Human rights videos are currently disseminated through a variety of traditional and new media outlets. While these services have allowed many important human rights videos to reach an unprecedented audience, they are currently inadequate in two ways. First, none of the existing solutions have the proper alignment of incentives to effectively and fully support human rights media. Second, no existing service provides both secure anonymous uploading mechanisms and tools to ensure the anonymity of the videos’ subjects.
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In addition to being uniquely incentivized to support human rights media, Pharos solves another critical problem that no other existing organization solves: anonymity. Pharos offers anonymity in two ways. First, people can upload their human rights videos anonymously, so that oppressive governments cannot trace the video to a specific individual. Second, Pharos offers services to strip metadata and blur identifiable faces in the videos themselves. Neither of these services are currently offered by any of the organizations presented above. Anonymity has simply not been as important in the past, because it was difficult or impossible to trace the origin of a video or identify the people in it. As governments grow increasingly tech-savvy, however, we believe anonymization services will become crucial for human rights organizations that wish to receive important content without putting their sources in danger.