MozFest 2023: Activism, Whistleblowers, and the Collective Power of People
Chris Smalls, Angela Davis, Thomas le Bonniec, and others will speak at MozFest virtual from March 20 – 24. The 13th annual Festival celebrates the collective power of people
NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–When whistleblower Thomas le Bonniec was contracted by Apple to work as a Data Analyst, he never anticipated his job would include eavesdropping on people’s most intimate conversations. Four years after his exposé on Apple’s mass surveillance, le Bonniec will speak at Mozilla Festival (MozFest) on what hasn’t changed and why privacy remains a hot potato in Big Tech regulation.
Le Bonniec, Amazon union leader and founder Chris Smalls, and acclaimed scholar and political activist Angela Davis are just some of the speakers at MozFest this March 20 – 24 online.
This year’s MozFest theme — The Collective Power of People — explores how movements are core to catalyzing change online, and how people-driven technologies can address critical issues at the intersection of tech and society.
‘This year we are holding conversations on how our social and political realities interweave with the technology we build,’ says Sarah Allen, Mozilla Festival Director. ‘Social justice movements advocating for human dignity, fairness, and equity are heavily rooted in activism — and we want to ignite the spirit of activism in how we approach AI.’
MozFest is a unique hybrid: part art, tech and society convening; part maker festival; and the premiere gathering for activists fighting for a more humane digital world.
The festival will feature 8,000+ participants; 400+ hands-on sessions; and 30+ lightning talks and art exhibits. MozFest takes place online, and tickets are available here as pay-what-you-can.
MozFest 2023 Key Highlights:
400+ interactive sessions. Sessions immerse audiences in critical topics such as privacy and security, AI transparency, and the ethics of AI-generated art. For example:
- Is my phone listening to me? | Speaker: Thomas le Bonniec
- Can AI Art be ethical? | Speaker: Azariah Cole-Shephard
30+ lightning talks. Lightning talks provide TED-style conversations on topics like tech diversity, climate change, and cyber safety. For example:
- Climate Change and Internet Disruption: A Case of Floods in Pakistan
- Encryption Post-Roe: The Future of Abortion Activism?
Dialogues & Debates. These centerpiece panels unpack urgent issues at the intersection of tech and society. More information available here. For example:
- People Make Movements | A look at activism and movements in digital spaces. Speakers: Valeriia Voshchevska, Ukrainian human rights activist and Tara Aghdashloo, Iranian writer and filmmaker. Moderated by Pulitzer awardee Alia Malek.
- Funding Ethical Tech & The Next Mozilla Chapter | Mozilla is turning 25 this year, and is growing to include new entities such as Mozilla Ventures. Speakers: Mitchell Baker, CEO Mozilla Corporation; Imo Udom, SVP Innovations Ecosystems; Mohamed Nanabhay, Managing Partner, Mozilla Ventures; Pelonomi Moiloa, lelapa.ai; and J.Bob Alotta, VP Global Programs Mozilla Foundation. Moderated by Mozilla’s Carys Afoko.
Reflections on ‘Parable of the Sower.’ MozFest is in its second year of integrating the beloved sci-fi tome “Parable of the Sower” by Octavia Butler. This year, the parable experience tackles the roots of systemic oppression and community-led solutions in the face of climate catastrophe, criminalization, and exploitation. Notable speakers include Salimatu Amabebe (they/he), a trans Nigerian-American chef and multimedia artist; and musician Toshi Reagon, writer and performer of the Parable of the Sower rock-opera.
Press contact: Helena Dea Bala | [email protected]