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Lumen
Project

Lumen

Lumen collects and studies online content removal requests, providing transparency and supporting analysis of the Web’s takedown “ecology,” in terms of who sends requests, why, and to what ends. Lumen seeks to facilitate research about different kinds of complaints and requests for removal – legitimate and questionable – that are being sent to Internet publishers, platforms, and service providers and, ultimately, to educate the public about the dynamics of this aspect of online participatory culture.

Conceived and developed in 2002 by then-Berkman Center Fellow Wendy Seltzer, Lumen (until recently known as Chilling Effects) was nurtured with help from law school clinics at Berkeley, Stanford, University of San Francisco, University of Maine, George Washington School of Law, Santa Clara University School of Law, and Harvard Law School’s Cyberlaw Clinic (based at the Berkman Klein Center).

Initially focused on requests submitted under the United States’ Digital Millennium Copyright Act, Lumen now includes complaints of all varieties, including those concerning trademark, defamation, and privacy, both domestic and international.  Currently, the Lumen database contains millions of removal requests, and grows by more than 20,000 notices per week, from companies such as Google, Twitter, YouTube, Wikipedia, Reddit, Medium, Github, Vimeo, and Wordpress. Because of recent dramatic increases in notice volume, in 2014 the project upgraded to a more robust, scalable website that provides more granular data and API access for notice submitters and researchers.

Lumen is supported by gifts from Google. All individual and corporate donors to the Berkman Klein Center agree to contribute their funds as gifts rather than grants, for which there are no promised products, results, or deliverables.


Our Work 02

Event
Apr 9, 2018 @ 12:00 PM

Remedies for Cyber Defamation

Criminal Libel, Anti-Speech Injunctions, Forgeries, Frauds, and More

“Cheap speech” has massively increased ordinary people’s access to mass communications -- both for good and for ill. How has the system of remedies for defamatory, privacy… More

Event
Apr 17, 2007 @ 12:30 PM

Sacked by Copyright: DMCA Takedowns and Free Expression

Wendy Seltzer, Berkman Fellow

Wendy Seltzer, founder of Chilling Effects, discussed "Sacked by Copyright: DMCA Takedowns and Free Expression." More


Community 02

Dutch Doc Wins 'Forget My Suspension' Case

Google must remove search results about medical regulators' conditional suspension of a Dutch physician in the first "right to be forgotten" case of its kind in the European Union.

Jan 23, 2019

How Turkey silences journalists online, one removal request at a time

Ahmed Zidan references Lumen database in article connected to censorship and journalism in Turkey.

Aug 13, 2018

People 03

Point of Contact

Team

Wendy Seltzer

Fellows Advisory Board