Stories about Freedom of Speech from February, 2012
Iran: Letter from Jailed Blogger Details “Blue Sky of Pain”
Dr. Mehdi Khazali, a jailed Iranian blogger and publisher, wrote a letter this month from prison describing a “blue sky of pain” of his first-hand experience with the injustice of jails in Iran, where prisoners face torture and arbitrary death sentences.
Georgia: Online Campaign Targets Russian President's Facebook Page
With Russian soldiers stations in Georgia's breakaway regions of South Ossetia and Abkhazia, hundreds of Georgians called for their withdrawal on the Russian president's Facebook page.
Tunisia: Court Quashes Verdict Ordering the Filtering of Pornography
Today, the Cassation Court of Tunis (highest court of appeal) threw out a verdict to censor pornography on the Internet. On May, 26, 2011, a court of first instance issued a ruling ordering the Tunisian Internet Agency (ATI), to filter X rated websites. At the time, the decision was criticised by by bloggers, and free speech advocates, who believed that such step could limit freedom of speech, and thus pave the way for the return of censorship. Today's decision received a more favourable response online.
Syria: Call to Free Human Rights Detainees
Syrian blogger Razan Ghazzawi appeals to supporters to exert pressure on the Syrian government to release her colleagues at the Office of the Syrian Center for Media and Freedom of Expression in Damascus. Ghazzawi herself was among those detained when the centre was raided on February 16. She has since...
Iran: Enviromental blogs under fire
Sepher Salimi, a leading environmentalist blogger writes about filtering of several green and environmenal blogs in recent years.
Syria: Shock and Disbelief Over Murder of Journalists
Netizens covering the daily carnage in Syria on social media had to take a step back today to grieve the murder of journalists who risked their lives to travel to Syria and tell the world about the suffering of Syrians.
Angola: Anti-Corruption Initiative Urges CNN to Refuse Advertising Deal
Maka, a website that monitors corruption in Angola, launched an online campaign petitioning CNN International to stop accepting advertisement from the government of President Dos Santos. The presidential budget for 2012 allocates about US$17 million for promoting a positive image of Angola on CNN International, through a company run by...
Egypt: One year after the revolution, 10% of its Social Media Documentation is already gone
One year after the Egyptian revolution, 10% of its Social Media Documentation is already gone. An article on US magazine The Atlantic explains how this is happening, quoting a study conducted by a phD student in computer science and Web preservation at Old Dominion University. “Twitter gives us a new...
United States: Another Assault on Immigrant Culture
The decision to eliminate the Mexican-American studies program from the curriculum of schools has caused outrage. Yarisa Colón covers several initiatives that have been launched to stop this act of censorship against the culture of immigrants in the United States.
Tunisia: A Year After the Revolution, Limitations on Freedom of Expression Continue
A year after the ouster of the Tunisian ex-president, pressure on freedom of press continues in Tunisia. This week, three newsmen from Tunisian printed newspaper "Ettounisia" were arrested for publishing a controverted picture of Tunisian and Real Madrid soccer player Sami Kedira and model Lena Gercke's naked photograph.
South Korea: Judge Who Lampooned President on Social Media Resigns
In South Korea, a judge who posted an insulting message ridiculing the President on his Facebook wall has resigned amid controversy. Although it seems the resignation is due to his poor evaluation result, his fellow judges and activist groups said that the Justice's decision was to gain the favor of President by punishing the judge who made headlines for lampooning him.
Iran: Internet not just spying tool but spy itself
Iran's intelligence Ministry says Internet not just spying tool but spy itself.
Ecuador: Citizens React to Verdict Against Newspaper El Universo
On Thursday, February 16, the highest Ecuadorian court upheld a verdict in favour of President Rafael Correa in a libel case against newspaper El Universo, one of the major dailies in this South American country. Ecuadorian netizens are divided between those who celebrate the verdict and those who define it as a serious offence towards freedom of expression and freedom of the press.
Bermuda: Media Shapes Public's Political Views
Respice Finem says that “two important aspects of the news media on our Island merit attention…first, almost all of the news is event driven with very little investigative journalism. The second…is that the media…have an unwritten code whereby they do not report on the private lives of public figures.”
Syria: Razan Ghazzawi Arrested … Again
Syrian security forces have arrested Syrian blogger and freedom of speech advocate Razan Ghazzawi again, along with 13 of her colleagues. Hisham Almiraat reports.
Tunisia: Visit of an Egyptian Islamist Preacher Causes Uproar
Wajdi Ghonim, an Egyptian Islamist preacher has recently visited Tunisia, where he gave a series of religious lectures. His visit has been the centre of a heated debate on citizen media and angered many in Tunisia, because of his support for female genital mutilation.
Bangladesh: Government Observation of Facebook Ignites Debate
For a while now, the Bangladeshi authorities have been keeping an eye on the social media space and the country's Facebook users are increasingly finding themselves in the eye of the storm. Recently the country's High Court sentenced an university teacher to a 6 month jail term after he failed to appear in court to face trial regarding his Facebook status update.
Morocco: Student Jailed for Insulting King in Video
A 24 year-old Moroccan student, Abdelsamad Haydour, has been sentenced to three years in jail for criticizing the king of Morocco in a video posted on YouTube. The news of the sentence provoked strong reactions on social networks.
South Korea: Online Petition Requestiong Presidential Pardon to His Vocal Critic
South Korean net users have created an online petition [ko] requesting the Korean President to grant a presidential pardon to his vocal critic, Chung Bong-ju, who was jailed for raising stock price manipulation allegations against the president. Within less than a day, this petition has already gathered more than 8...
Martinique, Guadeloupe, France: MP Letchimy Against Minister Guéant
Bloggers and mainstream journalists around the French-speaking blogosphere have been buzzing once more about French Minister of Home Affairs, Claude Guéant, who is notorious for suggesting extreme right-wing policies about national identity, religion and immigration.
Poland: Gossip Portal Accuses Mainstream Media of ACTA Ignorance
A Polish gossip portal's take on the massive anti-ACTA protests has highlighted issues that are truly relevant for today's young people. Katarzyna Odrozek reports on the avalanche of reactions from netizens and the mainstream media that this unlikely source of serious reporting has created.