Stories about Freedom of Speech from February, 2012
Cuba: Worry about Hunger Striker
Uncommon Sense hopes that political prisoner Ernesto Borges’ fate will not go the way of so many other hunger strikers, saying: “He needs you to learn his story and to spread it so that his life can be saved.”
Trinidad & Tobago: Battle with Media
Afra Raymond outlines what he believes is a “sinister pattern” towards the media in Trinidad & Tobago, since the People's Partnership has been in government. According to Raymond, who elaborated on his views in an accompanying webcast, “…given the boundless nature of the new technology, we are going to see...
Iran: A pro-animal blog was filtered
Sepehr Salimi writes another pro-animal and pro-environment blog got filtered in Iran.Dadkhahi Heyvanat az Ensanha (animals ask people for justice) used to write about pets.
Russia: An Overview of the Pre-Election Anglophone Blogging
Below is a quick overview of what some of the Anglophone Russia bloggers have been writing during the busy pre-election month of February.
Cuba, USA: Blogger Perspectives on the Embargo's 50th Anniversary (Part 1)
The United States' economic embargo against Cuba has been in existence for 50 years. To mark the occasion, Global Voices interviews two bloggers about the blockade and what it has (or hasn't) accomplished. This is Part 1, in which Cuban diaspora blogger Alberto de la Cruz shares his views.
Video Highlights: Defending Human Rights
A selection of Global Voices' recent and interesting stories on video advocacy including indigenous rights and recent news from Latin America, East Asia, Western Europe and Sub Saharan Africa selected by Juliana Rincón Parra.
Cuba: Dialogue with the Opposition?
“It might be paranoia. In totalitarian states, suspicion and the absurd become habit. But it isn’t insane to think that to give the dissidents a space if circumstances force their hand, could become a part of the island’s mandarin’s calculus”: Iván's File Cabinet puts forward a compelling theory.
Pakistan: Fighting the Great Firewall
The recent blow to the internet freedom in Pakistan has been the announcement of a request for proposal (RFP) for national “URL filtering and blocking system” by the ICT R&D Fund under the Ministry of Information Technology (MoIT). The $10 million system is required to be able to ”handle a block list of up to 50 million URLs".
Syria: Homage to American Journalist Marie Colvin Killed in Homs
Marie Colvin and Rémi Olchik were killed last week, when the makeshift media centre they were at in Baba Amr, in Homs, Syria, was attacked by the Syrian regime. Netizens from around the world pay homage to their courage.
Bahrain: #Hungry4BH Trends Worldwide
Bahraini netizens, backed by the international community, helped raise the voices of detained political activists on hunger strike, by making their plight a trending topic on Twitter. Mona Kareem reports on the efforts of activists online and on the ground in Bahrain.
Cuba: Working for “The Enemy”?
Havana Times reports that “the leading Cuban government website…unleashed a front page attack on blogger Yoani Sanchez…with an article accusing her of working for the enemy (USA) for pay”; Sanchez herself sees a news report “in which the blogger Miriam Celaya and other acquaintances appear, surrounded with epithets such as...
Cuba: More Sunday Detentions
Uncommon Sense blogs about yet another Sunday of repression as members of Las Damas de Blanco were again detained by authorities.
Latvia: Flagging for Free Speech
Juris Kaža of Free Speech Emergency in Latvia reports that Latvian security police has closed an investigation into an Internet call to desecrate the Latvian flag, which is illegal in the country. The case was closed as there was no evidence of any victim of flag burning.
Portugal: Web Users Debate Portuguese Private Copying Bill
Currently being debated in the Portuguese Parliament is a new bill (PL118) which proposes a tax on any equipment or software capable of recording, copying or storing analogue or digital content, in the name of author's rights. The online community has wasted no time in wading in on the debate, with the hashtag #PL118 duly trending on Twitter.
Russia: The “Big White Circle” Protest in Moscow
On Sunday, Feb. 26, thousands of people gathered in central Moscow for the Big White Circle protest, forming a human chain along most of the length of the Russian capital's 15.6-kilometer/9.7-mile Garden Ring, protesting against corruption and demanding a fair presidential election, which is to take place in one week, on March 4.
Tunisia: Police Use Tear Gas and Batons to Disperse Labor Union Protest
Police used tear gas and batons to disperse protesters showing support to the Tunisian General Union for Labour (known by its French acronym UGTT), in the capital Tunis, yesterday (February 25).
Pakistan: The Government Tender To Purchase Filtering Tools
Apparently the Pakistani government has invited tender to private and semi-private companies to purchase a tool to block thousands of urls. Awab Alvi and Faisal Kapadia hosts a video podcast at SpeakForChange to discuss why the government is doing this.
Iran: Another blogger was arrested
Nama Jafari,blogger and journalist was arrested. He was editor of a cultural site. He also wrote a book called “a gathering in solitary confinement”.
Russia: Bloggers’ Photo Reports and Reflections on Pro-Putin Rally in Moscow
On Thursday, February 23, ten days before the March 4 presidential election, the Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin addressed thousands of people at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow. A number of Moscow-based bloggers attended the event, too. Below is a selection of their photo reports and observations, along with some of the remarks from their audiences.
Cuba: Prisoners’ Rights
Uncommon Sense republishes a statement by Amnesty International about “former prisoner of conscience Jose Daniel Ferrer Garcia [whose] whereabouts are unknown following his alleged arrest in central Havana, Cuba, on 21 February”; Pedazos de la Isla, meanwhile, reports that “the political prisoner on hunger strike, Ernesto Borges, was taken from...
Puerto Rico: Blogosphere Denounces Proposed Cybergag
The Puerto Rican blogosphere reacted to a measure undertaken by the mayor of the city of Mayagüez, José Guillermo Rodríguez, that would have been used to investigate and prosecute people who criticize his administration on social networks. Even though the Mayor has since decided not to enforce the resolution, he warned that more regulations will come soon.