Stories from July, 2012
Twenty one pupils at a secondary school in rural western Zambia have been expelled over vile messages against their teachers on Facebook. Meanwhile, ruling party boss wants Zambian citizen news website shut.
Discussions have been held over the past year in the National Congress to draw up a computer crime bill. The bill has raised many questions, among them the fact that it constitutes a probable threat to privacy and freedom of expression on the internet.
Global Voices seeks an Advocacy Director to run its online freedom of expression initiatives. Global Voices Advocacy seeks to build a global anti-censorship network of citizen media and online activists throughout the developing world that is dedicated to protecting freedom of expression and free access to information online. The goal...
In this guest post from the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the recent sentencing of Ethiopian blogger Eskinder Nega is viewed in the context of Ethiopia's participation in the war on terrorism.
Domain names in Chile have become a battlefield over the right to freedom of expression. In this new video from the campaign “Don’t Fear the Internet”, NGO 'Derechos Digitales' highlights two testimonies: elmercuriomiente.cl and estafadoscorfo.cl. Both are examples of how disputes over domain names seek to silence critical speech.
On July 18, 2012, both the Senate and House of Representatives in Mexico passed resolutions calling for the country's new President, Enrique Peña Nieto, to nullify Mexico's signature on the ACTA treaty. Mexico's Ambassador to Japan, Claude Heller, signed the treaty a week prior, despite strong rejections of its terms by Mexico's Senate and the country's telecommunications commission.
Costa Rica just passed Law 9048, which includes reforms to the country’s Criminal Code to create new cybercrime offenses, including rules against illegal access and interception of communications. Journalists and internet freedom activists are trying to modify the most controversial part of the law which criminalizes the publication of State secrets, the use of any form of e-impersonification and the spread of false news.
A local newspaper, AM730 [zh] found out that the Hong Kong government free wifi service is filtering away a number of politically sensitive websites. Even though most of the websites have been re-opened upon receiving netizens’ complaint, netizens and human right groups are concerned about the lack of monitor over...
This post was written by Sam Gregory, Program Director at WITNESS and originally appeared on the WITNESS Video For Change blog, July 18, 2012. Yesterday, YouTube announced a new tool within their upload editor that enables people to blur the faces within the video, and then publish a version with...
We begin this week’s Netizen Report with a battle between South Korea’s net neutrality advocates and telecommunications companies, who are at odds after the Korean Communications Commission allowed three domestic mobile carriers to block access or add surcharges for mobile voice over Internet protocol (VOIP) services. Opponents to this latest move include several civil society groups and Google. From there we move on to net neutrality debates in the United States and Brazil, before embarking on our global tour of the ongoing struggle over freedom and control of the Internet.
The Mexican government signed its adhesion to ACTA (Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement) on Wednesday, July 11th. 2012 in Japan while it was the middle of the night in Mexico. Netizens showed their outrage complaining that the federal government acted against the will of the people and of the Senate.
Building on the momentum of the UN's recent decision to designate online freedom of expression a human right, the NGO “Derechos Digitales” (“Digital Rights”) recently launched the online campaign “No temas a Internet” [es] ("Don’t fear the Internet"), to alert people about the fundamental importance of online freedom of expression.
The number of citizen journalists and bloggers arrested in Syria rises daily. A new campaign--for blogger Hussein Ghrer--seeks to raise awareness of the blogger's plight.
Recently, a number of groups came together to create a Declaration of Internet Freedom. To date, the Declaration has been signed by more than 1300 organizations and companies and continues to grow.
Authorities in Tajikistan plan to "track down and identify" individuals who publish materials and leave comments deemed insulting to the country's leadership. Netizens respond with a flurry of angry comments.
Hong Kong: Inconsistent categorization of Indecent and Obscene Articles Leads to Discrimination and Self-censorship
The Hong Kong government is having its second round of consultation in the review of the Control of Obscene and Indecent Articles Ordinance and the deadline for opinion submission is July 15, 2012. In a press conference [zh] on July 12, 2012, representatives from 15 local NGOs pointed out that...
On July 13 2012, a group of police officers raided a Hong Kong activist, Yang Yang's (screen name) home and took away his computer, server and cell phone. According to the police, he was under the allegation of Denial of Service (DOS) attack against two government websites earlier last month....
During the past five months, our small german NGO Digitale Gesellschaft e.V. has been actively campaigning against ACTA. Our main goal has been to create a broad coalition of organisations and people protesting against ACTA for different arguments, to communicate the criticism against ACTA in a comprehensive way as well...
This week we focus in on Russia, where the government has proposed a draft bill that would censor the Internet in ways similar to China's Great Firewall. Russia's Wikipedia went dark on Tuesday in protest, coinciding with a debate on the bill in the Russian Parliament. From there, we look at net activism issues in Syria, Malaysia, Iran and beyond.
Western technology has played a key role in providing the Syrian regime with tools to track and repress citizens for years. The latest Wikileaks files on Syria, which include more than two million emails from political figures and companies, reveal that the involvement of Western companies in the crackdown against Syrian citizens has continued despite sanctions and international pressure.