Unleashing the Potential of Citizen Witnesses

With more witnesses from more regions equipped to document their communities, how can we in the human rights, media, and technology fields help realize the potential of citizen reporters?

Citizen Video for Journalists: Contextualization

Citizen videos can provide as many questions as answers. Lara Setrakian of Syria Deeply discusses how to contextualize citizen reporting and avoid information overload.

InformaCam Rises to the Knight News Challenge

The same information that journalists and judges use to verify a human rights video is what repressive regimes use to identify and target activists. How can video activists stay credible and safe? …with InformaCam.

Is This For Real? How InformaCam Improves Verification of Mobile Media Files

There is currently a deluge of media coming from the world’s mobile devices for potential use as evidence or trusted sources for journalists. WITNESS and the Guardian Project are working to provide a mechanism, InformaCam, to verify and authenticate this footage.

You Are Being Watched: What Faceprints Mean for Generation Y

On July 18, YouTube launched a new tool that would enable users to blur the faces in the videos they uploaded, thereby protecting the identities of people featured in them. The platform explicitly identified the human rights threat as a primary motivator for this online technological development.

Visual Anonymity and YouTube’s New Blurring Tool

Today YouTube announced a new tool within their upload editor that enables people to blur the faces within the video, and then publish a version with blurred faces.

WITNESS Enters Knight’s #NewsChallenge With SecureSmartCam App

We’ve entered the Knight Foundation News Challenge with the SecureSmartCam (SSC), our collaboration with The Guardian Project.

Introducing InformaCam, The Next Release of the SecureSmartCam Project

Recently my colleague at The Guardian Project, Harlo Holmes wrote about the InformCam, the latest release from the joint collaboration between The Guardian Project and WITNESS, the SecureSmartCamera (SSC). This is an important development in the project as it incorporates all of the key themes in the WITNESS Leadership Initiative.

Amy Robbins: Join Me In Supporting WITNESS For the Next 20 Years

As WITNESS celebrates its 20th anniversary this year, I wanted to write a brief note to describe why I support this outstanding, and vital organization. I know many of you reading this share my view because you, too, strongly support WITNESS’s efforts.

A Few Reasons Activsts Shouldn’t be Banned from the Internet

Last month on Human Rights Day (December 10th) I wrote an opinion piece for the HuffingtonPost about the increasingly important role technology companies and platforms are playing in the human rights landscape.

U.S. Needs Strong Privacy Protections for Digital Communications

One of the most cherished rights in the United States is the Constitution’s Fourth Amendment protection against unreasonable government searches, which has long protected the privacy of Americans’ homes and communications. But as technology has rapidly advanced, this right—long a crown jewel of U.S. civil liberties—has not been fully applied to protect digital communications.

Promoting Cameras Everywhere Recommendations at RightsCon and Stanford University

This week, WITNESS is busy in the Bay Area of California where we’ll be at multiple public meetings discussing ideas in our Cameras Everywhere leadership initiative. We’re speaking on a panel at the first Silicon Valley Human Rights Conference, attending the first advisory board meeting of the exciting new EngineRoom initiative, and we’re presenting at Stanford University’s Liberation Technology Seminar on the “Cameras Everywhere” report and the tools we’re developing in WITNESS Labs.

Setting a Global Standard for Human Rights and Technology Companies

In a world with more than five billion mobile phone subscribers and where 48 hours of video footage is being uploaded to YouTube every minute, the challenges navigating the nexus of human rights and technology are too complicated for any single company or human rights activist to manage on their own.

How Funders Can Support Technology for Human Rights and the Activists Using It

Sameer Padania, the lead author/researcher of our “Cameras Everywhere” report spoke recently at “The Power of Information” conference in London, organized by the Indigo Trust, the Institute for Philanthropy and the Omidyar Network.

#Video4change Weekly Digest: Sept. 9, 2011

It’s been an exciting week here at WITNESS. We released our “Cameras Everywhere” report and many of us have been sharing it and we’re looking forward to discussion to come. The report surveys the current landscape of human rights, video and technology and makes recommendations to a variety of players in that landscape from technology companies to policy makers and civil society organizations.