The Public Square Project

Reimagining Our Digital Future. A new blueprint for a more democratic digital space.

Creative Directions 2021: Public infrastructure for the digital town square

View the video on Vimeo Early in 2021, the platforms Google and Facebook came under intense scrutiny due to ACCC’s new directives. The ACCC’s platform regulations threw up debates around what is a platform, what their purpose should be, and what role they play...

Podcast: How Australia’s pile of national security legislation stacks up

What powers does the latest legislation give us and is it fit for purpose?

The misinformation engine

It is now six months since Australia’s News Media Bargaining Code was passed into law, and it presents an opportunity to assess the impact of this controversial piece of legislation.

Remembering Steve Rogers, and the struggle for safe access zones

Twenty years ago this week, security guard Steve Rogers was shot and killed inside the Fertility Control Clinic in East Melbourne.

The growing Australian surveillance state

Lizzie O’Shea on Australia’s ever expanding surveillance powers, and if they could actually make us more vulnerable.

The growth of digital surveillance

Lucie Krahulcova is an international digital rights activist and Executive Director of Digital Rights Watch. Lizzie O’Shea is a writer, lawyer and co-founder and chair of Digital Rights Watch. “It should worry us that we are losing rights as surveillance systems grow...

Digital Face-off: The future of news on global technology platforms

The implications of Australia’s contribution to this extraordinary new public policy was discussed by a panel of industry leaders and media insiders.

Vaccine passports are catnip for Big Tech

Digital certificates must be carefully scrutinized to avoid mission creep

Searching the past for a new digital democracy

Lawyer and writer Lizzie O’Shea thinks Lovelace has lessons for us today about we deal with digital technology.

Why the COVIDSafe app didn’t work

Tuesday, March 2, 2021. ABC The Drum Twitter thread.

Humanitech Summit 2021: Putting humanity at the core and in control

Why and how do we need to put humanity at the core and in control? What is at stake if we don’t do this?

Tech Talk – Secret Algorithms, Data Protection and Surveillance Cities

We review the US Senate hearings into social media algorithms, evaluate competing models for data protection and Melbourne’s not-so-secret city.


Future Histories – is the world that we creating – fair, democratic and sustainable? Does it promote equality or inequality?

Tuesday, 4 May 2021. How we can build a sustainable, peaceful and prosperous world through technology as a tool for social good and by looking to history for inspiration.


Prioritising privacy in a digital world

Tuesday 4 May 2021. Panel to discuss managing risks and protecting privacy.

Remaking the Public Square

Thursday, 29 April 2021. The creation of public digital infrastructure.

Tech Talk

Friday, April 23, 2021. Identity Theft, Chippageddon and Facebook’s ‘Supreme Court’.

Reclaiming the power of communication from big tech and government.

Tuesday, 23rd March, 2021. How do we reclaim power over the development of technology?

Podcast: The new law that could censor the internet

Thursday, March 18 2021. The Online Safety Bill and concerns on Freedom of expression.