March 25, 2021 - Comments Off on February 2021 Newsletter: Understanding the Cyber Harassment Landscape during the COVID-19 Pandemic
Online Campaigns and Initiatives:
#SaferInternetDay: Understanding the Cyber Harassment Landscape
As part of the Digital Rights Foundation’s “Humara Internet Curriculum” for young adults, to mark #SaferInternetDay the cyber harassment landscape and its various actors were discussed in great length, especially in the context of online violence manifesting into the physical realm targeting women.
Mapping Gender-based violence in Pakistan:
One of the key initiatives by the Digital Rights Foundation in 2020 was to start mapping violence against women in an open database, to show that violence against women is not a one-off occurrence but a systemic problem in the country. The database can be accessed here: bit.ly/3nW9H1W
Cyber Harassment during the COVID-19 pandemic in Pakistan
In collaboration with UN Women, the Digital Rights Foundation published a policy brief on “Cyber Harassment during the COVID-19 pandemic in Pakistan”, unpacking the surge in cyber harassment during the pandemic, followed by a series of policy recommendations on how these issues can be dealt with. Read the policy brief here: https://bit.ly/3bzmcMj
Cyber Harassment Helpline Annual Report (2020)
The Digital Rights Foundation published its Cyber Harassment Helpline Annual Report, giving an insight into the severity of cyber harassment during the pandemic, and urging users to take ownership of digital spaces, to ensure that these spaces are equal and safe for all. The report highlighted that in 2020, a total of 3298 cases were reported on the helpline, which constitutes a 70% increase from the tally in 2019.
You can read the report here: https://bit.ly/3jX6SNa
Self-help Toolkit on Mental Health
This past year has had a horrible impact on all of our mental health, as the COVID 19 pandemic posed a wide array of challenges and pressures. In collaboration with UN Women, the Digital Rights Foundation developed a 'Self Help' Toolkit, which highlighted common stresses people feel, as well as signs that you might be burned out, and how you achieve a healthy work-life balance. Read it here: https://bit.ly/2NAsmDG
DRF issues statement on UN’s commitment to highlight the importance of the right to privacy:
The Digital Rights Foundation issued a statement on the United Nations General Assembly which reemphasizes the UN’s commitment to highlight the importance of the right to privacy. The resolution affirms the right to privacy as mentioned in previous international covenants and conventions. Read our full statement here: https://digitalrightsfoundation.pk/drf-statement-on-un-resolution-on-right-to-privacy-16-12-20/
Nighat Dad shares her thoughts on content moderation and privacy to IFEX:
In a statement to IFEX, Nighat Dad reaffirmed that content moderation is becoming “one of the most important & contentious issues of our times,” noting that the privatisation of decision-making often overlooks the demands and needs of users outside the west.
Nighat Dad on 92 News talking about DRF’s Cyber Harassment Helpline:
Nighat Dad, the Executive Director of the Digital Rights Foundation, spoke with 92 News about the Cyber Harassment Helpline, and shared an important message about data and how we need to be careful about sharing it with others. You can read the report here: https://bit.ly/3jX6SNa
Interview with Geo News about DRF’s Cyber Harassment Helpline:
Our Cyber Harassment Helpline Manager, Jannat, spoke with Geo News about our helpline reports and talked through some potential reasons for the surge we saw in complaints during COVID 19 lockdowns.
Interview with PTV News on Cyber Harassment Helpline:
The Cyber Harassment Helplines' Project Manager, Jannat, spoke with PTV news about the work she and her team does, as well as going through the types of cases they receive and deal with on a daily basis.
Events and Sessions:
Nighat Dad featured at WINGS Forum 2021, discussing Philanthropy and the Digital Revolution:
Nighat Dad, Executive Director of the Digital Rights Foundation, was featured at the WINGS Forum 2021 (virtual seminar series), where alongside a diverse group of speakers, she spoke about philanthropy and the digital revolution, and highlighted the importance of upholding privacy and user protection in digital spaces.
Taking Charge of your digital identity: understanding digital rights
DRF collaborated with the Goethe-Institut Pakistan to conduct a virtual session with young students regarding the importance of digital rights, i.e. freedom of expression, privacy, right to information. The session was an interactive one and students got to do activities through real-work examples during the workshop as well.
Tweet Chat: Imagining a Safer Internet
In this Tweet Chat, participants discussed what the framework of a safer digital environment would look like, and the fundamental tenets of what made the internet an equitable space for all in the first place.
Tweet Chat: Privacy in Pakistan, Ghar Sey Kanoon Tak
In this Tweet Chat, DRF team members spoke about all matters pertaining to privacy in Pakistan, from the household level to legal discussions around data and privacy in the country.
Cyber Harassment Helpline:
Cyber harassment helpline is now available 5 days a week from 9 am to 5 pm through its toll free number and social media platforms. You can contact the helpline on 080039393 or email us at [email protected] between 9 am to 5 pm (monday - friday).
Ab Aur Nahin:
In times of COVID19 domestic abuse is at an all time high where victims do not have anywhere to go. Ab Aur Nahin is a confidential legal and counselor support service specifically designed for victims of harassment and abuse. www.abaurnahin.pk
DRF in collaboration with Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) and the Global Fund to End Violence Against Children launched a portal to combat children’s online safety in Pakistan. The new portal allows internet users in Pakistan to anonymously report child sexual abuse material in three different languages- English, Urdu and Pashto. www.report.iwf.org.uk/pk