Mozilla Festival — A lifetime experience

Sethu Sathyan
3 min readNov 4, 2018


About MozFest

Mozilla Festival ( MozFest ) brings together coders, journalists, teachers, hackers — anyone and everyone working towards a healthier internet. This year’s MozFest was held in London at Ravensbourne University from 26th October to 28th October with the theme of “Your Data & You”.

Each year Mozilla invites proposals for sessions under different spaces from all around the world and openly curate it under Mozfest Program 2018 repository in Github.

This year Stanly Johnson, Kuruvilla George, Syam and I submitted a proposal under the Decentralisation space. And our session on the topic “Decentralised Publishing” got selected under the Decentralisation space.

Unfortunately, Mozilla was not able to fund our travel and lodging expenses this time and we didn't want to miss this opportunity. So we started searching for travel grants.

Linux Foundation Community Travel Fund

While searching for different travel grant options I discovered the Linux Foundation’s Community Travel Fund, which provides sponsorship for open source technology experts to attend events that they would otherwise be unable to attend due to a lack of funding.

The application form was pretty straightforward which asked for basic contact information, event info, project and travel info and estimate for airfare and hotel. You will also need to upload an estimate document for hotel and airfare.

I filled the application form with the necessary details including links to our proposed session and uploaded the estimate for travel. After 15 days, I received an email from Linux Foundation saying “ You have been approved for sponsorship for MozFest London”, and I was on cloud9!

Mozilla Festival Weekend

MozFest picture with the Fox

The first day of Mozilla Festival was for session facilitators and we had facilitator coaching sessions on how to present our talk, designing the space and interacting with the participants. This was an amazing experience as we got to meet other the facilitators, understand about their session plans, seek feedback for our session plan etc.

Stanly Johnson and I delivered our session on the second day of MozFest. The session explained concepts of Decentralised web and how journalists and whistleblowers can securely and safely exchange immutable reports & content to the audience using blockchain.

Our session on Decentralised Publishing

The goal of our session was to educate people about the nuances of decentralised technologies, their potential, and benefits of an open-ledger news dissemination platform. The larger goal was to help participants to appreciate decentralisation as a philosophy and the concept of trust over the internet to build decentralised applications on their own or contribute to existing projects.

Meeting Sir Tim Berners Lee

MozFest also featured talks by eminent speakers including Sir Tim Berners Lee, the inventor of the World Wide Web (WWW) and Mark Surman, Executive Director -Mozilla Foundation.

Sir Tim Berners Lee talked about his latest work on decentralisation space. He is founder and CTO of the newly launched company Inrupt, that’s helping to fuel the success of Solid, the technically potent open-source platform built to decentralise web.

With Sir Tim Berners Lee

We were also given an opportunity to interact with Tim Berners Lee during the summit and learn from him, which was one of the key takeaways from the MozFest.

Attending, presenting our session at the Mozilla Festival and interacting with leaders and activists in tech was an amazing experience. I am really thankful to everyone who attended our session, space wranglers, Mozilla Festival team and Linux Foundation for this opportunity.