EFF Tells Supreme Court: User Speech Must Be Protected

The Supreme Court is about to hear a case that could dramatically affect users’ speech rights online. EFF has filed a brief explaining what’s at stake, and urging the court to preserve the key law protecting user expression, 47 U.S.C § 230 (Section 230.) In Gonzalez v. Google, the petitioning plaintiffs make a radical argument about Section 230. They have asked the Supreme Court to rule that Section 230 doesn’t protect recommendations we get online, or how certain content gets arranged and displayed. According to the plaintiffs, U.S. law allows website and app owners to be sued if they make…

For Would-Be Censors and the Thin-Skinned, Copyright Law Offers Powerful Tools

We’re taking part in Copyright Week, a series of actions and discussions supporting key principles that should guide copyright policy. Every day this week, various groups are taking on different elements of copyright law and policy, and addressing what’s at stake, and what we need to do to make sure that copyright promotes creativity and innovation. Yesterday, we wrote about the importance of fair use as a safeguard for free expression. But all too often, fair use and other legal limits on copyright are not enough to stop copyright enforcement from serving as cover for silencing critics.  Time and again,…

Right to Repair Advocates Have Had Good Victories. We Have To Keep Fighting.

It’s been a good year for right to repair advocates. Colorado passed an important law to allow wheelchair users access to resources they need to fix their own chairs. The Federal Trade Commission has stepped up enforcement of companies that limit the right to repair. And New York made history by passing the first broad consumer right to repair legislation at the end of 2022, requiring some digital electronics manufacturers to provide access to parts, tools, and information necessary for repairing their products. Thank you to everyone who wrote in to support these bills, and especially to our allies in…

Have You Tried Turning It Off and On Again: Rethinking Tech Regulation and Creative Labor

We’re taking part in Copyright Week, a series of actions and discussions supporting key principles that should guide copyright policy. Every day this week, various groups are taking on different elements of copyright law and policy, and addressing what’s at stake, and what we need to do to make sure that copyright promotes creativity and innovation. “The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which.” –George Orwell, Animal Farm The Internet Copyright Wars are in their third decade, and despite…

Open Data and the AI Black Box

We’re taking part in Copyright Week, a series of actions and discussions supporting key principles that should guide copyright policy. Every day this week, various groups are taking on different elements of copyright law and policy, and addressing what’s at stake and what we need to do to make sure that copyright promotes creativity and innovation. Artificial Intelligence (AI) grabs headlines with new tools like ChatGPT and DALL-E 2, but it is already here and having major impacts on our lives. Increasingly we see law enforcement, medical care, schools and workplaces all turning to the black box of AI to…

Digital Rights Updates with EFFector 35.1

It’s a new year! There’s no better time to keep up with the latest updates on your digital rights. Version 35, issue 1 of our EFFector newsletter is out now. Catch up on the latest EFF news by reading our newsletter or listening to the audio version below. This issue covers a collection of EFF’s 2022 Year in Review posts (seriously, there are a lot of them!) as well as some upcoming events EFF will be attending and even new job postings. LISTEN ON YouTube EFFECTOR 35.1 – Digital Rights In Review 2022 Make sure you never miss an issue…

It’s Copyright Week 2023: Join Us in the Fight for Better Copyright Law and Policy

We’re taking part in Copyright Week, a series of actions and discussions supporting key principles that should guide copyright policy. Every day this week, various groups are taking on different elements of copyright law and policy, and addressing what’s at stake, and what we need to do to make sure that copyright promotes creativity and innovation. One of the interesting side effects of the internet is that more people than ever are aware of copyright. Pretty much everyone online has seen some version of the “this media is no longer available due to a copyright claim” notice on something they…

Kurt Opsahl Moves to EFF Special Counsel

Longtime EFFer and Deputy Executive Director and General Counsel Kurt Opsahl will be moving on from the Electronic Frontier Foundation after nearly 20 years, on February 1. But we aren’t going to let him go too far: Kurt will continue on as a Special Counsel of EFF.  Kurt will be joining the Filecoin Foundation as Associate General Counsel for Cybersecurity and Civil Liberties Policy. Kurt joined EFF in 2004, and has been a key part of nearly every big fight for digital rights since then. Over the years, he established the reporters’ privilege for online journalists, has been our lead…

Beware the Gifts of Dragons: How D&D’s Open Gaming License May Have Become a Trap for Creators

According to leaks reported last week, the company that owns Dungeons and Dragons (D&D) is planning to revoke the open license that has, since the year 2000, applied to a wide range of unofficial, commercial products that build on the mechanics of Dungeons and Dragons. The report indicates that this wouldn’t simply be a change going forward, but would affect existing works that relied on the license. The old license would be revoked for existing uses, and people who have used on it will be forced to adopt new terms or renegotiate with the company, Wizards of the Coast, a…

Last Chance for U.S. Federal Employees to Make a Pledge for EFF!

Calling all U.S. federal employees and retirees: the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) pledge period is closing on January 14, 2023. Be sure to make a pledge for EFF now to support digital freedoms for every internet user.  It’s easy to donate to EFF through the CFC! Here are the steps: Scan the QR code below or go to https://GiveCFC.org Click the DONATE button to give via payroll deduction, credit/debit, or an e-check Be sure to use our CFC ID #10437 If you are renewing a pledge from last year, you can also easily increase your support by following the steps…

Data Sanctuary for Abortion and Trans Health Care: 2022 in Review

In the wake of this year’s Supreme Court decision in Dobbs overruling Roe v. Wade, sheriffs and bounty hunters in anti-abortion states will try to investigate and punish abortion seekers based on their internet browsing, private messaging, and phone app location data. We can expect similar tactics from officials in states that have prohibited transgender youths from obtaining gender-affirming health care. Indeed, the Texas governor ordered state child welfare officials to investigate such care as child abuse. Many states are stepping forward to serve as health care sanctuaries for people seeking abortion or gender-affirming care that is not legal at…

A Year in Internet Surveillance and Resilience: 2022 in Review

This year, we have seen an array of different ways governments around the world have tried to alter basic security on the web for users. Much of this was attempted through legislation, direct network interference, or as a request directly from a government to internet governance authorities. On the other hand, we have also seen new anti-censorship mechanisms assist people so that they can regain access to the wider world, providing hope in really dark times. EU’s Digital Identity Framework While the European Union’s eIDAS (electronic IDentification, Authentication and trust Services) framework and law is not new and has been…