20 July. Launch Publication Internet and Social Media in Asia: Battleground for Freedom of Expression, Tokyo, Japan

FORUM-ASIA will launch a new publication on Internet and Social Media in Asia

Where? , Room 17602, 6th Floor, Building No.17, Aoyama Campus, Aoyama Gakuin University, Tokyo

When? 20 July, 11.00am-12.30pm

Abstract

The dramatic growth of the Internet and the use of social media have created an unprecedented space for the advancement of human rights and democracy all around the world. More and more human rights defenders, dissidents, as well as marginalised and vulnerable groups are now utilising the Internet and social media to get their voices heard, in a manner that has never before been as accessible, effective and wide-reaching.

Asia, as a region, in particular has experienced the fastest Internet growth in the world. However, many governments in Asia have also responded to this development by tightening controls over the Internet and the use of social media. Voices of dissent emerging from these new spaces created by advancements on the Internet have often been met with harsh crackdown by governments. Those who express views that are contrary to dominant cultural and religious norms are particularly targeted – not only by governments but by non-state actors as well. The Internet and social media have thus become battlegrounds between those claiming and utilising the new space for free speech and expressions, and those who seek to close this space.

Internet and Social Media in Asia: Battleground for Freedom of Expression charts these contestations, and analyses the impacts of the Internet and social media on freedom of expression in countries across the Asian region. Based on two regional symposiums on freedom of expression held in 2011 and 2012, this publication compiles numerous cases that illustrate the trends and challenges relating to freedom of expression on the Internet and social media in Asia.

For inquiries, please contact:

John Liu, East Asia Programme Officer, FORUM-ASIA, +66802828610, johnliu@forum-asia.org