Partners Announce Initiative at Consumer Electronics Show; Urge Tech Industry to Collective Action
- Intel, Vox Media, Re/code and Born This Way Foundation are coming together to co-create Hack Harassment (#hackharassment), a new initiative to fight online harassment and create safer, more inclusive online experiences.
- Technology and media industries, nonprofits, academia, influencers and thought leaders, and members of online communities are encouraged to join the initiative.
- Hack Harassment will host a series of hackathons later this year to increase accountability, advance anti-harassment technology solutions and effect positive change.
INTERNATIONAL CONSUMER ELECTRONICS SHOW, Las Vegas, Jan. 7, 2016 – Intel, Vox Media, Re/code and Born This Way Foundation are coming together to co-create Hack Harassment (#hackharassment), a new, collaborative initiative to fight online harassment and provide safer, more inclusive online experiences.
The initiative was announced today by Intel CEO Brian Krzanich, Vox Media Chairman and CEO Jim Bankoff, Re/code Executive Editor and Co-Founder Kara Swisher, and Born This Way Foundation Co-Founder and President Cynthia Germanotta at the International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
“Online harassment is pervasive and can be vicious,” said Krzanich. “If we’re to truly succeed in a smart and connected world, we need to remember that behind every device, game, sensor or network is a real person with real feelings and real needs for safety. No one company can address this issue alone – as an industry, we need to work together to create a safer, more inclusive online experience.”
Through Hack Harassment, Intel, Vox Media, Re/code and Born This Way Foundation aim to encourage collaboration across the technology industry and beyond by harnessing the power of innovation to fight online harassment. The companies urged the technology industry, media industry, nonprofit organizations, academia, influencers and thought leaders, and members of online communities to join the initiative.
“We want to lend our support to raise awareness and accountability of online harassment,” said Bankoff. “As a company that is built on the notion of open expression online, we want to do our part to protect individuals and communities who seek to communicate without fear of harassment. We invite all media companies to join us in this effort.”
To further understand the technology industry’s relationship to the issue of online harassment, Intel, Vox Media, Re/code and Born This Way Foundation recently conducted a representative survey of technology professionals living in the United States. Notable findings include:
- Eighty-four percent of technology professionals believe there is real-life risk and emotional impact for the person being harassed online—most commonly a damaging impact on the victim’s reputation (75 percent) and the potential to influence self-harm (66 percent).
- More than 6 in 10 technology professionals think that the tech industry is not doing enough to prevent online harassment.
- More than 8 in 10 technology professionals agree that the tech industry needs to do more to prevent online harassment.
- More than 80% of tech professionals agree taking actions to prevent online harassment could be effective.
- In terms of possible deterrents and solutions, 75 percent of technology professionals believe a universal code of online conduct would help curb harassment, 51 percent believe that blocking IP addresses of known harassers would be very effective, and 47 percent believe building more tools into sites to allow users to block or report content would be very effective.
“Online harassment violates an individual’s basic right to feel safe and respected. Our young people are spending more time online than ever before, making it more important than ever before to face this problem head on. Working together, we can find smart solutions and make meaningful change, ensuring that every young person can make their voices heard without fear of harassment,” said Germanotta.
Intel, Vox Media, Re/code and Born This Way Foundation announced that as a first step, they intend to host a series of hackathons through Hack Harassment later this year. These hackathons will be online and in-person sessions that are participatory in design, outcome-driven and community-led. The goal is not just one of awareness but to also increase accountability, advance anti-harassment technology solutions and effect positive change.
“The Internet is a digital environment, but it is made up of very real people and, unfortunately, sometimes very real threats,” said Swisher. “It will take a solution-oriented approach with a variety of stakeholders to make the impact that’s needed to stop the kind of online harassment that too many suffer on a daily basis.”
Intel, Vox Media, Re/code and Born This Way Foundation plan to share findings, recommendations and progress from Hack Harassment at Re/code’s annual Code Conference, taking place May 31-June 2.
For more information about this initiative, visit www.hackharassment.com.
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About Vox Media
Vox Media is redefining the modern media company by empowering the smartest digital voices with the technology to create and distribute premium content, and connect with an audience of 170 million affluent and educated young adults worldwide. Vox Media is eight distinct brands: Vox.com (News), The Verge (Technology and Culture), Re/code (Technology and Business), SB Nation (Sports) Polygon (Gaming), Eater (Food and Nightlife), Racked (Shopping, Beauty and Fashion), and Curbed (Real Estate and Home). Vox Media’s investors include Accel Partners, Comcast Ventures, Khosla Ventures, General Atlantic, and NBC Universal. www.voxmedia.com
Launched in 2014 and acquired by Vox Media in 2015, Re/code is a leading source of tech and media business news and analysis, drawing a highly influential, dedicated, and informed audience. Founded by renowned journalists Kara Swisher and Walt Mossberg, Re/code aims to reimagine tech business journalism, following the success of AllThingsD and D: All Things Digital conferences, which were also founded by Swisher and Mossberg. Re/code produces the gold standard of tech and business conferences, known for their substance, quality, and unparalleled access to the biggest names in media, tech, and advertising.
About Lady Gaga’s Born This Way Foundation
Led by Lady Gaga and her mother Cynthia Germanotta, Born This Way Foundation was founded in 2012 to support the wellness of young people and empower them to create a kinder and braver world. Born This Way Foundation achieves this by shining a light on real people, quality research and authentic partnerships. Working with more than 50 non-profit organizations, Born This Way Foundation has connected over 150,000 young people with services and programming in their communities. Born This Way Foundation has also partnered with the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, the National Council for Behavioral Health, and the National Association of School Psychologists to collect data from more than 2,500 young people. This research, presented before the American Psychological Association, improved our understanding of young people’s views of mental-health services and delivery methods. https://bornthisway.foundation/