The intersection between the internet and human rights, including freedoms of expression and association, is increasingly important as the internet becomes more universal, and increasingly complex as the internet affects more aspects of society, economy, politics and culture. This report suggests two ways to map this intersection, and raises a number of questions that need to be considered by those concerned with the internet, with rights, and with wider public policy.
A growing phenomenon in the internet governance arena is the emergence of charters and sets of principles which aim to guide policy making and to influence the behaviour of different stakeholders using the internet. The phenomenon is predominately driven by two separate but overlapping purposes: to articulate and promote a particular vision of the internet; and as an alternative to legislation and ex-ante regulation which is often considered ineffective, impractical and/or harmful.
Communication, solidarity and the internet: How the internet, information technology and new media are shaping the world working class
From textile factory workers at the Egyptian Mahalla textile plants, to Chinese workers in Honda factories, to Wisconsin public workers: social networks, the internet and new communications technologies are playing a critical role in linking up workers locally, nationally and internationally.
The purpose of this report is to look at the increasing trend for internet intermediaries to be used to police and enforce the law on the internet and even to mete out punishments. As well as undermining the fundamental rights of freedom of communication, privacy and right to a fair trial, this approach is serving to create borders in the online world, undermining the very openness that gives the internet its value for democracy and, indeed, for the economy.