Yesterday, May 5, 2014, a diverse coalition of thousands of Internet users, companies and organizations began a campaign called 'Reset The Net'. Websites and companies such as BoingBoing, CREDO Mobile, DuckDuckGo, imgur and reddit are only a small number of companies joining in a planned one day online event of action on June 5, 2014. The event is being coordinated by Fight for the Future whose tagline reads, "A nonprofit working to expand the Internet's power for good."
Reset The Net's goal is to have millions around the globe is to stop government intrusion into our personal lives and our businesses in their ongoing violation of the U.S. Constitution's Fourth Amendment. On June 5, 2014, participating websites will put a 'splash screen' on their front page offering viewers Internet tools to protect their privacy. The date June 5, 2014 is significant as it is the first anniversary of Edward Snowden's story by Greg Greenwald of the U.S. Government's overstepping surveillance authorities.
Other organizations such as the Libertarian Party, Greenpeace, FireDogLake, OpenMedia, Bill of Rights Defense Committee, Popular Resistance, Student Net Alliance, Free Press, PolitHacks and Restore the Fourth are a handful of organizations that have already joined the movement. Many more are expected to join before the June 5, 2014 online event. These organizations are aligned in their opposition to the U.S. Government's bulk collection of data on all Internet users across the globe.
“The Libertarian Party enthusiastically joins Reset the Net,” said Carla Howell, Political Director for the Libertarian National Committee. “Over thirty Libertarian candidates running for federal office this year have pledged to shut down the NSA and invite Edward Snowden to return home a free man. He should be granted an immediate presidential pardon, awarded the American Medal of Freedom, and applauded for blowing the whistle on the NSA’s abuse of the Constitution.”
At Reset the Net's website, viewers can learn how they can participate in the online event. They can also learn and safely download free software to help protect them against hackers as well as the government, increasing their privacy. At the website, one can simply add their name to be informed of updates and they can learn how to add the splash screen to their website or blog for the June 5, 2014 online event.
The Reset The Net website details the coalition of companies and organizations which are participating, either by improving their own security for users or promoting privacy tools to their members. Internet users are invited to join in on the day of Reset The Net to install privacy and encryption tools and secure their personal digital footprint against intrusive surveillance.
“Freedom to be yourself is everything. No government can take that away from us, so we're going to use the power we have to take it back,” said Tiffiniy Cheng, co-founder of Fight for the Future, “Now that we know how mass surveillance works, we know how to stop it. That's why people all over the world are going to work together to use encryption everywhere and make it too hard for any government to conduct mass surveillance. There are moments in history where people and organizations must choose whether to stand on the side of freedom or tyranny. On June 5th, the Internet will show which side it’s on.”
"We can take back control of our personal and private data one website, one device, one Internet user at a time," said Erik Martin, General Manager of reddit, "We're proud to stand up for our users' rights and help Reset the Net."
"A year after Snowden's shocking revelations, the NSA is still spying on innocent Americans without a warrant," said Michael Kieschnick, CEO of CREDO Mobile. "CREDO will continue to demand Congress and the president take action to stop unconstitutional mass warrantless surveillance, and until we win real reform, we will encourage users to adopt encryption tools to protect their personal communications from government abuse of the 1st and 4th amendment."
“A year ago, the world awakened to the reality that the freedom, openness, and security of the internet is gravely at risk. In the wake of mass spying revelations, it is becoming ever more clear that robust encryption practices must be used by all internet platforms in order to protect the privacy of internet users,” said Amie Stepanovich, Senior Policy Counsel at Access. “Access has launched the Data Security Action Plan, which outlines actionable steps that can be taken to protect against unauthorized surveillance - we hope that companies will use the Action Plan as a guide as they look for ways to help Reset the Net.”
"As the NSA and other intelligence authorities continue to undermine the basic security of the Internet ecosystem, it's become clear that we need to build new legal and technical firewalls against overreaching government surveillance," said Kevin Bankston, Policy Director of New America Foundation's Open Technology Institute. "The Open Technology Institute is excited to support Reset the Net and highlight the need for all of us--both individual internet users and the companies that serve them--to take full advantage of encryption and other security tools that can help protect our private data against snoops, spies, criminals and creeps."Joe Hall of Center for Democracy and Technology said, "Legal and architectural changes to push back against mass surveillance happen very slowly, but all of us with a computer, an app, or a website can take matters in our own hands now and Reset the Net from the bottom up."
Steve Anderson, Executive Director of OpenMedia.org, said: “At the end of the day, we’re going to have to create accountability for governments that are spying on their citizens. And it’s sad that people feel they need to route around what their government is doing - this shows just how far governments have grown out of touch with their citizens. It’s so important that people speak out in any way they can about surveillance, and using encryption technologies is one way to do that.”