Civil Society

Posts tagged “Civil Society”

Russia Uses Microsoft to Suppress Dissent

“IRKUTSK, Russia — It was late one afternoon in January when a squad of plainclothes police officers arrived at the headquarters of a prominent environmental group here. They brushed past the staff with barely a word and instead set upon the computers before carting them away. Taken were files that chronicled a generation’s worth of efforts to protect the Siberian wildernes

The group, Baikal Environmental Wave, was organizing protests against Prime Minister Vladimir V. Putin’s decision to reopen a paper factory that had polluted nearby Lake Baikal, a natural wonder that by some estimates holds 20 percent of the world’s fresh water.

Instead, the group fell victim to one of the authorities’ newest tactics for quelling dissent: confiscating computers under the pretext of searching for pirated Microsoft software.”

From The New York Times

Africa’s Gift to Silicon Valley: How to Track a Crisis

Could wiki technology find Osama bin Laden?

Imagine if any Pakistani could send an anonymous text message to the authorities suggesting where to look. Each location could be plotted on a map. The dots would be scattered widely, perhaps, with promising leads indistinguishable from rubbish. But on a given day, a surge of dots might point to the same village, in what could not be coincidence. Troops could be ordered in.

From The New York Times

Activists encourage President Obama to take a stand for free expression

Frontline human rights activists from around the world met with U.S. President Barack Obama at the White House on 18 February to talk about what the U.S. can do to address threats to freedom of association and expression. The meeting was arranged as part of a human rights summit organised by Freedom House and Human Rights First, which included dozens of activists from 27 countries.


Iran: Twitter becomes focal point of protests

Amid renewed clashes between the Iranian authorities and the reformist Green Movement, social networking sites such as Twitter have again become a focal point of the protests against the Islamic regime. As in the aftermath of the disputed presidential elections in June, anti-government protesters have been posting hundreds of accounts, photos and videos of the… Read more »

Nominations open for the Google and Global Voices Breaking Borders Award

Nominations open December 29, 2009 for the Breaking Borders Award, a new prize created by Google and Global Voices to honor outstanding web projects initiated by individuals or groups that demonstrate courage, energy and resourcefulness in using the Internet to promote freedom of expression. The award is also supported by Thomson Reuters. Deadline is February… Read more »

Access: Mobilizing Global Internet Freedom

Born out of the aftermath of the 2009 Iranian election, Access provides innovative, crowd-sourced tech tools to help reutrn the political process to the people. Found at

Twitter's Activist Initiation

By accommodating Iranian dissidents the microblogging site has gone from allowing political activity, to courting it. As Twitter’s popularity has grown, its users in oppressive foreign regimes have slowly realized the power of the simple microblogging service for organizing political dissent. On Monday, for the first time, Twitter’s administrators seem to have acknowledged that power… Read more »

Is the Global Network Initiative making a difference?

This week’s issue of Businessweek has a solid article about how Yahoo! is trying to avoid a repeat of its China mistakes in Vietnam. Yahoo! 360 is very popular among Vietnamese bloggers, but Yahoo! has decided not to host the service out of Vietnam, opting instead to host the Vietnamese Yahoo! 360 in Singapore. ahoo!,… Read more »