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March 21 Tuesday

Wikimedia Foundation vs. NSA: Fighting against the chilling effects of online surveillance

  • Tuesday, March 21, 2017 at 12:00PM - 1:00PM
  • Room 128
  • Open To The Public
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Jim Buatti and Zhou Zhou, attorneys at the Wikimedia Foundation (which hosts Wikipedia and its sister projects), will discuss Wikimedia's lawsuit against the NSA for its mass surveillance of internet communications. They will provide background on the “Upstream” surveillance practices at issue and on Wikimedia's decision to sue the government alongside eight co-plaintiffs and with the assistance of the ACLU. They will walk us through the history of the case, Wikimedia's theories concerning the legality and constitutionality of the NSA's activities, and the government's attempts to dismiss the case. Finally, they will discuss recent developments, the future of the case, and Wikimedia's concerns about government surveillance under the new administration. 


Jim Buatti is Associate Counsel at the Wikimedia Foundation. He negotiates and approves the Foundation’s contracts, and advises the legal team on various privacy and intellectual property matters. He first joined the Foundation in early 2015 as a Legal Fellow, and has worked on Wikimedia v. NSA since it was first filed. Prior to joining the Foundation, Jim interned at the Electronic Frontier Foundation and worked as a research assistant to Professor Richard Hasen. Jim is a graduate of the UC Irvine School of Law.

Zhou Zhou is Legal Counsel at the Wikimedia Foundation. In his role, he focuses on providing support for products and technology features at the Foundation. Previously, he was an associate at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher and graduated from Columbia Law School. Prior to law school, Zhou was a software engineer at Salesforce.com and double majored in electrical engineering and computer sciences as well as bioengineering at the University of California, Berkeley. Zhou has been honored as a Transatlantic Digital Debates fellow and Internet Law & Policy Foundry fellow.

Sponsoring Organization(s)

ISP, GLC, TechSoc