As EFF's senior investigative researcher, Dave Maass is a muckraker/noisemaker, covering issues related to police surveillance, free speech, transparency, and government accountability. In addition to leading deep-dive investigations, Dave coordinates large-scale public records campaigns, advocates on state legislation, and compiles The Foilies, EFF's annual tongue-in-cheek awards for outrageous responses to FOIA requests. He sometimes represents EFF in digital rights-themed cosplay at Dragon Con, and he edited EFF's first science fiction collection, Pwning Tomorrow. He also researches virtual reality as part of the team that developed Spot the Surveillance, EFF's first VR experience. Contact him with questions or information on police technology (e.g. automated license plate readers, biometric identification), prisoner rights, or public records laws.
Dave is currently Visiting Professor of Media Technology at the University of Nevada, Reno Reynolds School of Journalism.
Before joining EFF, Dave wrote for alt weeklies in every state along the southern border, reporting on everything from Texas death row to San Diego Comic-Con. He has moderated dark-horse presidential debates on public access TV; organized digital media on barely legal road rallies; performed spoken word on a British art-rock tour, and revealed human-rights abuses in Ghanaian refugee camps. His political investigations uncovered embezzlement that ultimately put a New Mexico elected official behind bars and misconduct resulting in the severe censure and fines levied against a San Diego County Superior Court Judge. His work on incarceration has been used to support civil rights lawsuits, detention system reform, and state legislation.
His investigative reporting on incarceration in San Diego County was honored with the Youth Law Center's Loren Warboys Unsung Hero Award and the National Association for Civilian Oversight of Law Enforcement's Contribution to Oversight Award. He has also won top honors from the Association of Alternative Newsmedia and the Society of Professional Journalists San Diego Chapter. In 2017, Dave was a recipient of the First Amendment Coalition's Free Speech and Open Government Award alongside EFF Senior Staff Attorney Jennifer Lynch and the ACLU of Southern California's Director of Police Practices Peter Bibring. He also served on the San Francisco Sunshine Ordinance Task Force from 2016-2018.