[tor-project] OONI Monthly Report: August 2018

Maria Xynou maria at openobservatory.org
Mon Sep 10 08:55:54 UTC 2018

Hello Tor world,

In August 2018, the OONI team published two research reports examining
internet censorship in Venezuela and South Sudan. We also supported
Zimbabwean communities monitoring censorship events during the 2018
general elections, wrapped up our UX research, created a prototype
Android app for OONI Probe, improved the monitoring of our services and
started research for semi-automated blockpage detection.

Many OONI team members participated in outreach activities, presenting
OONI at the Italian Hacker Camp, Oxford University, FOCI, Geek-Picnic
and at Chaos Constructions.

## Report on internet censorship in South Sudan

In collaboration with our South Sudan partner, The Advocates for Human
Rights and Democracy (TAHURID), we published a joint research report
examining censorship events in South Sudan.

Our report, "South Sudan: Measuring Internet Censorship in the World's
Youngest Nation", is available here:

## Report on internet censorship in Venezuela

In collaboration with our Venezuelan partners, IPYS Venezuela and
Venezuela Inteligente, we published a joint research report examining
recent censorship events in Venezuela.

Our report, "The State of Internet Censorship in Venezuela", is
available here:

## UX research

We wrapped up our UX research in August. As part of our work on
revamping the OONI Probe mobile apps, we interviewed a number of
community members to collect their feedback. We also analyzed the
information submitted via our survey
(https://ooniuxteam.typeform.com/to/a1P0cn &

We are now in the process of determining the next steps (in terms of
which new features to prioritize on) for the revamp of the OONI Probe
mobile apps based on the analysis of information provided via surveys
and interviews.

## New Android prototype app for OONI Probe

We now have a new prototype Android app for OONI Probe!

The Android app includes the Test Results details screen. The UI of all
screens have roughly been implemented and will be further iterated,
polished and improved upon based on designer feedback. The app can run
tests and store them in the database using the old Measurement Kit (MK) API.

The iOS app codebase has been changed to reflect many new improvements
in the Android app, such as Gson-like classes and more custom objects,
instead of using dictionaries and arrays. Furthermore, we have started
the implementation of the new MK API and we're planning to complete it soon.

## Improvements to the monitoring of OONI services

As our infrastructure and user base grows, improving the monitoring of
our infrastructure is essential to serving our users more effectively.
Significant progress on this front was done during August 2018. 

The following ticket lists all of the issues that we identified and
tracks improvements to the monitoring of our infrastructure:

The changes carried out in August include changing all the webserver
configurations of OONI machines and a number of manual tasks.

## Research on semi-automated blockpage and blockserver detection

Currently the OONI pipeline relies on the manual markup of blockpages.

In August we started doing some research on automating the process of
identifying and marking blockpages.

## Provided feedback to the Tor network team on using tor in a
library-like way on mobile

We collaborated with the Tor network team on testing and providing
feedback to the changes they made to make it easier to integrate tor
into mobile platforms.

As part of that we wrote a basic test suite to check if the Tor
integration was working properly and reported the bugs we found.

See: https://trac.torproject.org/projects/tor/ticket/26948

For more context on this, see the following master trac ticket:

## Updated test list

We carried out some research
to (further) update the Eritrean test list:

## Community use of OONI data

### Report on blocking of election watchdog website in Zimbabwe

We supported Zimbabwean communities on the investigation of censorship
events during the 2018 general elections.

Our Zimbabwean partners and friends  - Digital Society of Zimbabwe, MISA
Zimbabwe and Koliwe Majama - published a report on the blocking of
zimelection.com by state-owned TelOne.

Their report is available via the following links:



## Community activities

### OONI presentation at the Italian Hacker Camp

OONI's Simone traveled to Padua to present OONI at the Italian Hacker
Camp (IHC) on 3rd August 2018.

Information about his talk, titled "An update on internet censorship",
is available here:

### OONI lecture at the Annenberg-Oxford Media Policy Summer Institute

OONI's Maria traveled to Oxford to present OONI at the Annenberg-Oxford
Media Policy Summer Institute on 6th August 2018.

As part of her lecture, she explained OONI's methodologies and how
researchers, journalists, policy makers and advocates can use OONI data
as part of their work.

Information about the event is available here:

### OONI keynote at FOCI

OONI's Arturo and Simone traveled to Baltimore to present OONI at FOCI
on 14th August 2018: https://slides.ooni.io/2018/foci/.

Information about their keynote, titled "Growing the Open Observatory of
Network Interference", is available here:

Arturo previously presented OONI at FOCI back in 2012, when the project
was in its infancy. As part of this presentation, Arturo and Simone
provided an update on what OONI has accomplished over the last six
years, what are some of the challenges and what OONI's building next!

### OONI presentations in Russia

OONI's Leonid gave talks at two events in Russia:
1. Geek-Picnic (https://geek-picnic.me/saint-petersburg), on 18th August
2018. Slides: https://slides.ooni.io/2018/geekpicnic/ 

2. Chaos Constructions (https://chaosconstructions.ru/), on 25th August
2018. Slides: https://slides.ooni.io/2018/cc/

As part of his talks, Leonid presented OONI and censorship findings.

## Userbase

In August 2018, OONI Probe was run 241,772 times from 4,483 different
vantage points in 210 countries around the world.

This information can also be found through our stats:

~ The OONI team.

Maria Xynou
Research & Partnerships Director
Open Observatory of Network Interference (OONI)
PGP Key Fingerprint: 2DC8 AFB6 CA11 B552 1081 FBDE 2131 B3BE 70CA 417E

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