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Freedom on the Net 2013

October 8, 2013 Comments off

Freedom on the Net 2013
Source: Freedom House

Freedom on the Net 2013 is the fourth report in a series of comprehensive studies of internet freedom around the globe and covers developments in 60 countries that occurred between May 2012 and April 2013. Over 60 researchers, nearly all based in the countries they analyzed, contributed to the project by researching laws and practices relevant to the digital media, testing the accessibility of select websites, and interviewing a wide range of sources, among other research activities. This edition’s findings indicate that internet freedom worldwide is in decline, with 34 out of 60 countries assessed in the report experiencing a negative trajectory during the coverage period. Broad surveillance, new laws controlling web content, and growing arrests of social-media users drove this overall decline in internet freedom in the past year. Nonetheless, Freedom on the Net 2013 also found that activists are becoming more effective at raising awareness of emerging threats and, in several cases, have helped forestall new repressive measures.

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Freedom on the Net 2012

September 25, 2012 Comments off

Freedom on the Net 2012

Source: Freedom House

This report is the third in a series of comprehensive studies of internet freedom around the globe and covers developments in 47 countries that occurred between January 2011 and May 2012. Over 50 researchers, nearly all based in the countries they analyzed, contributed to the project by researching laws and practices relevant to the internet, testing the accessibility of select websites, and interviewing a wide range of sources.

This year’s findings indicate that restrictions on internet freedom in many countries have continued to grow, though the methods of control are slowly evolving, becoming more sophisticated and less visible. Brutal attacks against bloggers, politically motivated surveillance, proactive manipulation of web content, and restrictive laws regulating speech online are among the diverse threats to internet freedom emerging over the past two years. Nevertheless, several notable victories have also occurred as a result of greater activism by civil society, technology companies, and independent courts, illustrating that efforts to advance internet freedom can yield results.

Freedom House Report Cites Rule of Law, Anti-Corruption as Keys to Arab Spring Success

November 7, 2011 Comments off

Freedom House Report Cites Rule of Law, Anti-Corruption as Keys to Arab Spring Success
Source: Freedom House

A new Freedom House report, Countries at the Crossroads 2011,concludes that success in the Arab democratic revolution will require major reforms in government institutions that had been seriously undermined during previous authoritarian regimes. The report predicts that failure to institute thoroughgoing reforms in areas like adherence torule of law, accountability of the army and security services, protection from state abuse, and official corruption could lead to the ascendance of forces that are hostile to freedom and committed to the reassertion of autocratic rule.

The report notes that while long-entrenched authoritarian leaders have been forced to give way to popular pressure for change, these breakthroughs carry no guarantee that democratically accountable systems will follow in their wake.

“The uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa have dispelled illusions about the durability of authoritarian systems in the Middle East,” said David J. Kramer, president of Freedom House. “By ridding themselves of dictators and leaders for life, the Arab people have vividly demonstrated their devotion to the idea of freedom. But achieving democratic reforms in the region demands long-term commitment, determination, and resilience by societies in the region and supporters in the democratic world. This report drives home the fact that there will be no short cuts to real democracy in Egypt, Tunisia, or the rest of the Middle East.”

+ Countries at the Crossroads 2011

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