Electronic Frontiers Australia (EFA) is today holding the first of a number of events to celebrate the organisation’s 20th anniversary. Founded in January 1994 to protect and promote the civil liberties of users of electronic communications systems, EFA has grown to become the major voice in Australia promoting and advocating for digital freedom, access and privacy.
Tonight’s 20th anniversary event coincides with the conclusion of this week’s Linux Australia conference and provides an opportunity for EFA to acknowledge Senator Scott Ludlam with a Lifetime Achievement Award as a leading advocate for the digital rights of Australians.
Current EFA Chair, Dr Sean Rintel, said today:
“It is a special achievement for a non-profit community organisation to reach the 20 year mark. In that time EFA has risen to become a highly visible advocate for Australians' digital rights.
“We have run many public awareness programs, such as the very successful Open Internet campaign against internet filtering and the current Citizens Not Suspects campaign against surveillance overreach. This year we are expanding our efforts to include commissioning academic research to inform government and corporate decision-making.”
Former EFA Chair Kim Heitman said, “EFA has been Australia’s volunteer voice for Internet freedom for 20 years, meeting the challenges of Government and private attacks on net users and working hard to keep the Net open to all. In campaigns against censorship, time after time EFA has explained that State and Federal governments are over-reaching and doomed to fail no matter how draconian the penalties.”
Brendan Molloy, current EFA Board member and a leading young Australian digital rights advocate, said “I’d like to acknowledge the support of all of the members, volunteers and donors that have been involved with EFA over the last 20 years. I'm only a year older than EFA itself, and am excited to be part of a new generation of digital defenders ready to take up the fight to ensure a free and open Internet continues to exist for future generations.”
Dr Rintel concluded:
“Australia has among the highest take-up levels of fixed and mobile Internet use in the world, and we will use our 21st year to advocate even more strongly for an Australian bill of digital rights.
20th Anniversary Event Details
Venue: Varsity Bar
Time: 6pm onwards
Other: Senator Scott Ludlam will be attending the event and will be awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award, and may answer questions from the media.