Stories about Freedom of Speech from August, 2011
Egypt: The Verb “To Mubarak”
After a San Francisco transportation provider shuts down mobile networks in anticipation of a protest, Egyptians rallied online in support, noting the similarities between events in Cairo and the Bay Area.
Cuba: “Las Damas” – The Struggle Continues
Attacks allegedly continue against Cuba's Ladies in White.
Brazil: Constraining the “Spread” of Homosexuality by Law
The City Council of São José dos Campos, in the Brazilian state of São Paulo, has approved a law by the councilman Cristõvao Gonçalves that forbids the “disclosure of any material that may induce children to homosexuality”, reports [pt] the blog Eleições Hoje (Elections Today).
Ukraine: Intellectuals Condemn Tymoshenko Trial in an Open Letter
Alexander J. Motyl of Ukraine's Orange Blues comments on an open letter signed by “a diverse group of 28 writers, scholars, and commentators,” in which “they condemn the [Tymoshenko] trial and call on Ukrainians not to be indifferent to the injustice being perpetrated by the Yanukovych regime.”
Peru: Journalist Sued for Defamation
Peruvians are following the case [es] of blogger and journalist Luis Torres Montero, @Malapalabrero, sued for defamation [es] by former Defense Minister, Rafael Rey, who felt attacked [es] by a column [es] where Torres [es] says Rey is gay [es].
Ecuador: Newspapers Protest With Covers ‘For Freedom of Expression’
“Major Ecuadorian newspapers ran the same cover today [August 10] — “For Freedom of Expression” — to protest President Rafael Correa’s increasing verbal and legal attacks on the independent media. The President devoted 42 minutes to his State of the Union speech today to criticism of the press”: Adam Isacson...
China: Tweets Didn't Start the Fire
China's main state television station has launched a second offensive against microbloggers and users of other social media, this time on the back of the recent British riots. The attack has left netizens guessing at the true motivation at play.
Sudan: Coup Against Public Liberties
Osman Shinger examines the uncertain future of media freedom in Sudan: “Journalists and rights activists have expressed concern about diminishing press freedom in Sudan. Reporters attribute their pessimism to what they call a “coup” against public liberties. Chief among their concerns is the press freedom that was stipulated in the...
Cuba: Bloggers Comment on Attacks vs. Activists
More on the attacks against activists that took place this past weekend: a statement from The Coalition of Cuban-American Women, a video “of victims who got away with minor injuries”, and reports of two other incidents, here and here.
Slovenia: A Comment on the U.K. Riots
Sleeping With Pengovsky comments on the riots and looting in the U.K.: “But I must say I got the heebie-jeebies when I heard on the BBC that some people were thinking of bringing in the army. Please, don’t. […] I come from the part of the world where there was...
Honduras: Judge Issues Arrest Warrants for Journalist and Environmentalists
“A Honduran judge issued arrest warrants for a journalist and 16 environmental leaders for allegedly opposing a forest management plan in the town of El Porvenir, in central Honduras, reported the Committee for Free Expression (C-Libre in Spanish)”: writes Monica Medel for the Knight Center's Journalism in the Americas blog.
Cuba: “Voces” Magazine 9th Edition
The online publication Revista Voces has published its ninth edition [es] [pdf] with articles by Natacha Herrera, Dimas Castellanos, Reinaldo Escobar and Orlando Luis Pardo Lazo, among many others.
Togo: Journalists Rally to Protect Free Press
On August 6, journalists in Togo rallied in the streets of Lomé to protest against threats to their colleagues. The protest was launched by the association 'SOS Journalists in Danger', who believe that the threats originate from the national intelligence agency. Sylvio Chombey explains further.
Brazil: Hetero Pride or Homo Intolerance?
On August 2, 2011, the city council of Sao Paulo, Brazil, established Heterosexual Pride Day, an event to be celebrated on the third Sunday in December. Indignant netizens are asking the question: does it make sense to dedicate a day to a majority social group that does not suffer any kind of prejudice?
Trust in China’s new media era
The China Media Project has a translation of Chinese scholar Zhang Ming's article about trust in China's new media era.
Cuba: Attacks on Activists
Diaspora bloggers report on attacks against human rights activists in Cuba that allegedly happened this past weekend.
Trinidad & Tobago: Newspaper Prints “Private” Facebook Comments
In a follow-up story in June about threatening emails to journalists allegedly sent from the home of the Prime Minister's advisor, The Trinidad Express quoted from a private Facebook discussion without permission. Since then, there have been two additional stories where Facebook comments were "lifted" without consent.
Russia: New Legislation Against Online Extremism
Russian government submitted a new anti-extremism legislation for approval to the Russian Parliament. News agency ITAR-TASS reports that according to the news legislation, distribution of extremist content online can be punished with 5 years in jail. Vzglyad website explains the legislation treates the publication of content in blogs as public...
Ukraine: Yulia Tymoshenko's Trial and the Legacy of “Gassy Shenanigans”
In the first post on the newly-launched Bordering on Lunacy blog, Euan MacDonald writes about the trial of Ukraine's ex-PM Yulia Tymoshenko – “who is guilty, apparently, of the heinous crime of being in government when Viktor Yanukovych wasn't president of Ukraine.”
Ukraine: Donetsk Investigative Journalist's Apartment Set on Fire
OpenDemocracy.net reports on today's attempt to burn down the apartment of a Donetsk-based investigative journalist Aleksey Matsuka: “It is widely assumed that the attack was ordered by elements working within the local political and business elite, who have served as the focus for much of Aleksey's investigative work.”
Angola: Government Censors News on Massive Fainting Wave
Journalist Orlando Castro, on the blog Alto Hama, criticizes [pt] the decision of the Government of Angola to arrest a journalist who reported on a massive fainting wave. Some claim that what has led more than 500 people to faint across the country since April was an unidentified toxic gas....