Tuesday, March 7, 2017
The Center for Democracy and Technology Studies the Online Community
Experienced computer scientist Ben Pu balances his professional pursuits with the work he does in support of various advocacy groups. In addition to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and the Free Software Foundation, Ben Pu dedicates his time and resources to the Center for Democracy & Technology (CDT).
In its efforts to protect the open nature of the Internet and the privacy of Internet users, the CDT runs several campaigns focused on free expression, Internet architecture, security, surveillance, and other issues. Recently, the organization launched a long-term initiative that seeks to advance the understanding of how the various elements in the Internet ecosystem combine to create online communities and shape user experiences.
Over the course of the campaign, the CDT will create a dialogue by evoking wide-ranging questions related to power structures, identity, speech, and community. The campaign will draw on existing research related to online communities and pursue new research through partnerships with Internet users, academic institutions, and scholars from various disciplines. Ultimately, the CDT will use the campaign to advance Internet policy and best practices that will improve user engagement and empowerment.