At CIS I analyzed technical alternatives of Encrypted Media Extensions (EME) [1] draft specification which were proposed in the discussion on public-html mailing list of W3C. I analyzed the alternatives on the strength of content protection, privacy, security, accessibility and interoperability, which are the major points of debate in the EME controversy. The report is not there is public yet. I also did a diversity analysis on the participants of the debate where I found out that out of 48 participants no one was from Asia, Africa or South America. The notebook for this analysis has been added to BigBang as an example [2]. I also spent some time looking at the work of Social Web working group at W3C [3], though nothing concrete came out of it.

Before this I've also worked on Wikipedia Human Gender Indicators [4], a project which highlights gender gap in biographies of wikipedia. I've started getting into the more social/political sides of tech only a year ago, so I don't have a niche yet. My earlier experiences have been more software development oriented, including a Google Summer of Code in SymPy and an internship at Continuum.


  Harsh Gupta

On Fri, Aug 19, 2016, at 04:06 PM, Sebastian Benthall wrote:
Hi Harsh,

Thanks for this introduction and for your contributions so far.
It's great to have you involved in the project.

Niels or Davide would be better able to represent the work going on at Datactive [1].
I can talk about ideas we've been tossing around at Berkeley's School of Information [2] and with a contact at the Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT) [3].

* CDT has confirmed an interest in measuring the effectiveness of civil society in pushing the public interest agenda in the IETF. One project we may work on is finding several cases of public interest related topics, including both advocacy 'successes' and advocacy 'failures', and try to map out how communications played out in each case. The goal for this project would be ideally be to get strategic insight into effective organizing around these kinds of issues.

* I have a research interest in the statistical modeling of communication networks in general. This is related to some of the more advocacy based research but could also be seen as a study in applied math. I am hoping to use BigBang to develop some novel modeling and analysis algorithms for communications metadata.

* An idea that just occurred to me the other day that could be interest which I haven't discussed with anybody yet.... We could also look at crossing data from Internet Governance lists with another data set and see what comes up. I'm thinking specifically the Panama Papers. It's just possible we could detect the influence of offshore finance on Internet governance. That would be quite a find.

Just a few ideas. The project is at this point very open ended. I'd really like to hear more about the work you did for CIS, if you don't mind sharing.

All best,

[1] :
[2] :
[3] :

On Thu, Aug 18, 2016 at 2:27 PM, Harsh Gupta <> wrote:
Hello BigBang developers,

I'm Harsh Gupta, a fifth year undergrad student at Indian Institute of
Technology Kharagpur, studying Mathematics and Computing. I was an
intern at CIS India [1] this summer and used BigBang to do diversity
analysis on the participants of the Encrypted Media Extensions (EME)
debate happening at W3C [2]. I met Sebastian at SciPy in July where he
told me about the plans to use to BigBang to analyze ICANN. I'm in
general interested in the social + political dimensions of technology.

Where can I read more details of the research you plan to carry out, and
what are the ways I can get involved?

I'm hoping to churn out a thesis out the work, a part of which I need to
submit by the end of this semester.


Harsh Gupta
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