Local Groups Resources

About The Page

Welcome to the Local Groups Resources page. It contains resources (how-to-guides, presentations and much more) to be used chiefly by ORG's Local Groups but also by any ORG supporter who wants to raise awareness about digital rights where they live. The resources are produced by ORG staff and supporters. You are encouraged to add anything that you've produced and are happy to share. Create an account to edit ORG Wiki.

General resources

Ideas for Local Group meetings

  • Groups can really do anything, and we welcome new ideas! Here are a few suggestions; you could organise a speaker led meeting, a skills based workshop, a campaign action meeting, hold a joint meeting with another group and explore the intersections they have with digital rights, attend a public event/exhibiton, or even go and see a digital rights film or theatre production.

Activists and surveillance talk

  • Human rights and environmental activists have often been the target for surveillance and policing. OpenDemocracy has done a small study of attitudes of activists towards surveillance and found it severely lacking. This could be a great event to do in partnership with local campaign groups (e.g. UK Uncut, Amnesty International and Friends of the Earth). The authors of the study are now living in Scotland.
  • Joint meetings are a fantastic way to build long term links with other groups in your local community and explore the intersections they have with digital rights.
  • ORG Leeds found a website that includes a directory of over 200 Leeds campaign groups, see if you can find a similar website for your local area. ORG Leeds created a mailing list and are offering the groups to attend privacy workshops.

Blocked! project

  • The government is promoting filters to prevent children and young people from seeing content that is supposed to be for over 18s, but in reality filters block much more than they are supposed to, which means information is being censored.
  • You can hold a meeting to spread the word in your local area why filters block many websites that are not harmful and what they can do to get involved. You can reach out to people who have been blocked by mistake and ask them to speak about their experiences.
  • The Blocked! project is always looking for volunteers to add more cool features to it. You can hold a meeting where a group of you decide to spend a few hours giving your time to develop the project (e.g. software development, testing, translation).
  • You can let your local MP know what you think by contacting them directly, writing a group letter (jointly with other local groups) to your local newspaper or by attending a local meeting (surgery) with your MP.

Citizenfour documentary

Cryptoparty (digital security training / how to protect yourself online)

Digital Economy Bill

Do Not Track documentary series

  • Do Not Track is a personalised documentary series that explores different aspects of how the modern web is increasingly a space where our movements, our speech and our identities are recorded and tracked. You can watch all seven of the episodes (they are all five minutes long). It's an interactive experience that asks you to answer questions to reveal how you are tracked online.
  • Hold a screening of all of the episodes and then organise a discussion afterwards to talk about the privacy issues that were raised.
  • These types of meetings are usually very successful and accessible as they are a fun and easy way to meet up. A challenge in creating new supporters is the fear that you need to have deep knowledge or even expertise to understand or participate, documentaries release some of that pressure.

How does surveillance affect minorities talk

  • The meeting could raise awareness of how online security and surveillance affects minority groups disproportionately. You could also explore the issues of excessive policing and profiling. This could be a good event to do in partnership with local religious minority groups, or anti-racist groups.

Investigatory Powers Act

  • You could educate people about the Investigatory Powers Act and how this affects everyone's digital rights (you can explain the act in the promotion of the meeting and show why people need to protect themselves now more than ever).
  • Organise a day where you get your friends and family to start using Signal for private phone messaging.
  • Work with a local theatre group to do a flashmob in a public place in the theme of surveillance.
  • See the Cryptoparty section of this page for more resources on how to protect yourself online.
  • See the Walking tour of... section of this page for more meeting ideas.

Lightning Talks

  • In a lightning talk each speaker gets 5 minutes and 15 slides (20 seconds per slide) to share their ideas about an issue relating to digital rights (for example it could link to human rights, tech issues, consumer rights), and then the whole groups gets to discuss it. Whether you're new to public speaking, or already experienced, lightning talks are a great opportunity to learn, practice and improve on skills which you can use to give more formal presentations. If you’ve never given a talk before, we'd like to hear from you all the same. We'd like this to kick start many conversations that benefit the group, its members and the ORG community. But this event is also about having fun, and sharing thoughts and ideas.
  • ORG London have put on a number of successful Lightning Talks with ORG supporters - September 2015 meeting and November 2016 meeting

Mozilla Maker Party - EU copyright

  • Organise a Mozilla Maker Party to make illicit digital culture and raise awareness of what people can do to achieve real, progressive changes in copyright.
  • Check out ORG Birmingham's blog on their meeting to find out what they did to make it a success.

Opt out of mobile phone analytics

  • You can organise a meeting raising awareness of the campaign and what people can do to take action and invite different groups of people that have been impacted.
  • You can let your local MP know what you think by contacting them directly, writing a group letter (jointly with other local groups) to your local newspaper or by attending a local meeting (surgery) with your MP.

ORG book talk

  • Invite one of the authors of the ORG book to come and speak about their work and how it links with ORG's campaigns.
  • You could also hold a monthly reading club where everyone reads a chapter of the ORG book and then discusses the ideas that were raised and what your group can actively do about it.

ORG staff speaker

ORG Wiki-Edit-a-Thon

  • Organise a meet up with supporters to edit the ORG Wiki page. This could involve adding and editing content on a particular issue, and updating out of date pages. This is really useful as it builds a database of knowledge to help both our campaigns and the public.
  • Full Fact did a EU Edit-a-Thon with Wikimedia UK.

The Internet's Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz documentary

Threat Modeling workshop (what are digital security threats)

Trade justice and digital rights talk

  • Link up with trade justice groups (War on Want and Global Justice Now) to discuss hosting a talk about including digital rights in a new narrative of trade justice. The talk could cover a wide range of issues; copyright and (lack of) net neutrality, closed-source software, age verification censorship, Internet access and Brexit negotiations.

University academic talk

  • Find out if there are academics in your local area that work on surveillance, privacy and free speech online issues and ask them to come and speak about their research.
  • You could also join up with university groups that work on digital rights issues.

Walking tour of...

  • Team up with other surveillance focused groups to organise a walking tour of your local area's surveillance network or spy base. Here is an example of a surveillance walking tour in New York.

Local Group resources and advice for meetings

Accessibility

Co-organiser

  • Having a Co-organiser for your local group makes your life easier as you can share the work load and have someone to talk through ideas. Ask other members of your group what their skill sets are and whether they can support you and the group.

Costs

  • There is a small fund available for Local Groups. In the past this has been used for promoting meetings, hiring venues, food and paying transport costs for speakers. The fund can also be used for campaigning in your local area and to pay for campaign related training for Local Organisers to become even more effective. Get in touch with us to see if we can support your Local Group. If there has been a cost to putting on the meeting, ask everyone directly as they enter if they can spare £1, £2 to cover the small costs.
  • Everyone likes free food and it can play a small part in getting people to come along to the meeting. Especially if the meeting is held in the evening and so people may be coming straight from work. Try to a have a range of food so that if people have allergies / do not eat certain foods, then they are catered for. Also try not to get foods that are very messy and can spill. Make sure in the promotion of the meeting that you let everyone know that there will be food!

Facilitation

Lobbying your MP

Media

Organising your meeting

Posters

Post-meeting

  • It is very important to follow up with attendees after a meeting to carry on engaging with them.
  • We are dependant on members for their support and so actively ask the people who attend your meetings to sign up to our mailing list. Soon after the meeting email everyone to thank them for coming and share an article/resource with them that relates to the issues that were raised.
  • Andy, the Local Organiser for ORG Leeds had the great idea of setting a challenge for everyone who came to the meeting - for the next meeting everyone had to bring one new person.
  • 'Checklist for encouraging people to stay involved in your group' by Seeds for Change

Power and Privilege

  • We need to communicate and campaign with as broad an audience as possible, and ensure we are open to all kinds of people, explore ways to widen our demographic base and proactively reach out to diverse groups.
  • Find ways to engage with communities that are directly affected by the issues that ORG campaigns on.
  • Other active steps are; having accessible venues, holding events when parents can make them, not having all-male panels, acknowledging race when discussing issues that impact it, using non-technical language when promoting meetings (‘would a 12 year old understand it’ rule), use more people stories when explaining ORG's campaigns.
  • 'Positive group roles' by Eastern Workplace for Workplace Democracy

Promoting your meeting

  • When promoting ORG meetings always include a line saying that you do not need be a tech wizard or a policy expert to attend and participate. These meetings should also be about teaching and getting new skills and knowledge. Convert technical terms and slang into easy to understand terms to make the meetings more accessible. This will help to promote meetings to all audiences.
  • Think about the title of the meeting, clickbait headlines often work (e.g. Why do you need to protect yourself online?), tell people that you have the answer and ask questions.
  • When thinking about how many people will be attending your meeting, roughly half of the people who click attending on your chosen social media site (e.g. Meetup) will actually come through the door.
  • 'Good publicity and outreach' by Seeds for Change

Recording your meeting

Venue

  • When searching for a venue find out if it has disabled toilets and access, wifi, is the location easy to travel to, are you allowed food inside, who else will be using the venue on the day, capacity and what is the hiring cost (always let them know that you are a local voluntary campaign group as this may get the cost down.
  • Venues that have been used in the past include: community spaces, tech company offices, cafes, libraries, hacks spaces, bookshops. Try not to hold the meeting in a pub or a religious space as this will put some people off from attending. Find out where other local campaign/community groups hold their meetings.

Websites that you can publicise your meetings on (please add more!)