2020 was certainly different and harder than we all anticipated. Despite the challenges that 2020 brought, the team at Simply Secure has done some amazing work, while also taking time to reflect and grow. We couldn’t have done this without support, collaboration, and solidarity from our community.
In 2021, you can expect to see some changes — including new team members and a new identity for Simply Secure, to match how we’ve grown since our inception! We’re hoping to expand on our work supporting consent, diversity and equity, human rights and infrastructure, as well as our growing portfolio of work around program design for supporting and funding trustworthy technology. We plan to continue working with individuals, projects, communities, and funders to build and inform technology, resources and programs that protect people’s dignity, safety and privacy.
- We supported the launch of our first fiscally sponsored project, led by Cade Diehm, the New Design Congress.
- Alongside Internews, EFF, and Access Now, we hosted monthly convenings, since February 2020, with the Human Rights Centered Design community, covering topics for practitioners ranging from contract tracing applications to trauma informed design.
- In June 2020, we launched a new report Decentralization Off The Shelf: 7 Maxims (DOTS) covering the key changes needed for decentralized technology to gain adoption through easing the developer ecosystem and improving the user experience.
- We worked closely with the Python PIP CLI team to address usability issues with pip and support the development and rollout of a significant new feature — an improved version of the dependency resolver.
- With support from the Open Technology Fund, we have been working to improve the Tor Metrics data platform, GlobaLeaks whistleblower platform, I2Ps usability, and we’ve been working directly with OTF to improve their funding application design and process.
- In partnership with Mozilla’s Open Source Support (MOSS) program, we developed a plan to improve their website and clarify their program offerings, and are building on that work to support an impact evaluation of the MOSS program since 2015.
- Building on work from 2016-2018, we are working with Internews to improve the feedback loops between end users, trainers, and software development teams through capacity building and support during a new phase of the USABLE program. This included hosting a month long convening in August 2020 — AXIS: A Global Feedback Exchange for Trainers, Auditors, Developers, and Designers.
- Through our partnership with Code for Science & Society, we have continued to work with PREreview and Measurement Lab. With PREreview, we are supporting and helping to lead a significant technical overhaul merging two of their current code bases into one that is more accessible to open source contributions. We are also currently starting a project to explore and co-design improvements to the platform to better support underrepresented communities in science. We completed a project with Measurement Lab around supporting libraries with open internet measurement data and tools.
- Supported by Reset.Tech and others, we have been working with a number of different projects related to mis- and disinformation data collection, supporting research, policy engagement and active intervention around online harms, including Algorithms Exposed, CDR’s Waterbear Link, Junkipedia, Meedan’s Check, Mozilla’s Ion Project, and The Markup’s Citizen Browser. Additionally we are supporting efforts to work on platform accountability collectively through workshops with the organizations like Consumer Reports, PEN America and Mozilla around platform data needed for transparency and advocacy initiatives.
- We supported the Implicit Development research team in their work evaluating the needs of FOSS communities working on digital infrastructure in the public interest. Read more in their final report: Roadwork Ahead.
- Coming out of the Sustain Convening in January 2020, we helped launch a working group focused on UX & Design in open source, which has been meeting monthly to collaborate on resources and coordinate around community needs for sustaining open source through user experience and design.
- We supported the rapid response effort to Save Internet Freedom Tech alongside many organizations and individuals in the community fighting to protect internet freedom.
- We spoke, supported, and helped organize over 20 workshops and talks at events like FOSDEM, Interaction20, SustainOSS, Moin World Women Tech Makers, Beeck Center, MyData, World Interaction Design Day, Data Natives, the HIIG, RightsCon, Bread & Net, #ShareTheMicInCyber, and joined coalitions such as the Coalition on Online Abuse.
Looking forward to reconnecting with all of you in 2021.
In solidarity — Georgia & the team at Simply Secure
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