Nov. 16, 2017 | Washington D.C.
2017 Annual Conference
Trust & Civility in a Challenging World



Nov. 16, 2017

8 a.m. - 7 p.m.


Knight Conference Center at the Newseum

555 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington, DC 20001

This year's theme is "Trust & Civility in a Challenging World”.  We will address a wide range of issues that weaken trust, safety and civility online and the positive ways to respond to these challenges.

The FOSI Annual Conference is the premier gathering of the online safety community.  Hear from leaders in government, industry, the NGO sector as well as leading researchers, academics and practitioners in this growing space.  

We will have the usual mix of keynotes, plenaries, breakout sessions and exhibitors.  And there will be plenty of time for networking in one of DC’s most stunning venues. 

For sponsorship opportunities and information click here.

Interested in exhibiting at this year's conference? Click here for more information. 

For press inquiries please contact us at



Day 1
Nov. 16, 2017
  1. 8 a.m.
    Registration, breakfast & exhibits
  2. 9 a.m.
    Welcome & Opening Remarks

    Sarah Holland, Google and Family Online Safety Institute Chair
    Stephen Balkam, Family Online Safety Institute

  3. 9:15 a.m.
    Launch of FOSI Research

    • Jay Campbell, Hart Research Associates
    • Abigail Davenport, Hart Research Associates

  4. 9:35 a.m.
    The Practical and Policy Implications of our Hyper-Connected Lives

    • Jennifer Hanley, Family Online Safety Institute (Moderator)
    • Emily McReynolds, University of Washington
    • Josh Sherman, Amazon
    • John Verdi, Future of Privacy Forum 

  5. 10 a.m.
  6. 10:10 a.m.
    Lessons from Around the World

    • Stephen Balkam, Family Online Safety Institute 
    • Julie Inman-Grant, Australia's eSafety Commissioner

  7. 10:30 a.m.
    Networking break
  8. 10:50 a.m.
    Fireside chat

    • Kurt Beidler, Amazon
    • Stephen Balkam, Family Online Safety Institute 

  9. 11:10 a.m.
  10. 11:20 a.m.
  11. 11:30 a.m.
    Illegal, Ill-Advised and Online: Our Challenging Digital World

    • Monika Bickert, Facebook
    • Danielle Melfi, Thorn: Digital Defenders of Children
    • Simon Morrison, Google
    • Brooke Scannell, US Congress

  12. 12:10 p.m.
    Breakout: What Would The Jetsons Do? Privacy, Ethics, and the Internet of Things

    • Hillary Cain, Toyota
    • Chris Calabrese, Center for Democracy & Technology
    • Adam Thierer, Mercatus Center

  13. 12:10 p.m.
    Breakout: Technical and Human Solutions to Problematic Behaviors

    • Rob Perogano, Journalist (Moderator)
    • Tracy Bennett, Teen Safe
    • Darren Brelesky, Nickelodeon
    • Patricia Cartes, Twitter 
    • Rachel Martin, Born This Way Foundation 

  14. 12:10 p.m.
    Breakout: Teaching, Parenting, and Hard Online Conversations

    • Kerry Gallagher, ConnectSafely (Moderator)
    • Tami Bhaumik, Roblox
    • Janell Burley Hofmann, Author
    • Abigail Marsh, Carnegie Mellon
    • Princess Young, Department of Homeland Security

  15. 1 p.m.
    Lunch, exhibits & networking
  16. 2 p.m.
    Breakout: Serving Families with Special Needs

    • Jenny Backus (Moderator)
    • Michael Burns, Zift
    • Henry Claypool, Loyola Marymount University
    • Susan Dielgelman, AT&T

  17. 2 p.m.
    Breakout: Why All Offensive Content Isn’t Created Equal

    • Tim Sparapani, SPQR Strategies (Moderator)
    • Susan Bensch, Dangerous Speech Project
    • Heather West, Mozilla

  18. 2 p.m.
    Breakout: 2020 Vision: The Future of Online Safety

    • Larry Magid, ConnectSafety 

  19. 2:55 p.m.
  20. 3:15 p.m.
    Reestablishing Trust and Civility in Our Challenging World

    • Ambassador (ret.) Daniel Sepulveda (Moderator)
    • Sven Gerjets, Mattel
    • Ambassador (ret.) Karen Kornbluh, Council on Foreign Relations

  21. 4 p.m.
  22. 4:45 p.m.
    Closing remarks
  23. 5 p.m.
  24. 7 p.m.


President, Backus Consulting LLC
Founder & CEO, Family Online Safety Institute
Director of Kids and Family, Amazon
Global Ambassador, TeenSafe
VP, Marketing, Roblox
Head of Product Policy and Counterterrorism, Facebook
CEO, Zift
Vice President for Policy, Center for Democracy & Technology
Head of Global Safety Outreach, Twitter
Independent Consultant
Director of Public Affairs, AT&T
Digital Learning Specialist, St. John's Prep
eSafety Commissioner, Australian Government
VP, Legal & Policy, Family Online Safety Institute
Chairman of the FOSI Board, Public Policy Manager, Google
CEO and Co-Founder,
Societal Computing Ph.D. Candidate, School of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University
Researcher, University of Washington Tech Policy Lab
Policy & Development Manager, Thorn: Digital Defenders of Children
Public Policy and Government Relations Manager, Google
Founder & Principal, SPQR Strategies
Senior Research Fellow, Mercatus Center, George Mason University
Vice President of Policy, Future of Privacy Forum
Senior Policy Manager, Mozilla
Program Lead, National Cyber Security Awareness Programs, U.S. Department of Homeland Security