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Digital Rights / Digital Wrongs: Tech Policy and Human Rights in Australia

Saturday 9:25 AM–10:10 AM in Hall C
Content warning:

This talk may contain brief references to Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM) and pro-terror material. It may also make reference to adult material such as online pornography. Discussions of such material will not be extensive, nor include graphic descriptions, but may be referenced with regard to content moderation and online safety issues.

Delve into the world of digital rights in Australia, where tech, politics and human rights combine.

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Amidst the latest wave of AI hype, the evolution of social media, and political posturing about “world-leading” legislation to “crack down” on Big Tech, Australian leaders and policymakers appear to be scrambling to respond to the challenges and opportunities of the digital economy. As tech giants race for profit, we find ourselves in a relentless tug-of-war between innovation and regulation. And despite all the rhetoric of ethics and safety, too often we’re presented with reactive, inconsistent, or technically-incoherent policy.

In this battle of egos, what becomes of our digital rights? And how can we collectively forge a socially progressive digital future in Australia?

Join activist, writer and Digital Rights Watch Program Lead, Sam Floreani, for the TL;DR of tech policy and digital rights in Australia. From the sisyphean push for privacy law reform to resisting surveillance; from navigating the complexity of online safety to new frontiers in the Crypto Wars—there is never a dull moment fighting to protect digital rights in Australia. Find out what the heck is happening, why safeguarding digital rights matters, and how technologists can join the fight.

Samantha Floreani she/they • @floreani@hachyderm.io • @samfloreani

Samantha Floreani is a digital rights activist and writer based in Naarm (Melbourne). They are currently the Program Lead at Digital Rights Watch where they advocate for a liberatory digital future in which everyone can thrive.

Samantha's areas of focus include campaigning for privacy law reform, online safety, and resisting surveillance technologies. As the former Program Director for Code Like a Girl and with years of experience as a privacy advocate, Sam has dedicated their career to fighting for fairness in tech—from pushing for gender equity in the tech industry to safeguarding human rights in the digital age.