WG 3 – Privacy and Transparency Online
The Freedom Online Coalition Working Group on Privacy and Transparency Online focuses on the relationship between governments and information & communications technology (ICT) companies, with a particular emphasis on respecting human rights online, including freedom of expression and privacy. The Working Group is comprised of experts from governments, ICT companies, civil society and academia from across six continents.
The Group supports FOC member governments’ implementation of the 2014 Tallinn Agenda for Freedom Online, which emphasizes the importance of enhancing transparency and protecting privacy as part of a commitment to Internet freedom. We aim to provide operational guidance to FOC government members and stakeholders, and to contribute to the global discussion on transparency and accountability with respect to the relationship between governments and ICT companies.
In our first year, we conducted research on transparency about government requests to ICT companies for user information and content restriction. We conducted consultations with companies and governments, focusing specifically on how the parties interact on issues related to law enforcement and national security. We examined the role of transparency as a tool for government and corporate accountability, and as a fundamental part of empowering individuals to fully exercise their rights online, including freedom of opinion and expression. We published a report in November 2015 outlining our findings and proposing recommendations for companies and governments.
We strive to encourage companies and governments to be transparent in a way that empowers individuals with the information necessary to exercise their rights freely and safely online. The Group is pursuing a number of activities toward this goal:
- Defining transparency: We are developing a multi-stakeholder definition of what corporate and government transparency means from the user perspective. This framework will encompass company and government reporting, and statistical reporting as well as the disclosure of laws, policies, and processes. We will open the draft definition to public comment.
- Analysis of emerging issues: We are launching a blog series looking at emerging issues related to transparency in the ICT sector. An initial area of focus is the rise of informal and extra-legal requests to companies related to concerns over terrorist use of the internet.
- Policy development: We are pursuing longer-term projects to address major research gaps on transparency and partner with governments and companies developing relevant policies and practices. Our initial focus is on developing models for more robust government transparency reporting, which we found to be an underdeveloped area in our research.
- Blog #1: Welcome to the Working Group 3 Blog
- Blog #2: FOC Working Group Kicks Off 2016 Focus on Emerging Issues in Privacy and Transparency
- Blog #3: A people-centered standard for online transparency
- Blog #4: Updated: Introducing a People-Centred Standard for Online Transparency — What Does Adequate Government and Corporate Transparency Look Like?
- Blog #5: The case for transparency
- Blog #6: The Human Rights Context for Transparency
The views expressed in this blog represent the views of individual authors, informed by the Working Group’s goals, themes, and recommendations. They do not represent the views of the Freedom Online Coalition or its members.
Structure and Membership
The work of the WG is carried out by its members. The group consists of 15 selected individuals who join the WG Co-chairs – the UK Government and Katharine Kendrick of Georgetown University– as well as other FOC government members who have expressed interest in participating. Activities of the WG are supported by the FOC Support Unit. The majority of the WG’s work is done remotely, with in-person meetings and consultations on the margins of international events.
Non-members of the WG will be able to provide input to the WG at various points in the process through consultations in person and online. We welcome engagement with any initiatives and individuals working in these policy areas. To contact the Group, please email info@
MEMBERS LISTGovernmental Non-Governmental
Co-chair: United Kingdom +
The UK Government is represented by Stephen Lowe, more information to follow shortly.
Co-chair: Katharine Kendrick+
Katharine Kendrick is a masters candidate in international relations at Georgetown University. Prior to Georgetown, she led projects focused on the internet and telecommunications sector for the Center for Business and Human Rights at NYU Stern School of Business. Before joining the Center, Katharine developed internet freedom policy and programs at the U.S. State Department's Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor. Katharine previously worked at the Center for International Media Assistance, the Hürriyet Daily News in Turkey, and the U.S. Embassy in Morocco. She is a graduate of Yale University.
Anna Lekvall is the Deputy Director of the Department for International Law, Human Rights and Treaty Law at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Sweden.
United States of America+
The US Government is represented by Alan Krill and Amanda Norris.
Alan Krill joined the U.S. Department of State in June 2011. He currently serves as a Foreign Affairs Officer on the Internet Freedom, Business, and Human Rights team in the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor’s Office of Multilateral and Global Affairs. In this capacity, Alan works on privacy issues, engagement with ICT companies, implementation and promotion of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, and conflict resource matters. Alan is a graduate of Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA). Prior to his studies at SIPA, Alan worked with an anti- trafficking NGO in the Philippines and in Baltimore with an apparel manufacturing company. He obtained a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Salisbury University.
Amanda Norris is a Foreign Affairs Officer in the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs in the Office of International Communications and Information Policy. In CIP Amanda is responsible for promoting business opportunities for U.S. information communication and technology (ICT) companies abroad (specifically in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union). She also covers issues including the expansion of ICTs in emerging markets and the advancement of Internet freedom globally. Previously, Amanda worked on the European Union enlargement process in Southeastern Europe at the U.S. Mission to the European Union and was a Fulbright Scholar in Germany. Amanda holds a M.A. in International Economics and Eurasian Affairs from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and a B.A. in Government and European Affairs from the College of William & Mary.
The German government is represented by Peter Stentzler of the German Federal Foreign Office.
Kevin Bankston is Policy Director of the New America Foundation’s Open Technology Institute, where he works in the public interest to promote a stronger and more open Internet for a stronger and more open society, with a focus on issues of Internet surveillance and censorship.
Prior to leading OTI’s policy team, Kevin was Director of the Free Expression Project at the Center for Democracy & Technology, a non-profit organization in Washington DC dedicated to promoting democratic values and constitutional liberties in the digital age. Before that, he worked for nearly a decade at the Electronic Frontier Foundation in San Francisco, specializing in free speech and privacy law with a focus on government surveillance, and litigated Internet free speech issues as a William J. Brennan First Amendment Fellow at the National ACLU in New York.
He is currently a Truman National Security Fellow, a board member of the First Amendment Coalition, and on the advisory board of the Open Technology Fund.
Ben Blink is a graduate student at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. Before the Kennedy School, Ben spent five years at Google, where he was a founding member of its free expression and international relations team, where he built partnerships to combat Internet censorship and filtering around the globe.
Ben's policy and strategy work has included a broad portfolio including freedom of expression, human rights, online hate and extremism, trade, and Internet governance. Ben represented Google at the Global Network Initiative -- a coalition of companies, human rights groups, investors, and academics that develops best practices for respecting human rights in the Internet and communications sector.
Before his time in public policy, Ben worked for business divisions of tech and media companies. He was an advertising account manager at Google, and worked in international programming at MTV Networks.
Angela Daly is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the Swinburne Institute for Social Research (Melbourne, Australia), affiliate of the Swinburne Law School and research associate at the Tilburg Institute for Law, Technology and Society (Netherlands).
Her academic expertise lies in the interaction between law and new technologies, particularly privacy, free expression, data protection, intellectual property, and competition and regulation. Angela is also currently a director of the Australian Privacy Foundation, a former auDA Internet Ambassador and board member of Electronic Frontiers Australia, and has previously worked with Electronic Frontier Foundation, Ofcom, European Alternatives and the British Council.
Stefan Heumann is deputy director of the program “European Digital Agenda” at the stiftung neue verantwortung. Organized as a think tank, the program brings together thought leaders from academia, business, civil society, and government to discuss the challenges of digitalization as well as to develop and evaluate public policy designed to address these challenges.
Stefan Heumann helped to initiate the privacy project at stiftung neue verantwortung which seeks to raise awareness about the threat of surveillance to civil liberties and to engage NGOs, businesses and policy makers in a debate on surveillance and privacy both on the national and international level.
Prior to joining stiftung neue verantwortung in Berlin, Stefan Heumann coordinated the public affairs section of the U.S. Consulate in Hamburg and taught and researched as Assistant Professor of political science at the University of Northern Colorado. He holds a PhD in political science from the University of Pennsylvania.
Poncelet Ileleji has been a computer scientist by profession for the last 18 years. He has been involved with the use of ICT as a tool for sustainable development both as Coordinator and ICT Specialist for the Gambia YMCAs, where he is the coordinator of the computer training centre and digital studio. He is a Diplo Alumni and National Resource Person for Internet governance for the West African Internet Governance Forum (WAIGF), the Gambia Chapter.
He is also secretary for the Not for Profit Operational Constituency of ICANN (NPOC). He was a member of the Meeting Strategic Working Group (MSWG) within ICANN, and was founding member of the Information Technology Association of the Gambia (ITAG) and served as ITAG President from March 2014 to April 2014. Poncelet is very passionate about Internet governance, ICT for development and learning technologies.
Judith Lichtenberg is the Executive Director of the Global Network Initiative (GNI), a multi-stakeholder platform that brings together companies, civil society organizations, investors and academics to forge a common approach for advancing freedom of expression and privacy in the ICT industry globally.
Before joining GNI, Judith worked for Vodafone Netherlands were she acted in a variety of roles since 2008, including Head of Regulatory Affairs & Digital Rights and Head of Privacy & Sustainability.
Prior to joining Vodafone, Judith was Executive Director of the Lawyers for Lawyers Foundation, a Dutch NGO on whose board she continues to serve. Her international human rights experience includes serving as an international election observer in Ukraine and Armenia, and as a law clerk with the International Criminal Court and the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda.
Emma Llansó is the Director of CDT’s Project on Free Expression, which works to promote policies that support users’ free expression rights in the United States and around the world. The Free Expression Project takes a variety of approaches to advancing speech-protective policies, including amicus activity in domestic First Amendment cases, defending Internet intermediary liability protections in the U.S. and abroad, working on content policy best practices with online content platforms, and advocating for user-empowerment tools and digital media literacy for minors.
Since 2011, Emma has served as Policy Counsel for both the Free Expression and Global Internet Policy & Human Rights teams at CDT. She helps lead CDT’s global Internet governance work, which advocates for open, participatory, decentralized approaches to Internet governance at national, regional, and international levels.
Rebecca MacKinnon is Director of the Ranking Digital Rights project at the New America Foundation. Author of Consent of the Networked: The Worldwide Struggle For Internet Freedom (2012) and co-founder of Global Voices Online, she was a founding board member of the Global Network Initiative and now serves on the Board of the Committee to Protect Journalists. Fluent in Mandarin Chinese, MacKinnon was a Bureau Chief and correspondent for CNN in China and Japan in the late 90s and early 00s.
She is a visiting affiliate at the Annenberg School for Communication’s Center for Global Communications Studies at the University of Pennsylvania, was an adjunct lecturer at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, and served on the faculty at the University of Hong Kong’s Journalism and Media Studies Centre. She has held fellowships at Harvard’s Shorenstein and Berkman Centers, the Open Society Foundations, and Princeton’s Center for Information Technology Policy.
Alexandrine Pirlot de Corbion+
Alexandrine Pirlot de Corbion is an Advocacy Officer at Privacy International, working across the organization and the Privacy International network on privacy related issues with a particular focus on communications surveillance with the aim of engaging in advocacy activities at the national, region and international level and carrying out related thematic research. Additionally, she coordinates PI’s network of 29 organizations and experts in 20 countries across Africa, Asia and Latin America.
Previously, she was engaged in research and advocacy on issues relating to human rights, irregular migration, Security Sector Reform (SSR), gender, conflict management, and human security. Alexandrine graduated from the University of Birmingham with an MSc in Conflict, Security and Development following an LLM in International Law at the University of Westminster.
K S Park+
Korea University Law School Professor PARK Kyung-Sin, a.k.a. K.S. Park (A.B. in Physics, Harvard University, Class of 1992; and J.D., UCLA Law School, Class of 1995) is one of the founders and the current Executive Director of Open Net Korea, formerly one of the nine commissioners of Korea Communications Standards Commission, and Executive Director of the PSPD Law Center. He has written academically and been active in internet, free speech, privacy, defamation, copyright, etc., through organizing and expert-testifying in major free speech and privacy lawsuits and legislative advocacy. K.S. Park also was a key drafting partner in the Principles of Application of International Law on Communication Surveillance www.necessaryandproportionate.org and International Principles on Intermediary Liability www.manilaprinciples.org.
In 2008, he also founded the Clinical Legal Education Center of Korea University School of Law (f.k.a. Global Legal Clinic) and under CLEC’s auspices, founded bothwww.internetlawclinic.org, an online platform for free online counseling in 2011 and www.transparency.or.kr, a national transparency reporting project on both surveillance and censorship of the Korean government in 2014.
Meg Roggensack is a recognized expert on business and human rights with extensive experience in designing and leading multistakeholder engagement strategy and objectives. She teaches a graduate seminar on these issues at Georgetown University Law Center, provides consulting services to key stakeholders on these issues, and speaks regularly about the intersection of human rights and trade and implications for corporate accountability.
As the former Senior Advisor for Business and Human Rights at Human Rights First, Meg Roggensack led work on Internet freedom, as well as labor rights, natural resources, and security and multistakeholder engagement and accountability mechanisms to address the human rights impacts of global business operations.
A geek and an activist, Lokman Tsui is also an Assistant Professor at the School of Journalism and Communication of the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) where he researches free expression and internet policies. He is also a Faculty Associate with the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University. Before Lokman returned to academia, he was Google’s Head of Free Expression in Asia and the Pacific. He received his Ph.D degree from the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania, where his award winning dissertation examines how new technologies challenge us to rethink journalism. He was born and raised in Amsterdam, the Netherlands and is currently living in Hong Kong.
Alexandria Walden is a public policy & government relations counsel on Google’s international relations team, focused on free expression. With colleagues in more than 40 countries, Alexandria builds partnerships to combat Internet censorship and filtering around the globe.
Based in Washington, DC, Alexandria coordinates policy and strategy on a broad portfolio of issues including freedom of expression, human rights, and online hate and extremism. She also represents Google at the Global Network Initiative (GNI) -- a multi-stakeholder coalition of companies, human rights groups, investors, and academics that develops best practices for respecting human rights in the Internet and communications sector.
Prior to joining Google, Alexandria worked at The Raben Group, Center for American Progress and NOW Legal Defense and Education Fund.