Last week, the entire MDF team had the pleasure of attending the launch of NetGain, a major philanthropic partnership to strengthen digital society. After an introduction from Ford Foundation President Darren Walker and a keynote from New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, a string of activists, technologists, journalists, academics, and policy makers challenged all NetGain participants to use their work to enhance access, equality, freedom, and opportunity online. The day ended with a screening of Citizenfour and an open discussion with filmmaker Laura Poitras, and legal counsel to Edward Snowden, Ben Wizner.
The Ford Foundation has posted a collection of NetGain videos on their Vimeo page. In perhaps the most inspiring, Alicia Garza, co-creator of #BlackLivesMatter, remarks:
We need to preserve an open internet that allows for connection and access, so that movements can utilize technology tools in the service of organizing and power-building offline… We’ll know that Black Lives Matter when we all have access to digital platforms that create open spaces and work for all of us, and do not criminalize us.