Dave Maass

Dave Maass

Reynolds Scholar in Residence


Dave Maass is a Reynolds Scholar in Residence through a partnership with the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF).

Founded in 1990, EFF champions user privacy, free expression and innovation through impact litigation, policy analysis, grassroots activism and technology development. As senior investigative researcher in EFF's Threat Lab, Maass examines law enforcement technology and the accountability mechanisms for countering misuse.

Maass leads deep-dive investigations and large-scale public records campaigns for EFF’s Street-Level Surveillance project, with an emphasis on automated license plate readers, cell-site simulators, biometric recognition and police databases. He compiles The Foilies, EFF's annual tongue-in-cheek awards for outrageous responses to Freedom of Information Act requests, which runs in newspapers around the country during Sunshine Week. He also researches virtual reality as part of the team that developed Spot the Surveillance, EFF’s first VR project.

Before joining EFF, Maass wrote for alt-weeklies across the Southwest, reporting on everything from Texas death row to San Diego Comic-Con. On the side, Maass contributes to publications such as Motherboard, Rolling Stone, San Diego CityBeat, and SyFyWire.

His investigative reporting on incarceration in San Diego County was honored with the Youth Law Center's Loren Warboys Unsung Hero Award and the National Association for Civilian Oversight of Law Enforcement's Contribution to Oversight Award. In 2017, Dave was a co-recipient of the First Amendment Coalition's Free Speech and Open Government Award. He also served on the San Francisco Sunshine Ordinance Task Force from 2016-2018.

Maass holds a master's degree in social anthropology from the University of Manchester, where he studied documentary film at the Granada Centre for Visual Anthropology. He completed his undergraduate degree in communications at Temple University's Tokyo campus.


  • Master's degree in Social Anthropology, University of Manchester
  • Bachelor's degree in Communications, Temple University