Blog

A future that suddenly feels possible

Tapestry, a new Kickstarter proposing a unified inbox for social media, might be a glimpse of a human-centered future enabled by data portability.

Reflections from Brussels in the snow

Chris Riley writes a few thoughts on the state of data portability policy in the European Union as the DMA approaches its historic effective date.

Announcement of Data Transfer Summit - Empowerment through Portability

Upcoming event convenes academics, regulators and industry in DC to discuss difficult policy questions and the future of data portability policy.

A Threat Model for Data Portability Using a Reference Architecture

Define categories of threats to data transfer, and examine which threats are easiest to handle with a reference architecture.

DTI’s Portability Predictions for 2024

Happy New Year! We're starting the year with a few predictions for the year ahead for data portability. At DTI, we expect a big year ahead!

Data Portability and the Metaverse – Q&A with Joe Jerome

DTI's Director of Policy Delara interviews Joe Jerome in advance of DTI's future event showcasing Joe and other scholars writing on portability.

A Reference Architecture for Portability Threat Modeling

Before starting to describe a threat model for data portability, we will need some core use cases and a reference architecture.

The future of generative AI is personal – and portable?

Generative AI news fills all inboxes. But a key question of its future isn't yet being asked -- will users be locked in, or will their data be portable?

A framework for trusted, safe third-party data transfers

At DTI, we're looking to build a framework to establish trust between data hosts and recipients, keeping users safe and empowered at the same time.

Global developments in data portability law

Five years after GDPR, policymakers around the world have a new, or renewed, interest in data portability. DTI is engaging in this growing landscape.

Metrics for success in data portability work

How do you measure success? It's more than the KPIs or OKRs. At DTI we're articulating outcomes, capacities, and outputs to tell our story of impact.

Building a more portable future for text-based social

At DTI, we’re starting to dig into portability solutions for something we’ve been calling “text-based social media” – think Mastodon, Threads, Bluesky, and the-service-formerly-known-as-Twitter. In a social space, the problems are both technical and social problems, and the solutions must be as well.

Data portability serves multiple goals

Competition is a compelling narrative to support data portability policy, and with the implementation of Europe’s Digital Markets Act taking headlines, it’s often front of mind. It’s important to remember that competition is not the only lens...

Publishing the newsletter as a blog

Our newsletter has been going out by email without our own permanent page and link, but here we are with a blog section at dtinit.org now.

Data is binary, but that doesn’t make portability simple.

Data sometimes feels like the simplest thing in the world. It’s just a bunch of 1’s and 0’s, right? Often we treat all data the same. For portability, however, we cannot

Law isn’t code. The vote is just the beginning.

In the data portability world, foundational laws like the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation and California’s privacy laws provide users with the right to request their data from businesses, and the Digital Markets Act in Europe imposes additional portability duties on designated gatekeepers. But tech policy doesn’t stop being relevant when laws are adopted; to the contrary, that’s when the real work begins.

Data Transfer Initiative Welcomes Expanded Team & Launches Newsletter

It is hard for me to believe that it has only been a few short months since the launch of the Data Transfer Initiative. Since I started, I’ve traveled to DC and Brussels, spoken on panels and government workshops (check out my slides from the European Commission’s “The DMA and data related obligations” workshop here), published a policy one-pager and written new articles on data portability, and met with policymakers, civil society organizations, and industry stakeholders. And I’ve done it all as DTI’s sole full-time employee.

It's hard to measure the value of data (transfers).

Data’s fundamental characteristics, including its non-rivalrous nature and its ability to capture key learnings about the past and present – and even, as we see clearly through today’s explosion of large language models, predict the future – allow for an incredible range of valuable use cases, including through the combination of data across sources and across users. But some of the most valuable data is personal data, in which people have privacy rights and (in many countries) robust legal protections.

Communications, information, tools, and pathways

Thoughts on how to communicate DTI's work effectively, and how the multiplicity of channels landscape parallels data portability.

The complex problem space of data portability

Articulating the landscape of portability-related problems as classic data portability, protocol interoperability, bulk data transfers, and continuous and realtime portability.

Data Transfer Initiative Launch

Since its founding in 2018, I’ve watched DTP with interest and enthusiasm [...] I’m pleased to announce the creation of the Data Transfer Initiative (DTI), a new non-profit organization that will house DTP and support the work that DTP started, with DTP remaining an open source project as part of DTI.