Stories about Free Expression from February, 2016
Saudi Arabia Sentences Twitter User to 10 Years in Prison and 2,000 Lashes for Apostasy
Saudi Arabia has sentenced a Twitter user to 10 years in prison in addition to 2,000 lashes for publishing 600 tweets "which spread atheism" online.
The Malaysian Insider News Website Blocked by Authorities for Posting ‘Unverified’ Report on Government Corruption
"Such unilateral action could also be construed as an attempt to intimidate the media against running critical news reports."
Anti-Extremism Police in Yakutia, Russia, Say They Have Ways of Finding You on WhatsApp
WhatsApp messenger is hugely popular in Yakutia—and the anti-extremist police force are on it.
Netizen Report: Clown Meme Rocks Malaysia, Mocks Prime Minister
Clown memes mocking Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak are spreading after Malaysian police threatened graphic artist Fahmi Reza for uploading an image of Razak as a clown.
Ukrainian Court Equates Social Network Profile With Mainstream Media
The social media pages containing "calls to overthrow authorities" were determined by the court to be "mass media" because they were public and accessible to an unlimited number of people.
Egyptian Writer Ahmed Naji Sentenced to Two Years in Prison for his “Sexually Explicit” Novel
A Cairo appeals court sentenced Egyptian novelist and journalist Ahmed Naji for two years in prison for publishing a chapter containing “sexually explicit” scenes from his novel The Guide of Using Life in a magazine. Naji, accused of violating public decency, was acquitted in the first trial in December, which...
Hard Labor for Woman Who Reposted Online Criticism of Russia's Actions in Ukraine
A Russian court found Vologzheninova guilty of "discrediting the political order" and of "inciting enmity" by reposting or liking online material critical of Russia’s actions in Crimea and in Donbas.
A Pakistani Artist Remembers Sabeen Mahmud and her Valentine's Day Campaign
According to one of activist Sabeen Mahmud's killers, her '"un-Islamic" Valentine's Day rally was "the sin she eventually paid for."
Kremlin Censor Finally Brings Down the Hammer on the RuNet’s Pluckiest Freedom Advocates
Government censors have blocked the website of Russian digital rights organization RosKomSvoboda for a page with instructions on how to circumvent online censorship and access blocked websites.
Netizen Report: From Egypt to Kenya to Venezuela, Online Political Speech Feels Riskier Than Ever
Social media activists face legal threats in Africa and Latin America, Malaysia blocks Medium over corruption coverage, and Saudi pulls back death sentence for Palestinian artist Ashraf Fayadh.
Saudi Arabia Reduces Ashraf Fayadh's Death Sentence to Eight Years in Prison and 800 Lashes
Saudi Arabia overturned the death sentence of Palestinian poet Ashraf Fayadh, accused of apostasy and other blasphemy-related offenses which he denies, to eight years imprisonment and 800 lashes.
Egyptians Call for the Release of Political Prisoners on the Fifth Anniversary of the Jan 25 Revolution
Some 41,000 political prisoners remain in jail in Egypt on the fifth anniversary of the Egyptian revolution. Mira G looks at how they are being remembered.
New Ukrainian Draft Bill Seeks Extrajudicial Blocking for Websites Violating Copyright
A new bill in the Ukrainian parliament wants to replace the common pre-court notice and takedown procedure for copyright violations online with a faster blocking mechanism bypassing the courts.