Herdict Web

the verdict of the herd

February 25, 2009

The Berkman Center is pleased to announce the official launch of Herdict Web --


-- a tool that employs the distributed power of the Internet community to provide insight into what users around the world are experiencing in terms of web accessibility.

We invite everyone to explore Herdict Web and participate by reporting websites that they cannot access, testing sites that others have reported, or downloading the browser add-on for reporting sites on the fly.

Herdict is a portmanteau of ‘herd’ and ‘verdict.’ Using Herdict Web, anyone anywhere can report websites as accessible or inaccessible. Herdict Web aggregates reports in real time, permitting participants to see if inaccessibility is a shared problem, giving them a better sense of potential reasons for why a site is inaccessible. Trends can be viewed over time, by site and by country.

The project’s mascot -- a sheep -- demonstrates “the verdict of the herd” in a short video:


The brainchild of Professor Jonathan Zittrain (The Future of the Internet--And How to Stop It), Herdict Web builds out from the OpenNet Initiative's research on global Internet filtering. The OpenNet Initiative tests Internet filtering through an academic methodology. Herdict Web takes a different approach, crowdsourcing reports to learn about and display a real-time picture of user experiences around the globe. For more information about the OpenNet Initiative and the book Access Denied: The Practice and Policy of Global Internet Filtering, visit http://opennet.net.

For more about Herdict Web:

  • Visit the Herdict About Us page
  • Sign up for email updates and announcements, including translations of Herdict Web into other languages
  • Check out the Herdict blog
  • Watch and listen to Jonathan Zittrain discussing Herdict Web

Congratulations to the Herdict project team for their terrific work in making Herdict Web a reality!

Last updated

March 10, 2009