Freedom of expression
HRC44 wrapped up on 14 July. The internet and new technologies were in focus to a significant degree, with a number of resolutions, panels and reports touching on the online dimension of human rights. Here are some highlights of outcomes relating to human rights online at this past session.
The #HoldTheLine Coalition demands the Philippines authorities drop a barrage of bogus tax and foreign ownership cases against internationally celebrated journalist Maria Ressa and Rappler – the news organisation she founded.
Last month the Economic Community of West African States Community Court of Justice ruled that the 2017 internet shutdown in Togo was illegal. But barely a week later, Ethiopia initiated a nationwide shutdown, serving as a reminder of the persistent threat of internet shutdowns on the continent.
Rights and advocacy organisation VOICE expresses deep concern over the arrest of journalists, online activists, teachers, students, writers and cartoonists, among others, under the Digital Security Act 2018, and urges the Bangaldeshi government to scrap the law.
APC welcomes this consultation, as it is timely and integral to our work. The pandemic poses challenges for content moderation, and while we recognise that these are extraordinary times, human rights laws and principles should be the default standards guiding companies’ policies and procedures.
The second episode of Pretty Good Podcast delves deeper into the Philippine court cyber libel ruling against journalists Maria Ressa and Reynaldo Santos Jr. of Rappler, a Philippine news organisation known to be critical of incumbent President Rodrigo Duterte.
APC welcomes the invitation of the Human Rights Council’s Special Procedures to reflect on the impacts of COVID-19 on the exercise of human rights offline and online.
APC and other regional and global civil society organisations call on Brazilian legislators to reject the latest version of the bill and open a participatory discussion on how to respond to the challenges of disinformation while respecting Brazil’s international human rights commitments.
In early 2020, Thailand saw a wave of student protests challenging the tenure and government of the Thai prime minister, but the pandemic forced a suspension of protests. How has social media been used in response?
From 10 - 12 June, CYRILLA and APC hosted a Twitter campaign. The purpose of #DigitalLawsAsia was to explore the human rights impacts of digital regulation in South and Southeast Asia.