DearMEP: Free Software infrastructure for Online Campaigning in the EU
08-17, 23:10–23:30 (Europe/Berlin), Digitalcourage
Language: English

How to hack the European Parliament by giving voters a voice in the decisions on the floor.

Contacting your representative in Parliament is not as easy as it should be. What are their email addresses, phone numbers, social network profiles? Are they in Brussels or in Strasbourg right now? How much will it cost to call someone in France anyway? What should you even say to them? And does it even make sense to talk to that particular person, or are they so fundamentally opposed to your request that it would be a waste of time?

The tool we are developing aims to bring citizens closer to their elected representatives. It empowers users to contact Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) efficiently and with a low entry barrier. The software takes the burden away from users to understand the EU and which MEPs are best to contact on a particular issue. It also knows how to contact them, and even allows the user to call them free of charge.

DearMEP is being developed as a white label solution that can be applied to any EU level decision that has to be voted upon in the plenary of the European Parliament. NGOs that campaign around an EU decision can use the software to mobilize the public efficiently with the goal to influence particular plenary votes.

Currently, the DearMEP software is tailored to address the whole European Parliament and to be used by citizens from all EU countries to contact MEPs from their countries. In this presentation, we would like to show you the current development state of this tool. We are planning to use DearMEP in the ongoing campaign against the chat control proposal. After that legislative file has concluded, we will release the software under the AGPL free software licence. During the CCCamp we will provide access to the current beta.

We would love to hear your feedback. Drop us an email at

Content Notes

We are going to mention that the EU’s Regulation to Prevent and Combat Child Sexual Abuse (CSAR) is the main focus of our campaign. However, we will be talking about the tool and EU politics in general, not sexual abuse.

Thomas Lohninger is Executive Director of the Austrian digital rights NGO and VP of EDRi.

This speaker also appears in:

scy is a freelance software engineer, amateur hardware tinkerer, activist, and part of the Chaos family since around 2005.