A 30 year broadcast journalism and film veteran, Ellen Seidler began her career in journalism at ABC News in New York as an assignment editor, and later joined KRON-TV in San Francisco as a photojournalist and editor. She has also been a lecturer in Digital Media at UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism and taught workshops for the Knight Digital Media Center at Berkeley. For the past 22 years, until 2017, Ellen was a tenured professor, teaching Fine & Media Arts at Contra Costa College in San Pablo, California.
Over the past two decades, she has also produced/directed/ and worked as a cinematographer on a variety of independent film and documentary projects. Her directing credits include the award-winning documentary “Fighting for Our Lives-Facing AIDS in San Francisco” and the indie feature “And Then Came Lola” which screened in LGBT film festivals throughout the world.
Following the release of “And Then Came Lola” in 2010 Seidler began to speak out on the issue of online piracy’s link to profits (via advertising) and created a blog www.popuppirates.com documenting online piracy’s link to profit (via advertising revenue) and its negative impact on content creators. She has been credited with bringing the issue of ad-sponsored piracy to the fore.
The idea of targeting websites financially goes back as far as there has been money changing hands on the Internet. However, the more recent history of it began when director Ellen Seidler launched the site PopUpPirates.com in 2010 (previous coverage), where she began to highlight many of the companies whose ads ran next to pirate downloads of her content.
Seidler continues to blog at www.voxindindie.org exploring issues surrounding piracy, online copyright and content creation.
Seidler is a member of the Advisory Board for the Digital Citizens Alliance and given presentations on piracy and copyright issues at Canadian Music Week, Stanford, UC Davis Law schools and George Mason’s (CPIP) Center for the Protection of Intellectual Property. In 2011 she was a speaker at Canadian Music Week’s Global Forum and her ongoing anti-piracy efforts have been covered by a variety of news outlets including NPR, Fortune Magazine, and Backstage.
Seidler and her production partner Megan Siler continue their Fast Girl Films collaboration and are developing a new episodic series and feature film.