The Signals Network will be represented in three virtual and in-person sessions at next week’s international 2023 RightsCon Summit in Costa Rica. The summit describes itself as “the 12th edition of the world’s leading summit on human rights in the digital age.”
The summit is June 5 to 8. You can register for free to watch any of the events online here.
How to blow the whistle: Helping workers hold bad actors accountable
WHEN: Thursday, June 8 | 5:30 – 6:30 a.m. EDT
Everyone has the ability to call out injustice and wrongdoing, but many people don’t understand their rights and the legal and regulatory pathways available to them. They may also not be aware of the non-governmental organizations that can provide legal, safety and other support to brave whistleblowers throughout their journey.
The Signals Network (TSN), Whistleblowing International Network (WIN), and Maynooth University assistant law professor Dr. Lauren Kierans BL have worked over the last two years to help tech workers know their rights.
The Tech Worker Handbook series, first developed for the US and now in development for Irish, British and French employees, gives workers guidance in key areas of consideration, including legal, security and working with media. The speakers will discuss the universal best practices and unique differences they found creating these guides, such as how to create a personal assessment or work with a lawyer.
TSN’s Executive Director Delphine Halgand-Mishra will facilitate the panel with WIN Executive Director Anna Myers and Dr. Kierans. WIN and TSN have contributed to the creation of the original Tech Worker Handbook for the U.S. and the soon-to-be-released guide for the U.K. whilst Dr. Kierans is creating the guide for Ireland.
Twitter whistleblower talks about her journey
WHEN: Wednesday, June 7 | 6:45 – 7:15 p.m. EDT
Journalist Melissa Chan will sit down with Twitter whistleblower Anika Navaroli, who receives support from TSN, for a 30-minute chat on representation in Big Tech, her whistleblowing journey and the need to further regulate social media.
Navaroli was the most senior expert on Twitter’s U.S. safety policy team at the time of the attack on the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021.
The Signals Network represents Navaroli and provides her with support through its Whistleblower Protection Program.
In September 2022, Navaroli went public in an exclusive interview with Washington Post reporter Drew Harwell as one of the two Twitter whistleblowers who gave evidence to the U.S. House Committee investigating the January 6th attack on the U.S. Capitol. Shortly after, she was awarded the Ridenhour Prize for Truth-Telling for her courage in coming forward to speak truth to the committee. She has subsequently testified to Congress and penned an op-Ed for The Financial Times on Europe’s proposed media freedom act.
Ex-content moderator to speak on ‘Facebook: deadly by design’ panel
WHEN: Thursday, June 8 | 11 a.m. – 12 p.m. EDT
Daniel Motaung, who receives whistleblower support from TSN, will be speaking on a panel that features legal experts and people harmed by Facebook’s failures. He’ll be joined by Fisseha Tekle, a former Ethiopia researcher and legal advisor at Amnesty International, and Abrham Meareg, whose father was brutally murdered after slanderous Facebook posts targeted him for attack.
Motaung, Tekleand and Meareg will be joined by their lawyer Mercy Mutemi of Nzili and Sumbi Advocates and Martha Dark, Director of TSN partner Foxglove, a tech accountability nonprofit supporting these cases.
Motaung of South Africa is a former content moderator and whistleblower who raised the alarm on the abusive working conditions at Facebook’s Kenyan outsourcing content moderation company, Sama. Perrigo investigated those working conditions and wrote the Time magazine February 2022 cover story, “Inside Facebook’s African Sweatshop.” TSN provided support to Motaung and another whistleblower quoted in the story.
When working for Sama, Motaung developed PTSD and anxiety from the $2-per-hour content moderation job, which required watching hours of graphic content each day from across Sub-Saharan Africa including videos of beheadings and abuse. When he tried to mobilize over 100 of his colleagues to fight for better working conditions in 2019, he was fired.
Motaung was later named in TIME100Next, a list that recognizes “emerging leaders from around the world who are shaping the future and defining the next generation of leadership.” He is now the plaintiff in a lawsuit accusing Sama and Facebook’s parent company Meta of human trafficking and union busting.
The Signals Network (TSN) is a 501(c)3 organization dedicated to supporting whistleblowers, many of them journalists’ sources, who risk their livelihoods to share public interest information with the press. Founded in 2017 by journalists, whistleblowers and lawyers, TSN operates internationally to hold powerful interests accountable. TSN provides customized support to a selected group of whistleblowers who have contributed to published reports of significant wrongdoing. This support may include legal, psychological, physical safety, temporary safe-housing, online safety, career support and communication support.
For journalist inquiries, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.