Manuel Sanchez-Palacios began as a grassroots activist in early 2016 when he joined the local UCSB radio station as an engineer and programmer who hosted environmental affairs and music shows. After learning about surveillance from Shahid Buttar, a lawyer and student outreach advocate who came to speak in one of his Film and Media classes, Manuel continued to advocate anti-surveillance and co-founded the #smile campaign with Michelle Chang and Jason Moon in order to spread awareness on the topic.
Michelle Chang is a grassroots activist and vocal critic of the disturbingly invasive use of surveillance strategies currently employed by the NSA and other government agencies. She maintains an online presence through her opinion blogging and Twitter. Chang comes from a educational background, originally working as a professor at UCSB in Film & Media Studies.
Jason Moon is a grassroots activist of various social issues with privacy and surveillance bringing out his most critical opinions. Moon received his education from Harvard University while receiving four different degrees simultaneously. His activity on multiple platforms of social media has enabled him to obtain hundreds and thousands of followers.