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· January, 2012

Stories about Freedom of Speech from January, 2012

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Spanish-Speaking Twittersphere Fumes Over Announcement

  31 January 2012

Twitter's announcement that it will restrict certain user content according to the laws of individual countries immediately caused a negative reaction in the Spanish-speaking Twittersphere. Twitter users widely employed the hashtags #CensuramestaTwitter and #TwitterCensored to display their anger with the social networking site.

Cuba: Human Rights Double Standard

  31 January 2012

Lilianne Ruíz, blogging at Translating Cuba, compares a television spot “that shows a series of watercolors of butterflies from one of the five officials of the Interior Ministry imprisoned in the United States…with the stories that are told of Cuban jails, especially for political prisoners who, ever since their detention,...

Macedonia: “Conformism, Hypocrisy and Opportunism”

  30 January 2012

Human rights activist, journalist and artist Xhabir M. Deralla candidly expressed his view on the role of the civic sector in contemporary Macedonia: “The choir of indolent subjects stands mute. As media get quieter, the stench of the decay prevails. The civil society forgets that media are civil society, too....

Cuba: Pope's Visit & Human Rights

  30 January 2012

In the wake of more repression against Las Damas de Blanco, Uncommon Sense thinks “that the pope should postpone his visit until human rights conditions improve in Cuba.”

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UK: #TwitterKurds Organize First Social Media Gathering in London

  29 January 2012

A group of Kurdish Internet activists that have been organizing around the #TwitterKurds hashtag on Twitter have come together for the first Kurdish Social Media Gathering earlier this month in London. The event was live streamed and joined in via Skype and YouTube by those who could not be there physically, although there were participants who had traveled from as far as Australia to participate.

Ethiopia: Standing With Ethiopia's Tenacious Blogger

  28 January 2012

Standing with Ethiopia's jailed blogger: “It would be hard to find a better symbol of media repression in Africa than Eskinder Nega. The veteran Ethiopian journalist and dissident blogger has been detained at least seven times by Prime Minister Meles Zenawi's government over the past two decades, and was put...

Cuba: The Cardinal Rule

  27 January 2012

In the context of the country's upcoming papal visit, Angel Santiesteban writes: “What we Cubans have to achieve won’t come from anyone’s visit, nor from the ‘peace concert’, although it had good intentions, nor from the ‘U.S. blockade.’ It will come the day we demand what belongs to us by...

Brazil: A View from Aboard on Pinheirinho Eviction

  27 January 2012

Jimmy Greer, an activist and sustainability consultant for I-See Global based in London, writes about “the brutal eviction” of Pinheirinho, in Brazil as “another example of a skewed approach to governing that is at odds with an active, connected and changing society that demands more from its elected officials.”

Colombia: First Reactions to #TwitterCensorship

  27 January 2012

Colombian journalist Héctor Abad (@hectorabadf) [es] is one of many Twitter users who are alarmed [es] by Twitter's decision to implement “a sort of geolocated censorship”, as Periodismo Ciudadano explains [es]. On social networks in Colombia and other Spanish-speaking countries users are quoting and sharing related blog posts by Juan...

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China: Not Worried About Twitter's Decision to Self-Censor

  27 January 2012

Twitter announced this week that, with an eye on global profits, it has decided to begin censoring content prohibited in the various markets in which the company has users. Although Twitter remains blocked in China, the site's Chinese-language users have responded to the news.

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Portugal: State Radio Silenced after Angola Opinion Piece

  27 January 2012

A week after the broadcast of an opinion piece by the journalist Pedro Rosa Mendes on public radio, the end of the program was announced. The piece criticized the coverage of an event with several politicians and business men from Portugal and Angola. Bloggers immediately reacted to the "axing of freedom of expression".

Cuba: Internet as a Public Good

  26 January 2012

“In addition to triggering the greatest civic hell-raising in Internet history…the SOPA/PIPA laws have touched a nerve in Cuba’s digital community”: half-wired explains.

Guyana: Protest at University

  26 January 2012

Bloggers report on protests against the firing of journalist and lecturer Freddie Kissoon from the national university, here and here.

Cuba, Barbados: Power of the Hunger Strike

  25 January 2012

Uncommon Sense notes that Cuban dissident Jorge Cervantes has gone on a hunger strike after being arrested for putting up posters protesting the recent death of hunger striker and prisoner of conscience Wilman Villar Mendoza. Barbados Free Press, meanwhile, republishes a letter from a Cuban prisoner who has served his...

Puerto Rico: Vigilance over SOPA & PIPA

  25 January 2012

Dondequiera says of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA): “Mark my word, this issue is not dead. More like the living dead, a zombie issue, if you like. Many companies…believe that the only way to kill the intellectual property rights legislation is to...

Guyana: Kissoon Firing as “Rodney Redux”

  25 January 2012

“The government and its sycophantic outliers may argue from now until the cows come home that the days of Burnham are over, but this is essentially Walter Rodney redux…”: The Minority Report adds its voice to the outcry over the firing of Freddie Kissoon from the University of Guyana.

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