To help solve the issue we tried to take a rigorous approach to modeling the trigger mechanism and the potential events that created false alerts. We took the approach that if we could see the problem and visualise its moving parts, then we could understand it and make better decisions. To complete the picture, we used a simple spreadsheet with a custom function to take a “data-driven” approach to changing the parameters. In a way, it’s a simple but accurate model of several ways that the panic button triggering mechanism works, which allows to explore different options and understand their impact on known “test cases”.Read more
We think Panic Button is a tool that can be useful in countries like Sudan where mass arrests and detention of human rights defenders are common and where often families of the victims struggle to know the whereabouts of their loved one.
The Story behind Panic Button
Amnesty developed Panic Button with the aim of turning an activist’s mobile phone into a secret alarm that can help them to get help fast in an emergency. The app encourages peer-to-peer security planning and response.
Panic Button was the product of an open design process that we kicked off with OpenIDEO in early 2012. Since its inception, dozens of activists, volunteer designers, programmers and security experts have helped to develop the concept helping Amnesty to build the first version of the app.
The organisations supporting Panic Button
Panic Button also belongs to a wider community of advisors and friends. Special thanks go to the network of human rights activists from more than ten countries who have worked with us over the months to collaboratively design the app and have given many hours feeding back on the usability and functionality of the app.
A huge thanks is also owed to the many programmers and designers who have donated their time and skills to develop the app over the past two years. We are especially grateful to the OpenIDEO community for kick-starting the project and to ThoughtWorks who generously helped to develop the first working prototype of the app.