Stories about Freedom of Speech from April, 2023
The consequences of online discrimination and authoritarianism for minorities
In most countries, three-quarters or more of the targets of online hate speech are members of minority groups, with women being disproportionately targeted.
Pakistan's war on journalism: Abduction and arrest of prominent journalists
Journalists in Pakistan continue to face harassment, arrest, and abduction for their reporting on sensitive issues. In recent years, several prominent journalists and media workers have been targeted and killed.
Human trafficking, forced labor and exploitation of migrants in Russia
Russian authorities trafficked people for illegal actions that they were forced to commit while being trafficked, such as prostitution, illegal presence in the country or drug trafficking. Many are deported.
Underscoring the challenges of promoting digital rights in Southeast Asia
"…information disorders have been weaponized for political gain, while oppressive governments have tried to control the internet, particularly through social media, and crackdown on dissidents using digital surveillance as tactic."
‘The internet is full of good intentions’: an interview with Ethan Zuckerman, part two
"You have to look at the examples of people who are trying to create interesting, new ways of building social media. [...]grounded in real, existing communities in the world."
Tunisia’s dependence on its Algerian brother: the reign of the counter-revolution axis
Both Algeria and Tunisia have experienced political transitions recently, but Tunisia's vulnerability stems from heavy reliance on Algeria's support amid power centralization and dissent suppression in both countries.
May 14 elections are an existential battle for many of Turkey's female voters
AKP's patriarchal politics have redesigned the family and education policies along religious lines, eroded legal and institutional advances, ending the once moderate attitude on gender equality.
Musicians receive draconian prison sentences for setting fire to military draft office in Russia
While some other musicians from the "older generation" of Urals rock club are either supporting or keeping silent about the war, the younger musicians from the Urals are protesting
Why tech companies can no longer ignore their role in shaping politics and society
As the influence of tech companies continues to grow, it falls to civil society, journalists, tech users, and watchdog organisations to keep these firms accountable.
Sri Lanka's proposed anti-terrorism law aims to curb civil protests
There is growing dissent within Sri Lanka against the proposed Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA), which is intended to replace the existing Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) and the accompanying bill.
Russia, Ukraine, and the reemergence of demonstrative political murders
Fomin was one of "patriotic" war bloggers who grew more and more critical of the Kremlin, saying its moves were not decisive or radical enough.
‘History of love in the country of hatred': influencers detained in Russia for LGBTQ+ ‘propaganda’
Apart from widespread censorship, the Russian "anti- LGBT propaganda" law leads to unprecedented pressure on LGBTQ+ people and the organizations helping them.
New study finds internet censorship in Turkmenistan reaches over 122,000 domains
"One of the worst blocking rules in Turkmenistan is that the government blocks every website that ends with w.org, which is Wordpress, used by activists and bloggers."
The designer of the ‘Thanks to Erdoğan’ sticker campaign lands in the president's crosshairs
The stickers read: "This product is expensive because of us. Remember this when you vote," accompanied by pictures of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his political ally Devlet Bahçeli.
How internet shutdowns in Myanmar have been endangering lives and affecting humanitarian work since the coup
The internet blackout has made it difficult for locals to both send and receive information on the conditions in the region, report human rights abuses committed by the military regime, or raise funds for humanitarian business.
In Azerbaijan, residents pay a heavy price to have access to water
Since March 13, residents of at least three villages in Saatli, have taken their demands for stable water access onto the streets.
In Turkey, a popular TV Show gets slapped with fines and a broadcast ban
Ever since the show's premiere in October 2022, its been criticized by both fronts of Turkish society — the secularists and the conservatives.
‘A great day to be a journalist in Fiji’ as Parliament repeals ‘draconian’ media law
"Some of Fiji's best journalists left the industry as a result and the media still carry the mental scars today from that very disturbing period."
In Turkey, will one man continue to rule them all? The May 14th elections hold the answer
The stakes are high, and there is a growing sense among the general public that if the current leadership stays in power, the country's future is grim and uncertain.
The Myanmar junta’s war against Facebook
Social media platforms have an oversized influence on political events such as elections, and they have a responsibility to advance democracy.
How will Hong Kong react to the Gay Games: Support or suppression?
Local organizers downplayed censorship as a non-issue and stressed that “she hoped all participants from around the globe could abide by local laws and respect the local culture.”