November, 2015

Stories from November, 2015

With Messaging Apps Still Banned, Bangladeshis Turn to Tor (and Twitter)

It is not clear whether the government has blocked the Facebook portal or banned the use of Facebook altogether.

Five Top Tweets: Iranians Ridicule Censorship on the ‘Filternet’

Iranian Internet users hurled sarcasm, profanity and snark at the country's "filternet" after recent blocking of the Telegram messaging app.

Netizen Report: Bangladesh Bans Facebook and Chat Apps on ‘Security Grounds’

Bangladesh accidentally shuts down the Internet, hip-hop gets the boot on Chinese streaming sites, and Twitter faces new data dilemmas in Russia.

Global Voices Community: We Stand With Hisham

As long-time friend and community member Hisham Almiraat faces trial in Morocco this week, the Global Voices community pays tribute to a man of unquestionable character, talent and amazing kindness.

Global Voices Community Stands With Moroccan Free Expression Advocates

The Global Voices community demands justice for seven free expression advocates who are facing trial in Morocco on charges of “threatening the internal security of the State.”

When China Briefly Unblocked Facebook, Trolls Rushed In

"I wish this precious experience can help our 'new friends' see a full picture of Taiwan's democracy, freedom and diversity. Welcome, all of you, to the world of Facebook!"

Russian Lawmaker Suggests Banning Telegram Messenger ‘Because It's Used by ISIS’

Should Telegram be banned because it's used by extremist organizations such as ISIS? One Russian lawmaker believes it should, but plenty of others in Russia disagree.

Facebook Sees Sharp Spike in Hong Kong Government's Requests for User Data

"...it is quite obvious that the public have no way to know about the truth at the moment. We don’t know whether the reasons provided by the government are justified..."

Global Voices’ Hisham Almiraat Faces Trial in Morocco

Hisham Almiraat, a long-time author and community leader at Global Voices will face trial in Morocco this week on charges of "threatening the internal security of the State."

Russia Changes Its Mind, Asks Twitter to Store Russian User Data Locally

Previously, Roscomnadzor had said Twitter was exempt from the norms of the data localization law as the kind of user data Twitter collects did not qualify as “personal information."

#FreeBassel: Death Sentence Rumored for Syrian Web Developer

Rumors are circulating that imprisoned Syrian-Palestinian software engineer Bassel Khartabil, also known as Bassel Safadi, has been secretly sentenced to death by the Syrian government.

Netizen Report: UN Authorities Pluck Protesters from Global Internet Conference in Brazil

The UN fails to walk the walk on free expression, Tanzanians face prosecution over WhatsApp messages, and the UK rolls out a new surveillance bill that is 'worse than scary'.

Four Tanzanians Charged For Publishing Political Information On WhatsApp

Four other Tanzanians have been arrested and charged for political comments they made using the messaging service WhatsApp.

Russia's Internet Watchdog May Soon Get More Extrajudicial Website Blocking Powers

Roscomnadzor can already make websites unavailable for Russian users without a court order, but they remain available to users outside Russia—something the new, broader mandate could end.

In Venezuela, 140 Characters Can Land You in Jail

It took one or two tweets to seven people, with no criminal record and active political participation, ended up in jail in Venezuela. Here are their stories.

On Net Freedom Report in Africa, The Gambia Scores Poorly

The Gambia, the tiny West African state, is the second worst when it comes to internet freedom in Sub-Saharan Africa.

When Were You Sexually Harassed for the First Time? Brazilian Women React to Online Violence

Social networks are increasingly filled with hate speech. This alarming phenomenon, however, is being countered by creative, irreverent, and organized women's groups online.

Hungarian Woman Fined for Facebook Post About State Spending

The Hungarian Civil Liberties Union has started a crowdsourcing campaign to support Maria Somogyi as part of its work to end the abuse of libel laws.

Why Did the Giant Ears Cross the Road? To Protest State Surveillance in Macedonia

The wiretap "bombshells" released by opposition party leaders almost one year ago revealed that the communications of more than 20,000 individuals in Macedonia had been secretly recorded.

Digital Citizen 3.9

Digital Citizen is a biweekly review of news, policy, and research on human rights and technology in the Arab World.

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