This time last year, we announced the formation of #HackHarassment at the International Consumer Electronics Show – and what a year it’s been! At the core, our mission is to provide users with safer, more inclusive online experiences. Fundamentally we believe that everyone – regardless of their identity, background, or beliefs – is entitled to an online world where they are treated with respect and are free from harassment.
Over the past year, we’ve worked towards this goal by elevating the conversation around online harassment, fostering collaboration between those working to reduce it, and cultivating real solutions to lessen the impact of it.
We have a great community who have joined us in our fight, but we hope to grow even more. Kick off 2017 with us by sharing the #HackHarassment Pledge with your family and friends.
We raise awareness about online harassment and help people understand that its consequences can aﬀect real lives. Everyone needs to take action and speak up when they see it happening.
#HackHarassment Pledge Launches at Code Conference
At Recode’s annual Code Conference, Born This Way Foundation President Cynthia Germanotta called on the technology community to join the movement to combat online harassment by taking the #HackHarassment Pledge. To date, 5,735 people have signed our pledge. You are all part of a growing movement and none of us are isolated in our fight for change!
Gabby Douglas Change Ambassador
3-time U.S. Olympic gold medalist Gabby Douglas is teaming up with #HackHarassment to serve as our organization’s first Change Ambassador. As Change Ambassador, Gabby will act as a spokesperson and champion for our efforts to decrease the frequency and severity of online harassment and will help to ensure the campaign remains focused on addressing the experiences of those who face such treatment. Hers is a voice that will certainly help bring attention to this growing problem. Check out what others are saying about this exciting partnership:
Online Community Growth
In order to raise awareness about the pervasiveness of online harassment, we need your help. That’s why our own community growth and engagement is so important to us. Over 6,000 people are reading this email right now, over 1,000 of you follow us on Twitter, and almost 500 like us on Facebook. Help us grow our communities in the new year – there is strength in numbers!
We need to act as individuals but also collaborate to bring together a broader coalition of organizations, brands and inﬂuencers who can help us spread the message and commit to fight for our cause.
#HackHarassment Partners With Major League Hacking
This school year, we teamed up with Major League Hacking to combat online harassment and will continue to serve as the official Anti-Harassment Sponsor of student hackathons through the Spring semester. So far, 28,000 students have attended 86 hackathons. 320 of those students have taken the #HackHarassment Challenge, garnering 124 projects – of which 63 were chosen as winners! Take a look at some of our favorites – and remember it’s not too late to hack with us! We’re coming to you this semester. Check out a list of upcoming hackathons here.
Campus Ambassador Program
We launched the Campus Ambassador Program because we knew college students have a unique perspective in the fight against online harassment, as many are impacted by it themselves. We now have over 170 students in this program and we are looking forward to awarding our first round of grants in the next few weeks! All of these ambassadors are inspiring others with their creative ideas – and inspiring us to think of what else is possible! You can still get involved – just visit here.
We were excited to attend DockerCon, the community and industry event for makers and operators of next generation distributed apps built with containers, where we had the opportunity to speak in front of 4,000 people about our initiative. This audience of developers helped spark conversation about the possible tech solutions to online harassment.
This was the perfect opportunity for us to talk to content creators about keeping the internet awesome as over 100,000 people gathered at the Anaheim Convention Center in California. We were thrilled to share the #HackHarassment message with a diverse group of individuals who use the online world as a means to express themselves, share knowledge, create art, spread laughter, and much more. Know that you are not alone in this fight – popular YouTube stars hate online harassment, too, and even experience it themselves.
With 28-hours of conference time, 600 #HackHarassment pledge signatures (including one from a T-Rex), and at least 300 high fives given, we say with certainty that TwitchCon was awesome and helped grow our community in extremely valuable ways! We think all 41,000 attendees would agree.
The world’s largest conference for women engineers took place in Philadelphia at the end of October. WE16 was great opportunity for the #HackHarassment team to speak to bright and innovative members of the Society of Women Engineers – 100 of whom signed our pledge and over 20 signed up to be Campus Ambassadors! If you’re attending an industry event such as this and want to help spread the word about #HackHarassment, contact us at email@example.com.
John Ryan, an Intel high school intern this past summer, was the youngest presenter at CERC 2016 in Ireland. He presented a #HackHarassment benchmark report at the conference alongside grad students and professors! His success is proof that no matter where you are in the world, online harassment is pervasive and needs to be eradicated.
#HackHarassment’s Program Director, Christopher Loo, attended the first DevRel Summit, taking part in the Inclusion In Action Panel where panelists discussed how to make environments more inclusive and how to be an ally for the underrepresented. Having these positive conversations about what can be done to create better communities is vital to the success of our fight against online harassment.
Intel Developer Forum (IDF) is an annual event put on by Intel Corporation to expose a host of new hardware and software developments setting the foundation for the next year of technological advancements. This year, we were there to witness the latest announcements and share with the developer community a development of our own and host a panel discussing how saying nothing says everything.
We were proud to participate in Character Day 2016 – along with 70,000 other groups in 96 countries – as we all worked to spread the importance of character building, which is something we think is critical to creating a more inclusive world. #HackHarassment Program Director, Christopher Loo, discussed how the internet can be used for good during a live Q&A. If you have ideas about how we can keep the internet awesome, tweet at us!
At the inaugural #IntelAI Day, Ina Fried, Senior Editor at Recode, spoke on behalf of #HackHarassment during the ‘AI for Good’ panel. The hope for AI, said Fried, is to identify hateful and harassing content, as currently social media isn’t doing a good job of policing itself. Improvements in technology could make our job in policing online harassment easier.
At Big Ideas Fest, #HackHarassment showcased a storytelling panel of innovators who have designed solutions to fight online harassment. Represented on the panel were young adults who shared their stories of how they addressed harassment in order to bring their whole selves to online spaces. These are the stories we love to share – people who have experienced online harassment and decided to do something about it. If you have a story to share, reply to this email!
As a community, we need to come up with technical solutions that can ultimately end online harassment. By working with innovators, technology experts and users we can create and implement tools that can eﬀectively combat this issue in all its forms.
#HackHarassment Web App
Rather than spend the summer developing new chips, Alexei Bastidas spent his internship at Intel teaching a computer how to spot harassment on the internet. The app tests for harassment by determining the likelihood that an individual account contains harmful tweets. #HackHarassment now has a team continuing to work on the app and we plan on open sourcing the data set in June 2017. We’ve seen countless awesome projects come out of hackathons, so we thought we’d work on something ourselves. If you’d like to be involved, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Major League Hacking Projects
Our partnership with Major League Hacking has resulted in over 124 projects that fight online harassment – real ideas and tools we can use to #HackHarassment! Hear directly from the winners from HackDavis and HackPSU! Let their work inspire you to create something of your own.
As we look forward into 2017, we are focused on the work ahead. We want you to be an active part of the first movement to stop online harassment with real solutions as its outcome. Feel empowered to take a stand against online harassment and help build up the Internet by being your best, most authentic self online!
Every individual and organization invested in addressing this problem has unique resources, insights, and expertise. It means you are part of the fight to make the world a better place.
What will you do this year to fight online harassment?
The #HackHarassment Team