Reporters Without Borders has opened a shelter in Paris that will be used by journalists, bloggers and dissidents as a place to learn how to circumvent censorship, protect their online communications and maintain their anonymity. From the press release:
“At a time when online filtering and surveillance is becoming more and more widespread, we are making an active commitment to an Internet that is unrestricted and accessible to all by providing the victims of censorship with the means of protecting their online information,” Reporters Without Borders said. “Never before have there been so many netizens in prison in countries such as China, Vietnam and Iran for expressing their views freely online,” the press freedom organisation added. “Anonymity is becoming more and more important for those who handle sensitive data.”
Reporters Without Borders and the communications security firm XeroBank have formed a partnership in order to make high-speed anonymity services, including encrypted email and web access, available free of charge to those who user the Shelter. By connecting to XeroBank through a Virtual Private Network (VPN), their traffic is routed across its gigabit backbone network and passes from country to country mixed with tens of thousands of other users, creating a virtually untraceable high-speed anonymity network.
Susannah Vila writes about an opportunity to contribute to a new network for young digital activists:
The Alliance for Youth Movements (AYM) is a non-profit organization dedicated to identifying, connecting, and supporting digital activists from around the world. AYM’s website, Movements.org , will serve as a hub for discussion, resources, and news about digital activism around the world.
The website features a series of case studies. AYM case studies tell the stories of people or organizations that have identified and used new technologies to successfully address societal problems—particularly those who have bolstered their efforts with new technologies. In each case study, we present the challenge faced and describe the course of action taken to address it. We paint a picture of the activists or social entrepreneurs involved, describe the pitfalls and advantages of the steps they took to address the initial challenge, and evaluate the current state of their projects, discussing goals met, goals for the future, and unresolved issues. The broad goal of AYM's case studies is to identify tactics and lessons learned that will be helpful to other activists and social entrepreneurs around the world.
Below are some examples of social change projects that we have already written cases about: