Supporter Newsletter - January 2019

We’re rolling into the new year with some serious momentum! Last year’s triumphs and generous supporter donations have us ready for a packed 2019.


You wouldn’t know it from the headlines, but Brexit’s impact on our digital rights will be a game changer. In the lead up to Brexit Day 29 March, Open Rights Group (ORG) is on a mission to keep you informed about the threats and opportunities Brexit poses for our lives online. We’ll also be informing lawmakers to know exactly how leaving the EU will affect UK digital rights so they’re prepared for post-Brexit negotiations.


Just as surveillance practices meant to keep us safer proved detrimental to digital privacy, new plans to eliminate “harmful content” risk escalating digital censorship. Part 1 of our new report series examines problems with current UK censorship practices like opaque takedowns and a lack of independent means of redress. Part 2 is coming soon and will address problems with the government’s emerging Internet Safety Strategy. 

The long saga of the EU Copyright Directive’s controversial Article 13 - which would introduce upload filters on major Internet platforms - is approaching a final EU Parliament vote as soon as February. That vote will be our last chance to prevent a “new normal” where most online speech is vetted by corporate algorithms. In recent months the catastrophic Directive has been opposed by some of the very rights holders it will supposedly benefit. Keep an eye out for our call to action in the coming weeks.


Following our opposition to electronic voting trials in Scotland last year, in 2019 we’ll expand our research to help the Scottish and Welsh governments to understand e-voting’s effects on public trust in elections. We’ve also planning to work with partners, experts and policymakers across the UK to establish principles and rules for the use of personal data in political campaigning. 

ORG is poised to make a big impact in 2019 thanks to donations from our members and supporters. If you haven’t yet, please donate today. Your donation will be 100% matched by our generous corporate supporters.