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Each theme contains useful resources for lawyers on freedom of expression, click below to get started.

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Freedom of expression

An overview of the multi-faceted right to freedom of expression and how it is protected under international law.

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Digital rights

Understanding digital rights is crucial to protecting human rights, as little of our lives today is immune from the forces of technology and the internet.

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Restricting Internet access & online content

An overview of the ways in which access to the internet and online content are restricted around the world.

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Defamation & reputation

An overview of freedom of expression issues in the law, including how defamation is treated in domestic and international law.

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Privacy, security & data protection

An overview of the right to privacy, data protection, and protecting freedom of expression in a digital world.

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Cybercrimes

Describes the different types of cybercrimes, tracks the trends, and evaluates how cybercrimes are dealt with in international law.

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Hate speech

An overview of hate speech and how it is dealt with both under domestic and international law.

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Censorship by private actors

An overview of the ways in which access to content and freedom of expression online are restricted by private actors.

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False news, misinformation & propaganda

An overview of false news, misinformation and propaganda, including causes and potential solutions..

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Litigating freedom of expression

An overview of the various rights and concepts which encompass digital rights.

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The Gambia v Facebook (2021)

In a discovery request, the US District Court held that Facebook must disclose de-platformed content and internal investigation documents relating to the incitement of ethnic hatred against the Rohingyas in Myanmar.

portable_wifi_off Restricting Internet access & online content · thumb_down_alt Hate speech · pan_tool Censorship by private actors · North America · US · Nov 2022

UNESCO guide for amicus curiae interventions in freedom of expression cases

The UNESCO Guide for Amicus Curiae Interventions on Freedom of Expression Cases, developed with the support of Media Defence, seeks to equip civil society organizations with the basic tools to file effective amicus curiae interventions, and encourage them to intervene in cases where freedom of expression standards can be advanced or where the right to freedom of expression or the safety of journalists is at stake. The Guide provides practical information on how to file amicus curiae briefs and sets out strategic considerations – as well as do’s and don’ts – with the goal of helping organizations write the most impactful brief possible.

Africa · Asia · Europe · Global · North America · Oceania · South America · Sep 2021

Emerging Trend: Intermediary Liability

The rise of the ‘big tech giants’ has occasioned dramatic changes in the global information eco-system, including the ways in which people access news and public information, and how the news media generates income and connects with their audiences. It has also created complications with how illegal or rights-violating content, such as hate speech, is dealt with.

fingerprint Privacy, security & data protection · local_police Cybercrimes · Africa · Asia · Europe · North America · Oceania · South America · Apr 2021

Emerging Trend: Surveillance & Encryption

In the digital world, in which our communications increasingly occur online or through digital channels and where we leave an ever-growing trail of data in the wake of so many of our daily activities, digital surveillance is a growing trend and a potential threat to freedom of expression and privacy.

fingerprint Privacy, security & data protection · local_police Cybercrimes · Africa · Asia · Europe · North America · Oceania · South America · Apr 2021

Emerging Trend: Internet Shutdowns

An internet shutdown is an intentional disruption of internet or electronic communications, rendering them inaccessible or effectively unusable, for a specific population or within a location, often to exert control over the flow of information. A shutdown arises when someone, be it the government or a private sector actor, intentionally disrupts the internet, a telecommunications network or an internet service, arguably to control or curb what people say or do.

portable_wifi_off Restricting Internet access & online content · pan_tool Censorship by private actors · Africa · Asia · Europe · North America · Oceania · South America · Apr 2021

Spyware & Digital Surveillance: Factsheet

In the world of advanced methods of data collection, graphics processing and algorithms, there is wide-spread concern that the increasing prevalence of spyware and digital surveillance pose a serious threat to human rights, most notably, privacy and freedom of expression. Spyware and surveillance may take various forms, including but not limited to electronic trackers, security…

record_voice_over Freedom of expression · phonelink_lock Digital rights · portable_wifi_off Restricting Internet access & online content · fingerprint Privacy, security & data protection · local_police Cybercrimes · Africa · Asia · Europe · North America · Oceania · South America · Apr 2021

Reporting at Protests: Factsheet

Protests can be newsworthy events, and in some cases can determine the political or social course of a country for years to come.  Covering protests is therefore a crucial part of a journalist’s responsibilities, but can often be one of the most dangerous.  According to the U.S. Press Freedom Tracker, nearly half of all press freedom…

record_voice_over Freedom of expression · fingerprint Privacy, security & data protection · dvr False news, misinformation & propaganda · Africa · Asia · Europe · North America · Oceania · South America · Apr 2021

Photojournalism: Factsheet

What is photojournalism? Photojournalism is defined by Merriam-Webster dictionary as “journalism in which written copy is subordinate to pictorial usually photographic presentation of news stories or in which a high proportion of pictorial presentation is used.”  Photojournalism is a crucial aspect of modern reporting, and is becoming even more so in societies in which photography…

record_voice_over Freedom of expression · fingerprint Privacy, security & data protection · Africa · Asia · Europe · North America · Oceania · South America · Apr 2021

Gender & Online Harassment: Factsheet

Note: this Factsheet deals with issues of a sensitive nature relating to harassment and gender-based violence. The relationship between gender and online harassment Online harassment and intimidation through text messages, phone calls or social media — often known as cyberstalking or cyber-harassment — severely restricts the enjoyment that persons have of their rights online, particularly…

record_voice_over Freedom of expression · local_fire_department Defamation & reputation · fingerprint Privacy, security & data protection · local_police Cybercrimes · thumb_down_alt Hate speech · pan_tool Censorship by private actors · Africa · Asia · Europe · North America · Oceania · South America · Apr 2021

Explaining the Issues: Internet Shutdowns

In our Explaining the Issues series, we explain legal issues faced by the media – this instalment covers internet shutdowns.

phonelink_lock Digital rights · pan_tool Censorship by private actors · gavel Litigating freedom of expression · Africa · Asia · Europe · North America · Oceania · South America · Oct 2020