Internet Freedom

  • Permalink Can UN declarations and other international instruments fill in national level gaps in freedom of expression protections? 
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    If debate is silenced we risk more violence in the name of religion

If debate is silenced we risk more violence in the name of religion

Thomas Hughes, the Executive Director of ARTICLE 19, argues that states must actively protect free speech rather than merely pay it lip service. 

In the last few months, the rights to freedom of expression and freedom of religion or belief have been brought into sharp focus. The tragic Charlie Hebdo murders, and the subsequent attack on a kosher Supermarket in Paris, […]

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    Chaos and Control: The Competing Tensions of Internet Governance in Iran

Chaos and Control: The Competing Tensions of Internet Governance in Iran

Kyle Bowen, an LSE Media and Communications alumnus who is now a researcher at Small Media, an NGO that seeks the free flow of information, particularly in Iran, discusses the implications of a new report on Iran’s approach to internet governance.

After several hours of intense debate, the 2012 World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT) descended into chaos. Convened to […]

ICANN 52 and the road to WSIS+10

ICANN held the first of its three annual open meetings in Singapore last week. LSE alumna and ICANN fellow Anri van der Spuy attended and encountered a reluctant yet growing willingness to start opening the debate to accommodate broader internet governance issues, besides an expected focus on the IANA stewardship transition.

As one of the primary bodies tasked with the technical […]

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    Between institutional dungeons and the dragons of public opinion: Russian Internet regulation

Between institutional dungeons and the dragons of public opinion: Russian Internet regulation

Gregory Asmolov, a PhD researcher at the LSE, argues that new data from Russia suggest revisiting policies for mitigation of radical Internet regulation, based on his recent paper that explores why Russian public opinion is generally in favour of regulation. 

The Russian Internet, also known as Runet, has played an important political role since the turn of the century. […]

The legislative future of virtual currencies

Privacy and virtual identity researcher, Niels Vandezande of the Interdisciplinary Centre for Law and ICT (ICRI) at the University of Leuven explores legislative developments targeting virtual currencies like bitcoin in the US and EU, and argues that 2015 may be an important year for virtual currencies due to increasing stability and upcoming court decisions.

Virtual currencies – and especially cryptocurrencies such as […]

Online freedoms: all relative?

Freedom House published its annual report Freedom on the Net 2014 today, which studies and evaluates the development of internet and digital media freedom in 65 countries around the world. LSE Alum Anri van der Spuy, who contributed to the report on the United Kingdom with the LSE Media Policy Project (but was not involved in the scoring process), […]

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    Alternative internet(s): the benefits and challenges of distributed services

Alternative internet(s): the benefits and challenges of distributed services

In our series on alternative internet(s), Melanie Dulong de Rosnay, researcher at the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) Institute for Communication Sciences and a visiting fellow at the LSE, looks at the benefits and challenges of distributed internet architectures, including difficulties in assigning responsibility, liability, and identity. Read the introduction to the series that explains more about alternative internet(s) here. 
Activists are relying on alternative applications […]

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    Pew Research Center study finds online harassment common: key findings

Pew Research Center study finds online harassment common: key findings

Maeve Duggan is a research analyst for the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project. She shares the key findings from Pew’s recent study of online harassment. 

Last week, Pew Research Center released its first in-depth study of online harassment among American adults, which examined the prevalence of harassment online, its various forms, where it occurs, and how people respond. […]

Zero-rating: enabling or restricting Internet access?

Noelle De Guzman, a Regional Programmes Coordinator for Asia-Pacific at the Internet Society and LSE alumna looks at the pros and cons of zero-rating, but argues that even if it has benefits it is not an appropriate policy for improving connectivity in the long term. 

Broadband access policies have in recent years occupied a prime spot in digital divide discussions. […]

Surveillance Policy Should Not Be Enshrouded in Secrecy

Mayya Novakovskiy, an MSc student in Politics and Communications at the LSE, summarizes the recent Human Rights Watch report on large scale surveillance and argues that the report does not go far enough to question surveillance policy and government transparency. 

Last month Human Rights Watch put out a report analyzing the impact large scale surveillance has had on journalism, the […]