Non-profit

Open Technology Institute

Website:

newamerica.org

Location:

Washington, DC

Tax ID:

52-2096845

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(3)

Budget (2021):

Revenue: $40,604,855
Expenses: $37,236,889
Assets: $57,037,802

Type:

Grantmaking Project

Project of:

New America

Formation:

1998

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The Open Technology Institute is a program of New America (formerly the New America Foundation) that promotes policies dealing with digital access and issues related to technology and communications. 1

Policy Positions

Net Neutrality

The Open Technology Institute has repeatedly backed “net neutrality” and other regulations on internet providers and communications companies. The Open Technology Institute is also a member of the Detroit Digital Justice Coalition, which pushes for “digital justice” and demands that “all members of our community have equal access to media and technology.” 2 3

Opposition to Internet Content Age Restrictions

Arguing that “content-based restrictions will have unintended consequences for people from vulnerable communities,” the Open Technology Institute has opposed laws that block minors from inappropriate and harmful content, partially by publishing a report on the growing trend of state laws regulating access to online pornography. 4 The report was cited in an article opposed to protections for children from harmful content on the internet, which decried “the Supreme Court’s perhaps concerning refusal to block a Texas statute requiring pornographic websites” to require age verification. 5

Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act

The Open Technology Institute has supported the continuation of Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, writing against a proposal to let the rule expire. 6 The law has been used by social media companies to avoid being sued as publishers for the content on their websites, and has led to criticisms of bias in content moderation. 7

Opposition to TikTok Ban

The Open Technology Institute was listed among the supporters of a letter opposing recent efforts to ban TikTok in the United States or compel divestiture of the platform by the Chinese company ByteDance. 8 The head of the Open Technology Institute, Lilian Coral, commented on the ban, arguing that the law is “protectionism” and would “quicken the world’s retreat from an open internet.” 9

Funding

The Open Technology Institute is a program of New America, which receives funding from other grantmaking foundations. In 2022, New America had total revenues of $40,228,424, and total assets of $84,345,810. New America also donates to third parties. In 2022, New America donated $241,786 to the Hopewell Fund, $170,000 to Careerwise Colorado, and $100,000 to the Nonprofit Finance Fund, among others. 10

Pivotal Ventures LLC donated $5,750,000 to New America in 2019, with the grant period ending in 2024. Pivotal Ventures LLC is a private company created by Melinda Gates that focuses on women’s issues. 11 12 The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation also donated $4.9 million to New America for a “new practice lab” in 2023. 13

In 2020, the Ford Foundation donated $5 million to New America, with the grant period ending in 2025, for “program capacity building.” 14

People

Lilian Coral is the vice president of technology and democracy programs at New America, and the head of the Open Technology Institute. 15 Prior to joining the New America team, she worked to develop the Smart Cities strategy at the Knight Foundation, where she was the director of national strategy and technology innovation. 16 Coral also worked as chief data officer for Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti (D). 17

References

  1. “Open Technology Institute.” New America. Accessed June 17, 2024. https://www.newamerica.org/oti/about/.
  2. “Detroit Digital Justice Coalition Principles.” Detroit Digital Justice Coalition. Accessed June 17, 2024. https://www.detroitdjc.org/principles/.
  3. “Open Technology Institute.” New America. Accessed June 17, 2024. https://www.newamerica.org/oti/about/.
  4. “Age Verification: The Complicated Effort to Protect Youth Online.” New America. Accessed June 17, 2024. https://www.newamerica.org/oti/reports/age-verification-the-complicated-effort-to-protect-youth-online/the-path-forward-minimizing-potential-ramifications-of-online-age-verification/#1-explore-alternative-solutions-that-may-more-effectively-address-concerns-surrounding-youth-online-safety.
  5.  Bernard, Tim. “Age Verification in the United States: Insights from the Open Technology Institute.” Tech Policy Press, May 9, 2024. https://www.techpolicy.press/age-verification-in-the-united-states-insights-from-the-open-technology-institute/.
  6. “Congress Should Not Sunset Section 230, Says OTI.” New America, May 22, 2024. https://www.newamerica.org/oti/press-releases/congress-should-not-sunset-section-230-says-oti/.
  7. Neidig, Harper. “GOP Steps up Attack over Tech Bias Claims.” The Hill, March 19, 2019. https://thehill.com/business-a-lobbying/434837-gop-steps-up-attack-over-tech-bias-claims/.
  8. “A TikTok Ban Violates the First Amendment.” X (formerly Twitter). Accessed June 17, 2024. https://x.com/TikTokPolicy/status/1769836841451024741.
  9. “Senate’s Passage of TikTok Ban Provisions Hastens World’s Retreat from an Open Internet, Says OTI.” New America, April 23, 2024. https://www.newamerica.org/oti/press-releases/senates-passage-of-tiktok-ban-provisions-hastens-worlds-retreat-from-an-open-internet-says-oti/.
  10. “New America.” Cause IQ. Accessed June 17, 2024. https://www.causeiq.com/organizations/new-america,522096845/.
  11. “Our Funding.” New America. Accessed June 17, 2024. https://www.newamerica.org/our-funding/.
  12. “Our Work.” Pivotal Ventures. Accessed June 17, 2024. https://www.pivotalventures.org/work.
  13. “Our Funding.” New America. Accessed June 17, 2024. https://www.newamerica.org/our-funding/.
  14. “Our Funding.” New America. Accessed June 17, 2024. https://www.newamerica.org/our-funding/.
  15. “Lilian Coral.” New America. Accessed June 17, 2024. https://www.newamerica.org/our-people/lilian-coral/.
  16. “Author – Lilian Coral.” Knight Foundation. Accessed June 17, 2024. https://knightfoundation.org/author/lilian-coral/.
  17. “Lilian Coral.” New America. Accessed June 17, 2024. https://www.newamerica.org/our-people/lilian-coral/.
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Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: December - November
  • Tax Exemption Received: July 1, 1998

  • Available Filings

    Period Form Type Total revenue Total functional expenses Total assets (EOY) Total liabilities (EOY) Unrelated business income? Total contributions Program service revenue Investment income Comp. of current officers, directors, etc. Form 990
    2021 Dec Form 990 $40,604,855 $37,236,889 $57,037,802 $12,496,019 N $39,659,892 $907,319 $2,697 $2,460,416
    2020 Dec Form 990 $48,308,665 $35,998,987 $58,863,167 $17,682,586 N $46,682,652 $821,253 $131,261 $2,460,868
    2019 Dec Form 990 $42,059,614 $38,076,573 $43,166,127 $14,284,380 N $40,455,040 $11,571 $153,300 $2,629,267 PDF
    2018 Dec Form 990 $36,798,952 $38,460,621 $38,952,203 $14,049,876 N $35,158,683 $34,463 $105,183 $2,357,923 PDF
    2017 Dec Form 990 $39,313,077 $36,069,449 $39,928,890 $13,140,792 N $37,653,997 $11,785 $59,632 $2,313,940 PDF
    2016 Dec Form 990 $37,973,732 $37,245,071 $31,923,636 $8,352,035 N $36,528,168 $15,563 $50,597 $2,405,814 PDF
    2015 Dec Form 990 $33,509,594 $25,649,786 $26,286,378 $3,443,282 N $33,232,227 $14,456 $72,642 $1,523,060 PDF
    2014 Dec Form 990 $20,315,920 $21,539,240 $16,714,848 $1,731,560 N $20,219,546 $16,002 $78,946 $696,179 PDF
    2013 Dec Form 990 $19,874,779 $19,408,369 $17,873,179 $1,666,571 N $19,432,725 $6,593 $106,718 $1,353,727 PDF
    2012 Dec Form 990 $22,258,222 $21,634,831 $18,102,949 $2,362,751 N $21,814,326 $3,305 $182,469 $1,282,542 PDF
    2011 Dec Form 990 $17,188,491 $15,424,254 $16,830,752 $1,713,945 N $16,734,129 $0 $217,820 $363,201 PDF

    Additional Filings (PDFs)

    Open Technology Institute

    740 15TH ST NW STE 900
    Washington, DC 20005-1031