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Welcome to the Official Schedule for RightsCon Toronto 2018. This year’s program, built by our global community, is our most ambitious one yet. Within the program, you will find 18 thematic tracks to help you navigate our 450+ sessions

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Last updated: Version 2.3 (Updated May 15, 2018).

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Friday, May 18 • 14:30 - 15:45
Frontiers of feminist issues online: understanding the tensions and opportunities at the intersection of innovation, digital rights and security

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Digital innovation is bringing many benefits to the world, but the online world in which that innovation happens is also playing a significant role in amplifying inequalities, prejudice, sexism and harassment. From new forms of employment, labour and access, to pervasive surveillance, unfettered data collection and challenges of privacy, the online ecosystem is disrupting power relations, but also entrenching unequal gender dynamics. Many women, girls and other marginalized communities around the world do not have equal levels of access to, nor the skills to use, digital tools. But the deeper, sometimes unspoken, problem is that those who do acquire access and digital skills can face other challenges such as privacy invasion or harassment and bullying that seeks to marginalize female or feminist voices. Worries about surveillance, or privacy, or being taunted online can have a chilling effect, particularly on those who are already vulnerable.

But what are the policy options to address these challenges, and how can research support these policy processes? We know that sometimes policies meant to address vulnerable populations online can become tools for deeper, more invasive surveillance and censorship. The purpose of this session is to build a better understanding of the frontier issues in feminist/gender-related issues online – from access and labour, to digital rights, to supporting more inclusive and safe online spaces – and what the evidence base looks like on these issues. We want to hear about and discuss how researchers and civil society actors are working to counter the marginalization of women, girls and gender non-conforming voices, and how we can develop programming that supports and empowers feminist voices. But moreover, we want to push the boundaries of the discussion around these frontier issues – from data privacy to artificial intelligence. We are bringing together panelists who work on a broad range of gender-related and/or feminist issues in technology, and will explore the kinds of policy research that can help support inclusion.

avatar for Anja Kovacs

Anja Kovacs

Director, Internet Democracy Project
Dr. Anja Kovacs directs the Internet Democracy Project in Delhi. India, which works towards an Internet that supports freedom of expression, democracy and social justice. Anja’s research currently focuses especially on questions regarding cybersecurity, surveillance and privacy... Read More →

Friday May 18, 2018 14:30 - 15:45 EDT