Table of Contents

About Working With EFF


For all jobs and internships, the following applies:
  • EFF offices are located in San Francisco, CA, USA.
  • All applications for paid jobs (of which there are currently none) should be sent via e-mail only to, unless otherwise noted.
  • For internships please read the following information and email to the relevant intern address that you will find below in the area in which you have interest.
  • Please do not call, fax or send applications or résumés to our address, unless otherwise noted.
  • Please feel free to submit a pointer to a résumé on a web page, unless otherwise noted.
  • EFF is an equal opportunity employer, and encourages people of all genders, ethnicities, national origins, orientations, etc., to apply.
  • No relocation assistance of any kind available, unless otherwise noted

Job Openings

[none presently available]

Internship/Volunteer Opportunities (unpaid)

Why Intern With EFF?

  • Experience a hands-on introduction to a world-renowned nonprofit organization working right in the middle of some of the most exciting, important and cutting-edge issues on the electronic frontier.
  • Gain increased and valuable knowledge of the Internet, electronic commerce, politics, communications technology, hot legal issues, NGO operations, and more.
  • Take on résumé-building responsibilities including: event planning, speaking engagements, fundraising, press and industry interviews, policy analysis & legal support work in the newest areas the law has to offer, technical and market proofs-of-concepts, and many others.
  • Develop insight into understanding the privacy, security, fair use, free expression, and other issues facing society as we enter the information era.
  • Gain experience with project coordination and execution, creative and advanced development of new ideas, and the trust and confidence that comes from succeeding in a fast-paced environment of self-starter experts and experts-in-the-making.
  • Get exposure to VIPs on all sides of the issues, unique opportunities unavailable in the commercial sector, and association with one of the best organizational reputations in the online world.
  • Be treated with mutual respect and get to work on projects that really make a difference, in a collegial atmosphere of teamwork.

General Intern Requirements

EFF does not have paid internships, and cannot provide stipends (except for specific things, like travel to an EFF event you are assisting at, etc.)

Interns (and volunteers) work closely with EFF staff and volunteers to execute legal, educational, technical and research and public relations programs in EFF-sponsored projects, legislative and policy issues, and in coordinated efforts with other organizations. Responsibilities may include: conducting legal and other research, pitching media ideas with the press, speaking with existing and potential EFF sponsors, developing and writing legal and media materials, and fielding incoming media and interested parties requests as appropriate, among many others that vary with the position.

Basic requirements include: Strong writing and oral communication skills, in addition to advanced use of personal computer tools (word processors, spreadsheets, database tools, e-mail, and web browsers; at least basic HTML experience preferred). Dedication and willingness to work hard. Attention to detail and ability to meet deadlines. Better-than-average knowledge of your field, with at least a working understanding of the issues EFF is devoted to. Preferred fields: Law and Pre-Law, Communications, Public Relations, Journalism, English, Computer Science, Information Systems, Political Science, and/or Business.

Unless therwise noted, please inquire by sending a brief, text-only email message to, or

Include information about your interests, experience and skills (résumés OK), and state the time frame in which you would be available, as well as whether you are located in the San Francisco Bay Area (or would be able to come here). While "virtual" (long-distance) internships and volunteer work are possibilities, we would prefer at this time to place interns in our office to work directly with existing staff on time-sensitive matters.

Legal InternsMedia InternsCAFE Project Research AssistantsPerl & CGI Scripting AssistantsWeb Archival & Research Assistant (LONG term!) or  Blue Ribbon Campaign Project Interns

Legal Interns

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) currently has as many legal intern applications for Spring and Summer 2002 as we can process. Please check back in a couple of months for Fall 2002. Thanks.

Candidates should be law students, preferably second or third year students, who have had coursework in either constitutional law and/or intellectual property law as well as civil or criminal proceedure. Interested candidates should be prepared to be a key part of a fast-paced, cutting edge legal team.

Projects include litigation work on property issues such as anti-circumvention, contributory and vicarious copyright infringement, fair use, domain name disputes and reverse engineering. In other areas of the law we focus on anonymous speech, government surveillance online, censorware, and cryptography.

We currently have active cases in front of District, Appellate and the Supreme Court(s) at the federal level and in various state courts.

Candidates should be available at least 2 days per week (or a minimum of 10 hours per week) during the summer and 6-8 hours a week in the fall and winter to work in the EFF San Francisco office.

For more details on our legal efforts, see our Active Legal page.

Contact: Please email writing sample and resume to Henry Schwan, EFF Paralegal, at

Media Intern

The Electronic Frontier Foundation seeks an Media intern to focus on media tasks such as media interview assignments, media releases, media professional relationships, and mediabase and media coverage archival.

Basic HTML skills and general computer competence necessary. Very helpful if you have your own laptop and/or home Internet access.

Interns will be in the San Francisco Bay Area, and in the EFF office at least two days per week. School credit may be available.

Timeframe: Needed immediately, for each semester. Minimum commitment 2 days per week for at least three months.

Contact: Will Doherty, Online Activist / Media Relations,

CAFE Project Research Assistants

Our Campaign for Audiovisual Free Expression is in dire need of interns for online and offline research, in all of the folling areas and more:

  • online music distribution business models that provide alternatives to the mainstream recording industry's model;
  • success stories in online music distribution using alternate business models;
  • legal materials relating to online content and intellectual property law;
  • find sympathetic artists' and getting their (or their agents') contact information;
  • statistics on online content distribution and related topics;
  • lots more!

We principally need legal, communications, journalism, technical and/or library interns for this work. Interns would likely be working on other projects as well. Basic HTML skills and general computer competence necessary. Very helpful if you have your own laptop.

Interns will most likely need to be in the San Francisco Bay Area, and in our office at least a few days per week.

Timeframe: Needed immediately, and indefinitely. Minimum commitment: 2 days per week for at least two months.

Contact: Robin Gross, CAFE Project Manager,

Perl & CGI Scripting Assistants

We need several Unix-savvy volunteers, both long- and short-term, with excellent perl skills, and who will be committed to completing projects, small or large. Available projects will include:

  • fixing broken old scripts that have vexing bugs;
  • creating and installing infobots that send files in response to e-mails;
  • making a set of scripts to locate documents made with outdated templates and update them into our current "look and feel", in the EFF Web site;
  • hacking majordomo to do some more user- and admin-friendly things;
  • creation of a major, password-protected, Web-based "intranet" document editing system to interface EFF staff to our site & archive
  • finding and installing (or making) a cross-platform (Web-based) calendaring and contact management system (ideally compatible in some way with Palms and able to import comma- or tab-delimited data from Now Contact, Filemaker, etc.);
  • installing and modifying a verison of BugZilla for project tracking;
  • installation of a good search engine on our site that will search not just index abstracts of documents, but their text as well;
  • finding and/or creating a wordprocessor-to-HTML (and PDF/PS-to-HTML) converter that actually writes good code and which will preserve page numbers, line numbers and footnotes on legal documents (mostly Word Perfect, some MS Word, some PDF);
  • ...among many, many others that range from simple to very complex.
  • help us set up a ZIP+4-to-Congressional-District database, and interface this to an online activism system.

Some other possibilities, for someone who knows C++ or another compiled programming language:

  • Production of an open-source SSL tunnelling application (e.g. for use in securing FTP-enabled HTML editors between an OpenBSD server machine and a Mac or Windows user machine, without the user having to be Unix-competent); something like F-Secure;

We'd like to release the final version of each under the GPL (this allows you to fork the source and develop it commercially if you want, while allowing us to use and release for others to use the basic finished "product" in our committment to open source development and the public interest.)

These volunteers will ideally be high-end tech people from the commercial sector who have some spare time and would like to use their skills to help this organization be even more successful. If you are someone who's stock just vested and you're going to take some time out from the rat race, you're our [wo]man! Keep those scripting skills honed and do some social good at the same time! Offers from college students will also be considered, but please be certain that you can commit to a project from start to finish AND not harm your studies! :-)

Volunteers can be anywhere, but it is best if you are in the San Francisco Bay Area, and can come into our office from time to time.

Timeframe: Needed immediately, and for the foreseeable future. Minimum commitment: 2 days per week and dead set on completing the project(s) you've selected, a longer list of which will be available soon on request. (Our largest downfall with volunteer tech help is that it quietly fizzles out and projects grind to a halt, 9 times out of 10, thus the stress on completion commitment.)

Contact: Stanton McCandlish, Advocacy Director & Webmaster,

Web Archival & Research Assistant (LONG term!)

Our archive is in serious need of someone to:

  • scour our archives from top to bottom, fixing broken links, missing files, bad HTML, etc.;
  • search the Web regularly for relevant materials to add to the archives, to both flesh out this historical matter, and keep the current material up to date;
  • search the Web regularly for articles and other items to link in to our site in relevant places, everywhere;
  • write informative introductions to each archive topic and sub-topic;
  • write better abstracts for many files in the archives with poor or no descriptions at present;
  • research search engines and how they rank site, and find ways to make our site come up higher in relevant searches;
  • research corporate web site banner ads for "public serivce announcement" opportunities to get EFF free or cheap ads placed all over the web;
  • HTMLize documents;
  • dig up information like a Congressperson's or company exec's contact information on short notice for action alerts, and other urgent research as it arises;
  • other assistant webmaster tasks;

This volunteer MUST BE COMMITTED TO A LONG TERM, CONSISTENT EFFORT. Please do NOT apply for this position lightly. It will take a lot of work and a lot of time, and will not always be exciting, though it will certainly be informative. This WILL require a lot of HTML gruntwork, though much of it will also be fun, and it will all be important in one way or another.

You'd be working with me (Stanton, the webmaster), and Henry (the asst. webmaster) on a very regular basis. I warn ahead of time that I expect you to hit the ground running and be largely self-managing. You will also need to be committed to standard, correct HTML that works in all browsers, and to following templates and formats to the letter. I'm a stickler about these things. >;-)

Minimum requirements: * deep commitment to online civil liberties; * extensive knowledge of HTML; * at least basic (preferably advanced) understanding of Unix; * unflagging patience and attention to detail; * creative thinking; * generally reachable and available on short notice (no, I won't call you in the middle of the night); * a number of relevant references (preferrably system administrators and the like - you'll have a fair amount of write access to our server, so this is a major security concern); * at least basic (preferrably advanced) understanding of the technical, social and legal issues that EFF works on; * absolute commitment to doing this well and doing it for a long time.

Though we can't pay you, this volunteer position could eventually turn into a real job (no promises, though). At very least you will probably become part of the "EFF family", both internally and in the public eye. The responsibilities will be rather large, but so will the rewards (in many senses - reputation, great résumé points, unique experience on the bleeding edge of 21st century issues, being a co-webmaster of one of the most-linked-to sites on the Web, and the chance to play a major and vitally important support role for an organization doing much-needed public interest work.

Volunteer can be anywhere, but it is best if you are in the San Francisco Bay Area, and can come into our office from time to time.

Timeframe: Needed immediately, and for the foreseeable future. Minimum commitment: 1 day per week (preferably more), for at least 6 months. We want you to become an integral part of our team!

Contact: Stanton McCandlish, Advocacy Director & Webmaster,

Blue Ribbon Campaign Project Intern

EFF is seeking intern for our online free expression campaign. For more details on this campaign, see

The Electronic Frontier Foundation seeks an Online Free Expression Campaign intern to focus on issues related to Internet blocking technology and related public policy. This intern will research Internet blocking issues, prepare leaflets, reports, and media releases, and organize forums and protests.

Basic HTML skills and general computer competence necessary. Very helpful if you have your own laptop and/or home Internet access.

Interns will be in the San Francisco Bay Area, and in the EFF office at least two days per week. School credit may be available.

Timeframe Needed immediately, for summer and fall semesters. Minimum commitment 2 days per week for at least three months.

Please see above for general internship information.

Contact: Will Doherty, Online Activist / Media Relations,