- an Amnesty International campaign against Internet censorship

Let me take a quick break from all the technical posts to turn to a more political topic for a minute.

Amnesty International has recently started the campaign against Internet censorship, which promotes freedom of information and expression, as well as human rights:

Chat rooms monitored. Blogs deleted. Websites blocked. Search engines restricted. People imprisoned for simply posting and sharing information.
The Internet is a new frontier in the struggle for human rights. Governments – with the help of some of the biggest IT companies in the world – are cracking down on freedom of expression. Amnesty International, with the support of The Observer, is launching a campaign to show that online or offline the human voice and human rights are impossible to repress.

There are many ways you can help, e.g. by

  • Signing the pledge on Internet freedom. So far, more than 16.000 people have already signed (in the first few days). In November, the results of the pledge will be presented to governments and companies attending a UN conference to discuss the future of the Internet. The more people sign the pledge, the clearer the message will be they will get from the people (us).
  • Undermine censorship "by publishing irrepressible fragments of censored material on your own site. The more people take part, the more we can defeat unwarranted censorship and create an unstoppable network of protest". The small box on the right contains a random selection of such material. You can easily add such a box to your website via simple cut'n'pasting.

Btw, the OpenNet Initiative (ONI) has an interesting (Flash-based) Internet Filtering Map, showing where in the world information is filtered/censored at which level...

Fore more information, you might also want to read this BBC NEWS article.

And finally, here's the whole text of the pledge. Repeat after me:

I believe the Internet should be a force for
political freedom, not repression. People have
the right to seek and receive information and to
express their peaceful beliefs online without
fear or interference.
I call on governments to stop the unwarranted
restriction of freedom of expression on the
Internet – and on companies to stop helping them do it.


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I am going to help...

Thanks, Uwe, for this information.

I am going to help by: Signing the pledge and adding a box to my site. It's important to be united in the struggle for human rights.

And, I am going to write about this in my blog (via Uwe) ;-)