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[liberationtech] Plan for a New Liberationtech, 2.0

Yosem Companys ycompanys at
Sat Nov 10 08:22:44 PST 2018

Hi All,

I'm in the process of migrating Liberationtech from Stanford to a new
independent site, but I have run into a difficulty.

Most of you recommended Greenhost for hosting services, but I have yet to
receive a reply from Greenhost despite multiple email attempts.

Is there another hosting service you'd recommend? Please remember that the
criteria are the following:

   - The host should operate from a location that has the privacy- and
   security-friendliest laws in the world;
   - The host should also be the most privacy- and security-friendly host
   in the world (or the second most, assuming Greenhost is #1 in this area);
   - The host should offer great customer service.

Our original plan (described below) was to ask Greenhost both to host and
develop our new website. Now that Greenhost appears to be out of the
running, I intend to explore the other options you suggested below for
website development.


On Thu, Sep 6, 2018 at 8:55 PM Yosem Companys <ycompanys at> wrote:

> Below is the amended plan for the new Liberationtech based on your
> feedback. Should you have any questions, please let me know.
>    - *Corporate Governance: Fiscal Sponsorship, NOT Legal Status*. Most
>    of you recommended that we not incorporate legally as a 501(c)3 at this
>    time. Instead, you recommended that we use a fiscal sponsor instead. A
>    number of fiscal sponsors were proposed including Creative Commons; the
>    Electronic Frontier Foundation; Freedom House; the Free Software
>    Foundation; the Information Ethics and Equity Institute; Mozilla; Oasis;
>    the Open Source Institute; the Public Sphere Project; the Puerto Rico
>    Science, Technology, and Research Trust; the Renewable Freedom Foundation
>    in Germany; Software Freedom Conservancy; and Wikimedia. There is also the
>    Tides Foundation. The advantage of fiscal sponsors is that they can accept
>    charitable contributions on behalf of Liberationtech and take care of the
>    legal and accounting requirements needed to maintain the organization,
>    thereby freeing Liberationtech to pursue its vision and mission. We have
>    decided to find fiscal sponsors for different legal jurisdictions to ensure
>    that we have a global presence. [Down the line, the Sustainable Economies
>    Law Center was proposed as an organization to help Liberationtech
>    incorporate as a 501(c)3.]
>    - *Vision*. To research, design, and implement technologies for social
>    good, especially for privacy and security.
>    - *Mission*. To create and support a community of practice around
>    technology for social good that incorporates privacy and security by
>    design.
>    - *Hosting Service*. Most of you expressed concerns about hosting in
>    the U.S. and asked that Liberationtech use the most privacy- and
>    security-friendly legal jurisdiction instead. Most of you also
>    recommended Greenhost.
>    - *Website Design and Development*. Some of you kindly offered to work
>    on a pro bono basis to design and develop the Liberationtech website.
>    Others suggested contacting groups such as the Agile Collective, Aspiration
>    Technologies, CoTech, Digital Life Collective,, and Greenhost
>    for these services. What should the website have? You asked that we keep
>    the Liberationtech website simple. Beyond a basic description and a list of
>    the board of advisers, you asked that we do the following:
>       - *Keep It Simple Stupid (KISS)*. Most of you asked that we build a
>       site that is as simple as possible so that it may be viewed even by those
>       who have slow devices or weak bandwidth.
>       - *Just a mailing list, please*. Most of you also asked that we
>       only use open-source mailing list software that has been around for a long
>       time for convenience (i.e., you get the email in your inbox) or security
>       reasons and to make it easier for any list subscriber to download the list
>       or port it from one device to another.
>       - *Use Matrix and/or Discourse*. Enough of you feel passionate
>       enough about using Matrix and/or Discourse beyond the basic mailing list
>       capabilities that we've decided to do so.
>       - *Let me create my own list, please*. Many of you asked that we
>       allow list subscribers to create their own lists around specific subjects,
>       whether by chapter (read more below), geography, sector, or topic. For
>       example, some of you asked that Calls for Papers (CfPs), jobs, and
>       announcements be moved to separate mailing lists.
>       - *Make the site mobile*. Self-explanatory.
>       - *Mirror it*. Many of you asked that we mirror the site at a
>       number of locations for security reasons.
>    - *Incubation*. Because we've decided to continue to research, design,
>    and implement technologies for social good that incorporate privacy- and
>    security-by-design, we aim to raise funds to become an incubator of
>    technology for social good, where the funds would go to support the
>    development of projects based on the ideas the community likes the most.
>    We'll also try to incubate student projects on tech for social good that
>    could be sponsored by companies to help students get jobs post-graduation.
>    - *Directory*. Some of you suggested that we create a wiki (or
>    similar) with tips, good practices, tools, and apps for secure
>    communication and digital privacy, along with a list of the organizations
>    and platforms that work in the technology for social good space.
>    - *Funding*. Some of you suggested that Liberationtech contact
>    foundations such as Omidyar and the Open Technology Fund. Others suggested
>    that Liberationtech engage in crowdfunding. Yet others suggested charging a
>    yearly fee for people to create their own Liberationtech chapters in
>    geographies around the world.
> One question that lingers is the following:
>    - What is the key differentiator of Liberationtech vis-a-vis other
>    existing groups, organizations, and/or sites in the space?
> If any of you want to take a stab at answering the question, please do so.
> Otherwise, Gonzalo and I will be more than happy to do a review of the
> field and try to answer that question in a more explicit manner.
> Thanks,
> Yosem
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