Equals Change Blog

Internet and Technology

Salome Asega

Salome Asega, Technology Fellow, Creativity and Free Expression

Digital and technological literacy is crucial to social justice work

The Ford Foundation’s tech fellows work at the intersection of social justice and technology. Each of them is embedded within one of our program areas, lending their expertise on a particular set of issues along with their ability to understand and solve problems through a tech lens.

Ryan Gerety

, Technology Fellow, Equitable Development

All humans are technologists

The Ford Foundation’s tech fellows work at the intersection of social justice and technology. Each of them is embedded within one of our program areas, lending their expertise on a particular set of issues along with their ability to understand and solve problems through a tech lens.

Michael Brennan. 2016. Photo credit: Simon Luethi

, Technology Program Officer, Internet Freedom

Technology and social justice: Meet our tech fellows

The Ford Foundation’s tech fellows work at the intersection of social justice and technology. Each of them is embedded within one of our program areas, lending their expertise on a particular set of issues along with their ability to understand and solve problems through a tech lens.

Sophia Hernandez

Sophia Hernandez, Program Associate

Verificado 19s: Ayuda de la tecnología después del sismo en México

Todo comenzó con un grupo de chat entre amigos en WhatsApp, quienes buscábamos la manera de ayudar a los afectados por el terremoto.

Morgan Hargrave

, Technology Fellow, Civic Engagement and Government

There is no technology for justice. There is only justice.

The Ford Foundation’s tech fellows work at the intersection of social justice and technology. Each of them is embedded within one of our program areas, lending their expertise on a particular set of issues along with their ability to understand and solve problems through a tech lens.

Michelle Shevin

, Technology Fellow, Youth Opportunity and Learning

People are the architects of technological shifts, not machines

The Ford Foundation’s tech fellows work at the intersection of social justice and technology. Each of them is embedded within one of our program areas, lending their expertise on a particular set of issues along with their ability to understand and solve problems through a tech lens.

Ritse Erumi

Ritse Erumi, Technology Fellow, Inclusive Economies

Technology is not neutral—it’s political

The Ford Foundation’s tech fellows work at the intersection of social justice and technology. Each of them is embedded within one of our program areas, lending their expertise on a particular set of issues along with their ability to understand and solve problems through a tech lens.

Wilneida Negron. New York. 2017. Photo credit: Simon Luethi ©Ford Foundation.

, Technology Fellow, Gender, Racial, and Ethnic Justice

A technologist approaches technology with a healthy dose of skepticism

The Ford Foundation’s tech fellows work at the intersection of social justice and technology. Each of them is embedded within one of our program areas, lending their expertise on a particular set of issues along with their ability to understand and solve problems through a tech lens.

Sophia Hernandez

Sophia Hernandez, Program Associate

Verificado19s: Help from technology in the aftermath of Mexico’s earthquake

It all started with a WhatsApp group chat between friends looking for ways to help those affected by the quake.

Alfred, Ironside, New York 2014-2015. Photo Credit: Simon Luethi ©Ford Foundation.

, Vice President, Global Communications

Wilneida Negron. New York. 2017. Photo credit: Simon Luethi ©Ford Foundation. Morgan Hargrave

, Technology Fellow, Gender, Racial, and Ethnic Justice

, Technology Fellow, Civic Engagement and Government

Why you should care about bots if you care about social justice

The Internet is increasingly automated, sometimes by programs that have ill intentions toward social justice organizations. Learn what you and your organization should be aware of if you use the Internet. 

Lavar Gibson

Lavar Gibson, Associate

Joi Ito and Jeff Howe’s new rules for our faster, tech-driven world

In their new book, Whiplash: How to Survive Our Faster Future, MIT Media Lab director Joi Ito and journalist and MIT visiting scholar Jeff Howe lay out new “rules” for surviving and advancing in this age of rapid technological change.

Eryn, Loeb, New York 2014-2015. Photo Credit: Simon Luethi ©Ford Foundation.

Eryn Loeb, Editor

Shaping a digital marketplace that puts consumers first

Consumer Reports launches open-source consumer privacy effort called the Digital Standard, supported by the Ford Foundation.

Morgan Hargrave

, Technology Fellow, Civic Engagement and Government

Technologists for social justice: Why Ford is hiring more tech fellows

The Ford Foundation is looking for technologists to join our grant-making teams and help them advance social justice and challenge inequality.

Timothy Flacke

Timothy Flacke, Executive Director, Commonwealth

Prize Savings: Marrying a social sector idea with private sector scale

Each week, nearly one-third of the US population visits a Walmart store. As is the case with nearly half of all Americans, many of these shoppers have $400 or less in savings. In fact, one in six Americans says he or she is unprepared for a financial emergency, and only half feel financially secure. A third say they have no savings at all, according to a recent Pew survey.

Wilneida Negron. New York. 2017. Photo credit: Simon Luethi ©Ford Foundation.

, Technology Fellow, Gender, Racial, and Ethnic Justice

10 tech issues that will impact social justice in 2017

10 pressing tech issues that exist at the nexus of technology and social justice.

Lori, McGlinchey, New York 2014-2015. Photo Credit: Simon Luethi ©Ford Foundation. Jenny, Toomey, New York 2014-2015. Photo Credit: Simon Luethi ©Ford Foundation.

, Senior Program Officer, Internet Freedom

, Director, Internet Freedom

"Weapons of Math Destruction": Data scientist Cathy O’Neil on how unfair algorithms perpetuate inequality

Data scientist Cathy O’Neil shows in her revealing book, Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality, that math and mathematical algorithms are not as neutral and unbiased as we think they are.

 

Alberto, Cerda Silva, New York 2014-2015. Photo Credit: Simon Luethi ©Ford Foundation.

, Program Officer, Internet Freedom

Protecting free speech in the digital age: Q&A with UN special rapporteur for freedom of expression

Alberto Cerda Silva speaks with David Kaye, the United Nations special rapporteur for freedom of expression and opinion, about how the Internet is changing the right to free speech, press, and expression.

David Kaye, the United Nations special rapporteur for freedom of expression and opinion

David Robinson, Upturn

David Robinson, Principal, Upturn

Data ethics is a challenge that major foundations can’t afford to ignore

A new report released by Upturn examines how philanthropy can harness data at scale , what risks big data pose to foundations, and how to address these risks.

“The web belongs to all of us”: Q&A with the web’s inventor, Sir Tim Berners-Lee

Sir Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the World Wide Web, discusses why he created the web, why access to the Internet is a human right, and what it really means for the Internet to be open “for everyone" following a screening of Foreveryone.net, a documentary by Jessica Yu about his great invention. 

Juliet Mureriwa

Juliet Mureriwa, Learning Officer, Strategy and Learning

#ThisFlag: Zimbabwe’s online revolution

Evan Mawarire's Facebook video lamenting the worsening economic crisis and political repression in Zimbabwe sparked an online revolution, #ThisFlag. Mawarire urged Zimbabweans to reclaim their aspirations and reminded them that the power to change the status quo is in the hands of citizens. 

Crysta Jentile, New York 2016. Photo Credit: Simon Luethi ©Ford Foundation. Michelle Lawrence

Crysta Jentile, Communications Associate

Michelle Lawrence, Communications Intern

How government use of big data can harm communities

Big data drives much of our daily lives, but without proper oversight, the use of data by government agencies can exacerbate existing inequality and harm communities. 

Alberto, Cerda Silva, New York 2014-2015. Photo Credit: Simon Luethi ©Ford Foundation.

, Program Officer, Internet Freedom

Giving megaphones to the disenfranchised: Why Internet rights are human rights

Access to the Internet is critical for freedom of expression in modern societies and for enjoying cultural, social, and economic rights. Government's role in protecting this human right includes not blocking free speech, but also providing the disenfranchised with a voice.

Michael Brennan. 2016. Photo credit: Simon Luethi

, Technology Program Officer, Internet Freedom

Announcing the 2016 Ford-Mozilla Open Web Fellows

The second class of Ford-Mozilla Open Web Fellows aims to support the next generation of public interest technologists who leverage their technology-related expertise to serve the public good.

Lori, McGlinchey, New York 2014-2015. Photo Credit: Simon Luethi ©Ford Foundation.

, Senior Program Officer, Internet Freedom

A victory for net neutrality: Why the Internet is an essential public utility

Strong net neutrality rules in the US ensure that we will continue to have access to a free and open Internet—one that will remain an engine of free expression, economic growth, and innovation.

Deborah Wright

Deborah Wright, Senior Fellow, Ford Foundation

Google’s ban on payday loan ads is important. Here’s what else we need to do

Google’s ban eliminates a major way for payday lenders to entice consumers, but industry and government leaders need to address the underlying reasons why people turn to payday loans in the first place.

Lori, McGlinchey, New York 2014-2015. Photo Credit: Simon Luethi ©Ford Foundation.

, Senior Program Officer, Internet Freedom

Are tech companies doing enough to protect customer rights and privacy?

 A Q&A with Internet freedom advocate Rebecca MacKinnon

Michael Brennan. 2016. Photo credit: Simon Luethi

, Technology Program Officer, Internet Freedom

Why the Ford Foundation wants technologists to join the fight for social justice

The Ford Foundation is looking for technologists to join our grant making teams and help them advance social justice and challenge inequality.

Michael Brennan. 2016. Photo credit: Simon Luethi

, Technology Program Officer, Internet Freedom

Can computers be racist? Big data, inequality, and discrimination

Studies show big data can lead to racial bias, algorithms develop prejudices.

Jenny, Toomey, New York 2014-2015. Photo Credit: Simon Luethi ©Ford Foundation.

, Director, Internet Freedom

A digital culture shift

Digital technologies present critical challenges to equity, opportunity, and security—activists and advocates must make technology a cornerstone of their work.

Jenny, Toomey, New York 2014-2015. Photo Credit: Simon Luethi ©Ford Foundation.

, Director, Internet Freedom

In prisons, "phone justice" matters

FCC votes to cap the rates and fees that companies charge for phone service in prisons and jails.

Rosemary, Okello Orlale, New York 2014-2015. Photo Credit: Simon Luethi ©Ford Foundation.

, Program Officer

In rural Kenya, access to information is power

"Radio listening groups" and digital resource centers throughout rural Kenya empower women.

Cara Mertes

, Director, JustFilms, Creativity and Free Expression

CITIZENFOUR: Filmmaking as an act of justice

JustFilms director, Cara Mertes, shares how CITIZENFOUR is an example of how filmmaking can be an act of justice.

Betty Yu ©Ford Foundation

Betty Yu, NetGain Blogger

At NetGain, working together for an open Internet

On February 11, the presidents of the Open Society Foundations and the Knight, MacArthur, Mozilla, and Ford foundations came together with leading figures from government, philanthropy, business, and the tech world to launch a major new partnership, explore shared principles, and get ambitious about the next generation of innovation for social change and progress.

Barbara, Raab, New York 2014-2015. Photo Credit: Simon Luethi ©Ford Foundation.

, Program Officer, Creativity and Free Expression

Cracking the gender code

Program officer Barbara Raab recaps the the successes of the event Cracking the Code: Success for Women Digital News Entrepreneurs.

Darren, Walker, New York 2014-2015. Photo Credit: Simon Luethi ©Ford Foundation. Mark Surman. This image is not available under the 4.0 Creative Commons license.

, President

Mark Surman, Executive Director, Mozilla Foundation

Launching the Ford-Mozilla Open Web Fellows Program

All voices should be heard, that's why in partnership with Mozilla, Ford launched the Ford-Mozilla Open Web Fellows Program.

Darren, Walker, New York 2014-2015. Photo Credit: Simon Luethi ©Ford Foundation.

, President

How I learned to love crowdsourcing

Learn how and why Ford used crowdsourcing to help frame its new website.

Jenny, Toomey, New York 2014-2015. Photo Credit: Simon Luethi ©Ford Foundation.

, Director, Internet Freedom

Our future's Internet, strengthened today

For many of us, the Internet is inextricable from almost every moment of our lives—connecting us to work, family, friends and a wealth of ideas. But many still lack that crucial connection and the opportunities that come with it.