Stories about Feature from January, 2009
North Africa: are political websites more likely to get hacked?
Political opposition websites in North African countries, particularly in Tunisia, Libya and Mauritania, are becoming a primary target of hackers. This new phenomenon of defacing opposition and dissident websites emerged first in Tunisia, where at least 14 websites and blogs were targeted between 2007 and 2008, and seems to be spreading across the region as a result of the attempt to muzzle free speech both online and offline.
More than 1500 websites closed down in China anti-Smut
Since the anti-Smut campaign began in Jan 5, in less than a month, the China government has already closed down more than 1500 websites. Xiao Qiang, director of the China Digital Times, and Jack Qui, Assistant Professor of Journalism and Communication Department in the Chinese University of Hong Kong both...
LGBT content unreasonably filtered away in Hong Kong
A LGBT concern group, leslovestudy, conduced a research in Hong Kong [Chinese pdf] in November, 2008 on 5 major commercial and public filters in Hong Kong. The NGO found out that a large amount of LGBT content, including community, health and academic websites, has been widely filtered away in Hong...
Morocco blocks four opposition websites
Four websites of the Jama’a Al Adl wa Al Ihsan (Justice and Spirituality), Morocco’s largest Islamic movement (officially illegal), have been blocked in Morocco this week and redirected to the following blockpage:
Bahrain: Scores of Websites Blocked
Scores of websites have been blocked in Bahrain, following a new crackdown by the Ministry of Information. The latest sweep makes sites ranging from Google Translate to those of social, religious, human rights and political groups inaccessible to people in Bahrain.
Harry Nicolaides, Thailand's latest political prisoner
The Harry Nicolaides case raises vital issues, procedurally, legally and in Thai society. Was Harry arrested because he wrote in English and therefore his self-published expat bargirl novel of 50 paid-for vanity copies of which seven (we repeat, seven) copies were actually sold, represented a clear and present danger to the Thai monarchy from the world community?
Debate over indecency filtering in Hong Kong
Hong Kong government is completing its first round of consultation on the Control of Obscene and Indecent Article Ordinance (COIAO) at the end of January, 2009. The most debatable section is on the control over online new media as the existing practice of indecent and obscene censorship is very arbitrary...
Syria blocks personal blog of Human rights activist
Syrian authorities have blocked access to the personal blog of the 26-year-old Syrian Human rights activist and blogger Mohammad Al-Abdallah who is blogging at Raye7wmishRaj3 (I’m Leaving and I’m Not Coming Back). Syrian Netizens can access the blocked blog via HTTPS or simply by visiting the mirror blog at http://rwmr.wordpress.com/.
Arrest of Christian Convert blogger in Saudi Arabia
According to the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHR), Saudi authorities have arrested the 28-year-old blogger Hamoud Bin Saleh and blocked his blog Masihi Saudi (A Saudi Christian). The ANHR adds further that blogger Hamoud Bin Saleh was arrested “due to his opinions and announcement at his blog that...
China's Anti-Smut Campaign and Political Censorship
There is a patriotic saying in Chinese: you can kill one, thousands of us will be reborn (to fight against you). The new round of internet crack down has begun in China at the beginning of 2009 and bullog.cn, one of the most influential blog hosting platform in China for more than a hundred outspoken bloggers and citizen reporters, was forced to shut down on 9 of Jan. Now, they are rebuilding their blogs in various platforms, scattered but aggregated through various Feed readers and new websites.
Lessons on libel: South African blogger sued for defamation
After South African Donn Edwards wrote in his blog about the dubious marketing tactics of a holiday rental company called Quality Vacation Club, he was sued for defamation. This was interpreted as an attack on all bloggers in South Africa so a campaign to support him was launched, a Facebook group and dozens of bloggers wrote about it. Here are a few lessons on libel for bloggers.
Pakistan Censors Pictures of Governor – Harmful for the Integrity of Pakistan
The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA), the internet monitoring body in Pakistan has issued directives to all its ISP providers to block a list of six webpages on the grounds that they were “harmful for the integrity of the country.”