EFF at SXSW 2015

March 13, 2015 - 9:00am to March 17, 2015 - 5:00pm
Austin, TX

EFF returns to South by Southwest Interactive! Hear from EFF attorneys, activists, and policy analysts at four talks (schedule below) and stop by our Trade Show booth to find out how you can get involved with the movement for online rights.

The 22nd annual SXSW Interactive Festival returns to Austin, Texas from Friday, March 13 through Tuesday, March 17, 2015. An incubator of cutting-edge technologies and digital creativity, the 2015 event features five days of compelling presentations and panels from the brightest minds in emerging technology, scores of exciting networking events hosted by industry leaders and an unbeatable lineup of special programs showcasing the best new websites, video games and startup ideas the community has to offer. From hands-on training to big-picture analysis of the future, SXSW Interactive has become the place to preview the technology of tomorrow today.

Stop by the EFF Trade Show booth #613 to say hello and learn the latest about the latest developments in defending digital freedom for all. You can even pick up a special gift as a token of our thanks when you take advantage of our membership specials or donate. Here is when we'll be on site:

Sunday, March 15th - 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM
Monday, March 16th - 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM
Tuesday, March 17th - 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM
Wednesday, March 18th - 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM


EFF and EFF-Austin SXSW Salon
Capital Factory, Monday, March 16th - 7:00 PM to 9:30 PM

Join the Electronic Frontier Foundation and EFF-Austin for a drink, a bite, and a candid discussion of our digital future. The program includes a talk by former-NSA whistleblower and SXSW Keynote Speaker Bill Binney, and an opportunity for you to participate in community lightning talks. Drinks and light snacks will be provided. Please RSVP in order to attend, as space is limited.


When Should Privacy Trump Free Speech?
JW Marriott, Salon 8, Sunday, March 15, 5:00 PM - 6:00 PM

In a May 2014 decision, Europe’s highest ruled that search engines doing business in the EU must process takedown requests for search results that individuals believe violate their privacy rights -- creating a formal, EU-wide "right to be forgotten." Since then, they have been flooded with tens of thousands of such requests. More often than not, these are to factually accurate public information. Many critics, such as TechDirt's Mike Masnick, worry that this has already opened the door for disgraced politicians, sex offenders, and malpractice-burdened doctors to wipe their slate clean. And an editorial from the Wall Street Journal warned this would create “an Internet with borders,” where access to information differs depending on where you live.

Join us for a discussion of the EU decision's consequences, its spread to other countries, and how it is already affecting American tech companies and Internet entrepreneurs. And if it could ever take root in America. Panel discussion featuring EFF Director for International Freedom of Expression Jillian C. York.

What’s Next? Surveillance Reform Post-Snowden
JW Marriott, Salon 4, Monday, March 16, 9:30 AM - 10:30 AM

It has been more than a year since Edward Snowden exposed the inner workings of the NSA, setting off an intense national debate about the proper balance between security and privacy. There have been a number of reforms over the past year, including some changes directed by the President, a variety of court decisions – including a recent Supreme Court decision increasing mobile phone privacy, and a number of bills put forward in Congress – the fate of which remains uncertain. But for all the buzz, how much has actually changed? Have we gone too far in our attempts at reform, not far enough, or have we somehow gotten it just right? To explore these questions, the Strauss Center at the University of Texas will host a SXSW Interactive session featuring debate and dialogue between two experts in this area: Professor Bobby Chesney of UT’s Strauss Center, and EFF Senior Staff Attorney Hanni Fakhoury.

A Must for Startups: 10 Tips About Law Enforcement
Hilton Austin Downtown, Salon E, Monday, March 16, 3:30 PM - 4:30 PM

Let’s face it--companies are dealing with massive amounts of data and sensitive customer information. Whether your company idea is still on a napkin or if you’re reaching your first round of funding, you need a game plan for what happens when law enforcement comes knocking at your door--and it’s a matter or when, not if. Knowing the answers to questions ahead of time will keep your investment and your customers protected.

This presentation is a practical guide for any startup founder or core team to become familiar with their individual law enforcement strategy. Attendees will hear from experts on every side of this issue to learn how to push back when it’s appropriate, how to preserve a company’s rights, and how to constructively work with law enforcement agencies. When it comes to a run-in with law enforcement, being prepared and informed can make or break a company’s reputation. Panel discussion featuring EFF Staff Attorney Nate Cardozo.

Anyone Can Prevent Cyberwar: Here's How
JW Marriott, Salon 8, Monday, March 16. 3:30 PM - 4:30 PM

At dawn on 12 March 2013, police in Bahrain raided the house of 17 year-old Ali Shofa, confiscated his laptop and phone, and took him into custody. Ali was charged with writing anonymous Tweets referring to Bahrain's king as a "dictator," and was sentenced to 1 year in prison. Authorities had tracked him down by hijacking Ali's friend's account to send malicious links to Ali.

Governments, cyber militias, and others increasingly seek to exploit the digital security vulnerabilities of their adversaries to cause physical harm including imprisonment, disappearances, and even murder. A growing commercial "lawful intercept" industry from the West supplements freely available tools from the hacker underground.

Learn more from security researchers and victims alike about how these crimes have unfolded and what you can do to prevent them. Even if you’re not a computer security expert--or have never traveled outside of the US--you can play a part in making such abuses a thing of the past. Panel discussion featuring EFF Global Policy Analyst Eva Galperin.

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