Fight for the Future


Fight for the Future celebrates the release of Chelsea Manning

Posted 08:29 EDT on May 11, 2017

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, May 11, 2017
Contact: Evan Greer, 978-852-6457, press@fightforthefuture.org

Grassroots activism helped secure Chelsea’s freedom

Next week, on May 17th, Chelsea Manning will be released after 7 years of incarceration.

Fight for the Future, a free speech organization that has led many of the largest online efforts in support of Chelsea, issued the following statement, which can be attributed to Campaign Director, Evan Greer (pronouns: she/hers.) Greer is a personal friend and close supporter of Manning, and has spoken to her on the phone regularly during the last several years of her imprisonment.

“Chelsea Manning is one of the most courageous and compassionate people I have ever had the privilege to get to know. The world needs people like her now more than ever.

Chelsea’s release is a victory for transparency, democracy, and freedom of expression. It’s a victory for human rights and for LGBTQ people in prison. And it’s a testament to the power of grassroots activism.

Hundreds of thousands of people spoke out in support of Chelsea through petitions, protests, and online campaigns. She has inspired so many of us with her limitless passion and drive to make the world a better place, speak truth to power, and help others.

Fight for the Future is honored to have played a role in helping secure Chelsea Manning’s freedom. We thank all of our supporters who took action to defend her basic rights and draw attention to the government’s inhumane treatment of this brave woman, who was held in conditions that the United Nations condemned as torture.

As for me, I just can’t wait to finally meet Chelsea face to face, and give her a hug.”

Fight for the Future is a digital rights and free speech non-profit best known for organizing some of the largest online protests in history against online censorship and surveillance, and in support of net neutrality. The group has played a leading role in supporting Chelsea Manning over the last several years. Fight for the Future has:

  • Gathered hundreds of thousands of signatures on several petitions opposing the government’s mistreatment of Chelsea.
  • Pushed a Whitehouse.gov petition calling for clemency over the 100,000 signature threshold required to receive a response from President Obama.
  • Launched HappyBirthdayChelsea.com to send Chelsea thousands of personalized cards on her birthday.
  • Assisted Chelsea in releasing statements to the press regarding her hunger strike and in the aftermath of her suicide attempt.
  • Helped publicize legislation that Chelsea drafted while in prison to abolish the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.
  • Launched the #HugsForChelsea campaign which led to a flood of people posting photos of themselves with their arms outstretched, waiting to give Chelsea a hug.
  • Helped promote a GoFundMe campaign that has raised more than $120,000 to assist with Chelsea’s basic survival expenses upon her release.

Learn more at https://www.fightforthefuture.org or follow us on Twitter @fightfortheftr

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What is the FCC hiding? Thousands call for the agency to provide evidence of alleged DDoS attacks that silenced net neutrality supporters

Posted 07:39 EDT on May 11, 2017
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, May 11, 2017
Contact: Evan Greer, press@fightforthefuture.org, 978-852-6457

Fight for the Future has launched a petition calling for the FCC to release its logs to an independent analyst and guarantee that all comments will be counted

Thousands of people have signed a petition calling for the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to come clean about alleged DDoS attacks that the agency claims occurred at the exact same time that comments would have started flooding in from John Oliver’s viral Last Week Tonight segment about net neutrality on Sunday night.

The petition echos Fight for the Future’s demand that the FCC release their logs to an independent security researcher or major media outlet who can verify their claims and inform the public about what really happened here.

“The public wants to know what the FCC is hiding,” said Evan Greer, campaign director of Fight for the Future, “The future of the Internet is too important to be decided without transparency and adequate input from the public. They’ve been lying to us for weeks about net neutrality, it’s very difficult to accept their claims about DDoS attacks when they have provided zero evidence to support them.”

The FCC also claims that they experienced a similar attack after Oliver’s segment on the issue in 2014. The agency has provided zero proof for either of these claims, in the face of the much more likely explanation: the FCC’s system is unprepared to handle large amounts of comments, and turned away tens of thousands of people trying to comment in support of net neutrality.

Gigi Sohn, a former senior staffer at the FCC, said “The official FCC position in 2014 was not that there was a DDoS attack following the John Oliver segment, because there was no clear evidence that such an attack occurred.”

Here’s what we know:

  • The FCC’s servers went down again on Monday night around 8:30pm EST, shortly after the John Oliver segment re-aired on HBO.

  • They have continued to show errors this week. 

  • Former FCC employees deny FCC CIO David Bray’s claim that the agency was hit with a DDoS attack after the John Oliver segment in 2014 and say there was never any evidence of such an attack (see above.)

  • The FCC’s servers were having a variety of problems and went down repeatedly as a result of net neutrality comments in the weeks leading up to the John Oliver segment on Monday. Emails from FCC employees sent to Fight for the Future confirm that they were having “server issues.”

  • In 2014 and 2015 the FCC’s website crashed several times under the weight of net neutrality comments from the public.

  • It can be difficult to distinguish a DDoS attack from a large amount of traffic coming from legitimately concerned citizens looking to file a comment. If the FCC was able to determine that this was a malicious attack, they must have some proof of that, and they should immediately disclose that to the public to verify their claims.

  • The FCC now claims that they have upgraded their site to a “cloud service,” which is consistent with our suspicion that their servers simply buckled under the pressure and they are only now upgrading them, likely after silencing large numbers of pro-net neutrality commenters.

Here is our original statement, which can be attributed to campaign director, Evan Greer, (pronouns: she/hers)

“The FCC’s statement today raises a lot of questions, and the agency should act immediately to ensure that voices of the public are not being silenced as it considers a move that would affect every single person that uses the Internet.

There are two possible scenarios and they are both concerning:

  1. FCC is being intentionally misleading, and trying to claim that the surge in traffic from large numbers of people attempting to comment following John Oliver’s segment amounts to a “DDoS” attack, in order to let themselves off the hook for essentially silencing large numbers of people by not having a properly functioning site to receive comments from the public about an important issue, or

  2. Someone actually did DDoS the FCC’s site at the exact same time as John Oliver’s segment, in order to actively prevent people from commenting in support of keeping the Title II net neutrality rules that millions of people fought for in 2015.

Given Ajit Pai’s open hostility toward net neutrality, and the telecom industry’s long history of astroturfing and paying shady organizations to do their dirty work, either of these scenarios should be concerning for anyone who cares about government transparency, free speech, and the future of the Internet.

The FCC should immediately release its logs to an independent security analyst or major news outlet to verify exactly what happened last night. The public deserves to know, and the FCC has a responsibility to maintain a functioning website and ensure that every member of the public who wants to submit a comment about net neutrality has the ability to do so. Anything less is a subversion of our democracy.”

Fight for the Future was instrumental in the massive grassroots campaign that successfully pushed the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to enact the strongest net neutrality protections in US. history last year. They built the page BattleForTheNet.com, which was responsible for more than ¼ of all the net neutrality comments received by the FCC during its feedback process, and were behind the Internet Slowdown protest, which was supported by more than 40,000 websites including some of the largest on the Web like Kickstarter, Etsy, Netflix, and Tumblr.  

The group also helped take the fight for net neutrality into the streets with creative protest campaigns like Occupy the FCC and the nationwide Internet Emergency protests.

Fight for the Future is best known for their role in the massive online protests against SOPA, the Internet censorship bill, and continues to organize many of the largest protests in the history of the Internet. Over the summer, they organized the high profile Rock Against the TPP tour featuring many celebrities and well known musicians. Learn more at FightFortheFuture.org

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The evidence suggests that the FCC is likely wrong, or lying about claim of DDoS attacks at exact moment of John Oliver net neutrality segment

Posted 12:51 EDT on May 9, 2017
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, May 9, 2017
Contact: Evan Greer, press@fightforthefuture.org, 978-852-6457

Fight for the Future calls for the agency to release its logs to an independent analyst, guarantee that all comments will be counted

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) continues to tell the press that it experienced a DDoS attack at the exact same time that comments would have started flooding in from John Oliver’s viral Last Week Tonight segment about net neutrality on Sunday night. They are now also claiming that they experienced a similar attack after Oliver’s segment on the issue in 2014. The agency has provided zero proof for either of these claims, in the face of the much more likely explanation: the FCC’s system is unprepared to handle large amounts of comments, and turned away tens of thousands of people trying to comment in support of net neutrality.

Here’s what we know:

-The FCC’s servers went down again on Monday night around 8:30pm EST, shortly after the John Oliver segment re-aired on HBO. (See screenshots of our logs showing these errors at the bottom of this post.)

-The FCC’s servers were having a variety of problems and went down repeatedly as a result of net neutrality comments in the weeks leading up to the John Oliver segment on Monday. Emails from FCC employees sent to Fight for the Future confirm that they were having “server issues.”

-In 2014 and 2015 the FCC’s website crashed several times under the weight of net neutrality comments from the public.

-It can be difficult to distinguish a DDoS attack from a large amount of traffic coming from legitimately concerned citizens looking to file a comment. If the FCC was able to determine that this was a malicious attack, they must have some proof of that, and they should immediately disclose that to the public to verify their claims.

-The FCC now claims that they have upgraded their site to a “cloud service,” which is consistent with our suspicion that their servers simply buckled under the pressure and they are only now upgrading them, likely after silencing large numbers of pro-net neutrality commenters.

Here is our original statement, which can be attributed to campaign director, Evan Greer, (pronouns: she/hers)

“The FCC’s statement today raises a lot of questions, and the agency should act immediately to ensure that voices of the public are not being silenced as it considers a move that would affect every single person that uses the Internet.

There are two possible scenarios and they are both concerning:

  1. FCC is being intentionally misleading, and trying to claim that the surge in traffic from large numbers of people attempting to access following John Oliver’s segment amounts to a “DDoS” attack, in order to let themselves off the hook for essentially silencing large numbers of people by not having a properly functioning site to receive comments from the public about an important issue, or

  2. Someone actually did DDoS the FCC’s site at the exact same time as John Oliver’s segment, in order to actively prevent people from commenting in support of keeping the Title II net neutrality rules that millions of people fought for in 2015.

Given Ajit Pai’s open hostility toward net neutrality, and the telecom industry’s long history of astroturfing and paying shady organizations to do their dirty work, either of these scenarios should be concerning for anyone who cares about government transparency, free speech, and the future of the Internet.

The FCC should immediately release its logs to an independent security analyst or major news outlet to verify exactly what happened last night. The public deserves to know, and the FCC has a responsibility to maintain a functioning website and ensure that every member of the public who wants to submit a comment about net neutrality has the ability to do so. Anything less is a subversion of our democracy.”

Fight for the Future was instrumental in the massive grassroots campaign that successfully pushed the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to enact the strongest net neutrality protections in US. history last year. They built the page BattleForTheNet.com, which was responsible for more than ¼ of all the net neutrality comments received by the FCC during its feedback process, and were behind the Internet Slowdown protest, which was supported by more than 40,000 websites including some of the largest on the Web like Kickstarter, Etsy, Netflix, and Tumblr.  

The group also helped take the fight for net neutrality into the streets with creative protest campaigns like Occupy the FCC and the nationwide Internet Emergency protests.

Fight for the Future is best known for their role in the massive online protests against SOPA, the Stop Online Piracy Act, and continues to organize many of the largest protests in the history of the Internet. Over the summer, they organized the high profile Rock Against the TPP tour featuring many celebrities and well known musicians. Learn more at FightFortheFuture.org

Screenshots (PDT timezone) of logs from BattleForTheNet.com showing the FCC’s site went down last night after John Oliver segment re-aired on HBO:

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FCC’s claim that site was hacked during John Oliver’s viral net neutrality segment raises questions

Posted 17:15 EDT on May 8, 2017

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, May 8, 2017
Contact: Evan Greer, press@fightforthefuture.org, 978-852-6457

Fight for the Future calls for the agency to release its logs to an independent analyst, guarantee that all comments will be counted

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has issued a press release claiming that it’s website was hacked with a DDoS attack at the exact same time that comments would have started flooding in from John Oliver’s viral Last Week Tonight segment about net neutrality on Sunday night. The media widely reported that the surge in comments from the segment crashed the FCC’s site, which also happened several times during the massive grassroots mobilization that led to the current FCC rules in 2014 and 2015.

Fight for the Future, a leading digital rights group that has organized some of the largest actions in support of net neutrality, issued the following statement, which can be attributed to Campaign Director Evan Greer (pronouns: she/hers:)

“The FCC’s statement today raises a lot of questions, and the agency should act immediately to ensure that voices of the public are not being silenced as it considers a move that would affect every single person that uses the Internet.

There are two possible scenarios and they are both concerning:

  1. The FCC is being intentionally misleading, and trying to claim that the surge in traffic from large numbers of people attempting to access following John Oliver’s segment amounts to a “DDoS” attack, in order to let themselves off the hook for essentially silencing large numbers of people by not having a properly functioning site to receive comments from the public about an important issue, or 

  2. Someone actually did DDoS the FCC’s site at the exact same time as John Oliver’s segment, in order to actively prevent people from commenting in support of keeping the Title II net neutrality rules that millions of people fought for in 2015.

Given Ajit Pai’s open hostility toward net neutrality, and the telecom industry’s long history of astroturfing and paying shady organizations to do their dirty work, either of these scenarios should be concerning for anyone who cares about government transparency, free speech, and the future of the Internet.

The FCC should immediately release its logs to an independent security analyst or major news outlet to verify exactly what happened last night. The public deserves to know, and the FCC has a responsibility to maintain a functioning website and ensure that every member of the public who wants to submit a comment about net neutrality has the ability to do so. Anything less is a subversion of our democracy.”

Fight for the Future was instrumental in the massive grassroots campaign that successfully pushed the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to enact the strongest net neutrality protections in US. history last year. They built the page BattleForTheNet.com, which was responsible for more than ¼ of all the net neutrality comments received by the FCC during its feedback process, and were behind the Internet Slowdown protest, which was supported by more than 40,000 websites including some of the largest on the Web like Kickstarter, Etsy, Netflix, and Tumblr.  

The group also helped take the fight for net neutrality into the streets with creative protest campaigns like Occupy the FCC and the nationwide Internet Emergency protests.

Fight for the Future is best known for their role in the massive online protests against SOPA, the Stop Online Piracy Act, and continues to organize many of the largest protests in the history of the Internet. Over the summer, they organized the high profile Rock Against the TPP tour featuring many celebrities and well known musicians. Learn more at FightFortheFuture.org

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Crowdfunded billboards appear in districts of lawmakers who voted to gut Internet privacy and allow ISPs to sell consumer data

Posted 10:31 EDT on May 3, 2017

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, May 3, 2017
Contact: Evan Greer, 978-852-6457, press@fightforthefuture.org

“You Betrayed Us” billboards unveiled today targeting Congress members Blackburn, Flake, Rutherford, and Heller

Today Internet activists unleashed billboards in the districts of lawmakers who take large contributions from the telecom industry and voted in March to slash Internet privacy protections, allowing Internet Service Providers (ISPs) like Comcast, AT&T, and Verizon to collect and sell their customer’s personal information without permission.

The billboards were organized by Fight for the Future, a leading anti-censorship and digital rights organization, and paid for through hundreds of small donations collected through a crowdfunding page.

See photos of some of the billboards here: http://imgur.com/a/jgdhJ

“Congress voting to gut Internet privacy was one of the most blatant displays of corruption in recent history,” said Tiffiniy Cheng, co-founder of Fight for the Future, “They might think that they’ve gotten away with it, but they’re wrong. These billboards are just the latest example of the growing public backlash to these attacks on our Internet freedom and privacy.”

“Members of Congress who help monopolies get richer while undermining our online privacy and attacking net neutrality will soon see that they can’t hide from the public on these issues,” she added, “Everyone who drives by one of these billboards will know exactly how much money these lawmakers took in exchange for selling off their basic right to use the web safely, and handing their most personal information to advertisers.”

By using the CRA to gut the FCC broadband privacy rules, these lawmakers voted to allow Internet Service Providers to:

  • Monitor and sell customer’s location data, search history, app usage, and browsing habits to advertisers without your permission
  • Hijack customer’s search results, redirecting their traffic to paying third parties
  • Insert ads into web pages that would otherwise not have them

Fight for the Future was instrumental in the massive grassroots campaign that successfully pushed the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to enact the strongest net neutrality protections in US. history last year. They built the page BattleForTheNet.com, which was responsible for more than ¼ of all the net neutrality comments received by the FCC during its feedback process, and were behind the Internet Slowdown protest, which was supported by more than 40,000 websites including some of the largest on the Web like Kickstarter, Etsy, Netflix, and Tumblr.  

The group also helped take the fight for net neutrality into the streets with creative protest campaigns like Occupy the FCC and the nationwide Internet Emergency protests.

Fight for the Future is best known for their role in the massive online protests against SOPA, the Stop Online Piracy Act, and continues to organize many of the largest protests in the history of the Internet. Over the summer, they organized the high profile Rock Against the TPP tour featuring many celebrities and well known musicians. Learn more at FightFortheFuture.org

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