It has been ten years since 1,000 digital activists donated £5 a month to create Open Rights Group. As we approach our 10th anniversary, we now have over 3,000 paying members. Then, as now, ORG’s mission was to support the rights of individuals. Our core belief is that people have the right to control their technology, and we oppose the use of technology to control people.
Many organisations, and the people who work for them, also recognise the benefits of fair laws, transparency and an open and free Internet which benefit them, as well as citizens. A number of businesses have supported us for many years - for example, Bytemark provide our web servers and Andrews & Arnold are instrumental in the running of our Blocked project. Now, ORG has launched our Corporate Supporter Scheme to invite more organisations that believe in digital rights to support our work. We’re delighted to announce that the first businesses to become official ORG Corporate Supporters are Andrews & Arnold, Grit Digital and Valcato Hosting. We hope that many more organisations will join them.
There are many examples of shared areas of concern for individuals and businesses. One of these has been recent media speculation about Government plans for accessing encrypted communications. With issues such as this, the tech sector benefits from ORG calling for the right to encrypt our communications and online transactions. Equally, our campaigns can benefit from their support – not just financially – but by adding their voice to the debate. Getting the business perspective on Government policies and and technical developments will also help us to have more informed policy positions. After all, it is often businesses that have to implement Government policies and they are very aware of their flaws.
Human rights are at the heart of everything we do, so we will only invite companies and organisations that support our aims and values to become Corporate Supporters, and we won't, at any point, start promoting their products.
We'd like to thank our Corporate Supporters for helping to make ORG's work even more effective. If you run or work for a business that supports digital rights, you can find out more about our Corporate Supporter scheme here, or by emailing me for more information: email@example.com