postdoctoral researcher at the Center for Data Science and Public Policy at the University of Chicago, where she worked on applying machine learning methods to problems in public policy. Currently, Jennifer is a co-founder and CTO of Lucy Parsons Labs, a Chicago-based nonprofit that focuses on police accountability and surveillance oversight. She is also a co-organizer for Cryptoparty Chicago, which teaches everyday people about digital security. As an Open Web Fellow, Jennifer will be working with the Freedom of the Press Foundation to improve SecureDrop, an anonymous whistleblowing platform.

 

Berhan@2xBerhan Taye

@btayeg | Berhan’s blog | Center for Intellectual Property and Information Technology (CIPIT)

Berhan is a social justice activist, a peace studies practitioner, and an avid advocate for open data and the open web. Berhan previously worked at a Conflict Early Warning and Early Response Center mitigating violence in East Africa. She has also conducted research on transitional justice and criminal violence at the University of Notre Dame, consulted for intergovernmental bodies in Addis Ababa and Nairobi, and engaged legislative processes related to land rights in Cape Town. As an Open Web Fellow, Berhan will be based at the Center for Intellectual Property and Information Technology (CIPIT) at the Strathmore Law School in Nairobi, Kenya, focusing on internet freedom in Eastern Africa.

 

Etienne@2xEtienne Maynier

@tenacioustek | Citizen Lab

Etienne is a security engineer passionate about issues related to security and digital surveillance. He has worked on penetration testing and incident response for several years, and is now honing his focus on analyzing and better understanding how technologies are used to spy on citizens. Etienne believes in creating and fostering a robust public debate on privacy and surveillance issues. Etienne is a volunteer with Toulouse Hackerspace Factory. As an Open Web Fellow, Etienne will be based at Citizen Lab, an interdisciplinary laboratory based at the Munk School of Global Affairs, University of Toronto, focusing on projects like measuring Internet filtering and network interference and investigating malware attacks.

 

Sid@2xSiddharth (Sid) Rao

@sidnext2none | Sid’s website | European Digital Rights (EDRi)

Sid is a Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) enthusiast and a privacy fanatic who specializes in the security analysis of communication protocols. He is also passionate about internet services and infrastructure in developing nations. Sid co-founded the social venture ThirdEye, which builds affordable e-­readers for visually-challenged people. He is a past Erasmus Mundus fellow and holds double master’s degrees from Aalto University, Finland (Information and Network Security) and University of Tartu, Estonia (Cryptography). As an Open Web Fellow, Sid will be based at European Digital Rights (EDRi), where he will help define policies related to data protection, surveillance, copyright, and network neutrality.

 

Matt@2xMatt Mitchell

@geminiimatt | Matt’s website | ColorofChange

Matt is a security researcher, operational security trainer, and data journalist who leads CryptoHarlem, impromptu workshops teaching basic cryptography tools to the predominately African American community in upper Manhattan. Previously, he worked as a data journalist for The New York Times and as a developer for CNN, Aol/Huffington Post, and other news organizations. Matt currently trains activists and journalists in digital security, with a special focus on marginalized populations who are often aggressively monitored, over-policed, and disenfranchised. As an Open Web Fellow, Matt will be based at ColorOfChange pioneering tools and discovering compelling user engagement strategies.

 

Suchana@2xSuchana Seth

Data & Society

Suchana is a physicist-turned-data scientist from India. She has built scalable data science solutions and patent-pending applications in text mining and natural language processing for startups and industry research labs. Suchana believes in the power of data to drive positive change, and volunteers with DataKind to mentor data-for-good projects. She is also passionate about closing the gender gap in data science, and leads data science workshops with organizations like Women Who Code. As an Open Web Fellow, Suchana will be based at Data & Society, where she will enable data scientists and technology teams to better use anonymized data.