Stories about Freedom of Speech from November, 2011
Russia: Digital Oppression Hits Web Forums as Election Approaches
As the Russian parliamentary election comes closer, dispersed attacks on regional discussion boards have turned into a massive wave of digital oppression. Alexey Sidorenko reports on several cases.
Cuba: Ladies Detained Again
The Ladies in White were once again attacked this weekend as they tried to attend Mass, babalu reports; two of the group's members are allegedly “still being held in a Castro prison.”
Cuba: Overseas Voting
“The attention with which the Spanish community on the Island follows the Spanish electoral process is surprising,” says Generation Y, suggesting that “among voters here there is a clear intention to push the policies of Madrid’s Moncloa Palace so that, in turn, something will move in the Plaza of the...
Russia: Kostroma Police Closes Discussion Board For Criticising Governor
The server of the Kostroma-based discussion board “Kostroma Jedis” (jedi.net.ru) had been confiscated by the police on November 16, 2011 (see police acts here [ru] and here [ru]). The website, which audience was about 12,000 visitors daily, was taken by the police ‘as an evidence’ in the investigation of libelling...
Ukraine: Netizens Appeal to Lithuanian President to Postpone Her Visit
Ukrainian netizens drafted an open letter to the Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaitė, asking her to postpone her visit to Ukraine, currently scheduled for Nov. 22, the seventh anniversary of the 2004 protests known as the Orange Revolution, and explaining that a court's decision to ban citizens from gathering for commemorative...
Liberia: Giving Free Press a Second Chance
The judgment in the controversial media closure case in Liberia gave justice a rare opportunity to prevail. On November 7 the Liberian government shut down three media houses for allegedly spreading hate messages likely to incite violence.
Brazil: Students’ Eviction Strengthens Movement Against Militarization of University
In the morning of November 8, the Brazilian Military Police evicted the University of Sao Paulo's Dean building, which had been occupied by around 70 students in the end of October.
UAE: Female Twitter User Rowda Hamed Summoned for Interrogation
Female Twitter user Rowda Hamed, from the UAE, tweeted saying that she has been summoned for interrogation. She is one of the few Twitter users from the country who support five detained activists who recently went on hunger strike.
Morocco: Call to Free Rapper Haked
In Morocco, a call has gone out for netizens to join in a campaign to free jailed rapper Haked. Mamfakinch tweets: “Help free Moroccan democracy activist & rapper Mouad Haked. Take pic of yourself w/ sign reading #FreeHaked. Send it to FREEMOUAD@GMAIL.COM.” Mamfakinch posts more details on his case here.
Pakistan: SMS Filtration Good Or Bad?
Pakistani blogger Rebz discusses about the merits and demerits of the new SMS filtration step taken by the Pakistan Telecom Authority.
Cuba: Censorship in Film Festival
Generation Y says that the International Festival of the New Latin American Cinema, which takes place in Cuba next month, “has been losing ground in the cultural life of Havana”, partly because of censorship.
Brazil: Real State Speculation Threatens Sacred Ground
Sagrada Terra Especulada (Sacred Speculated Ground), a Brazilian collective that advocates for indigenous land rights, is promoting a documentary [pt] and a petition [pt] in defense of the Pajé Sanctuary, close to Brasilia´s Pilot Plan. Real estate speculation [pt] threatens this area of savannah with the construction of a so-called...
USA: Will Occupy Oakland Activist “Pancho” Be Deported?
Francisco "Pancho" Ramos-Stierle was arrested while meditating at the Oscar Grant Plaza during a raid on the Occupy Oakland, in California, encampment on November 14. After intense public pressure, all criminal charges have been dropped but he still faces deportation.
France: A Rally in Support of Democracy in Ukraine
Maidan.org.ua published Regina Maryanovska's photos [uk] from the Nov. 13 rally in defense of democracy in Ukraine, which took place at Le Parvis des Libertés et des Droits de l’Homme/Trocadéro (the Square of Human Rights) in Paris. Maryanovska, a Paris-based documentary director from Odesa, Ukraine, noted that members of the...
United States: Unexpected Eviction of Occupy Wall Street Protest
On the morning of November 15, New Yorkers woke up to news that police forces had evicted Occupy Wall Street protesters from Zuccotti Park without prior notice. As usual, various opinions continue to circulate in the blogosphere and social networks.
Brazil: Toxic Documentary on the Amazon
Brazilian journalist Felipe Milanez (@felipedjeguaka) published [pt, en] a documentary about the Amazon in the series Toxic – “the various ways in which we detonate our planet” – of the Vice website. The documentary features the environmental activist Zé Claudio Ribeiro da Silva who was killed in May 2011.
Cuba: The Freedom of Twitter
“Mariela Castro, the daughter of Cuban dictator Raul Castro, opened a Twitter account recently to freely share her thoughts 140 characters at a time”: babalu says that the micro-blogging service has made “Mariela [get] a taste of freedom — not her own freedom, but the freedom of other Cubans to...
Jamaica: Lessons from “Occupy” Protests
Pray, laugh, love! says that there are valuable business lessons to be learned from the the Occupy Wall Street protests: “Ultimately…the protestors would’ve been able to call public attention to their plight and send a very strong message to corporations that enough is enough. Importantly, it shows what can happen...
Russia: Hidden Camera Reveals Illegal Electioneering in School
A scandal caused by a hidden camera recording at a school in Krasnoyarsk, Siberia, has highlighted a serious problem in Russian schools: teachers campaigning for the ruling United Russia party.
Cuba: The Church, The Government & The Dissidents
Bloggers question the approach of the Catholic Church in Cuba here and here, while Pedazos de La Isla reports on recent crackdowns on dissidents, here and here.
Bermuda: “Occupy” Movement at its End
Respice Finem comments on the de-occupation of Wall Street, here.