What I have done (in the last 6 months)
Researched the Census with Gabor Szathmari (pictured bottom right) – found information on Right to Know pertaining to FOI on meetings by ABS to de-anonymise the 2016 Census and pinged this info to economist Peter Martin. Peter Martin writes two articles in the next two days critical of the ABS- launching CensusFail into the mainstream.
Campaigned successfully to have the ABC 7.30 report run a story on CensusFail, I was interviewed by the journalist who did the story for the report.
Supported the #CensusFail hashtag. I was mentioned (along with Asher Wolf) by Scott Ludlam in Parliament, written multiple blog posts on the issue.
Was interviewed by Declan Bowring (ABC radio) for a story that didn’t run on Australia’s first National Plan for Open Government and how people at the original consultation wanted a Federal ICAC but were so concerned about the OAIC (privacy watchdog) being abolished that we put that on the top of the agenda & as a result other important things dropped off the limited list of Commitments put to gov. The OAIC was subsequently re-funded in the May budget last year. I also campaigned to save the ACNC which went from the chopping block to receive an award for excellence in digital government.
Created ‘The #CensusFail Submission‘ which included a survey I designed on the Census which was answered by over 450 people. My submission was referenced twice in the final report of the Inquiry. My submission was also praised/referenced by former Head of the ABS Bill McLennan & The Castan Centre submissions.
While in Melbourne I organised three well attended events on privacy for Open Knowledge Melbourne. The first featured Drs Teague & Culnane who presented on the criminaisation of re-identification of open data. The final two events were on the inquiry to allow retained metadata to be used in civil proceedings.
Wrote submissions to the following parliamentary & departmental Inquiries.
- The 2016 Census (#CensusFail) includes database/code to make the survey answers searchable,
- the Open Government National Action Plan,
- the criminalisation of re-identification research,
- the Productivity Commission inquiry to overwrite the Privacy Act (Data Access & Use)
- the use of retained metadata in civil proceedings.
I developed a version of privacy game SnitchHunt to run in evening time-slots with supporting slides. The original version used Kibana to search the data (data & questions created by Gabor Szathmari). My version is intended to run on a cheaper server.
I have organised with Sydney Women Who Code to present SnitchHunt on May 9.
I have founded Sydney Citizen Journalism meetup group, organised a venue for formal events (Customs House Library, Circular Quay) The venue costs will be covered by Evan Donaldson (Fmr SAS Trooper & defence whistleblower). Visit the group or the events page to find out more.
Ways you can help
Donate to support my work.
Speak at one of my Sydney Citizen Journalism events. My first event is set down for 19 April and thereafter on the 3rd Wednesday each month at Customs House Library (level 2) in a room that holds a maximum of 50 people. Events must end at 7 when the library closes so it won’t be a late night and will have to start at 6 to get done by 7. If you have experience in whistleblowing, media or related issues please consider donating your time. Happy also to try running a crowdfunding campaign to cover your time.
Test my version of SnitchHunt. If you have a spare moment, take a look at my presentation & let me know if you encounter difficulties with the site.
You can also contribute blog posts if they are of interest to whistleblowers, citizen journalists, FOI, transparency, anti-corruption etc.
Thank you to everyone who has attended my events, spoken at events I have organised, shared my work, provided financial support or kindness to me. As you can see, I’m busier than ever but also having a great time engaging with people and creating community.