September 17, 2021 - Comments Off on June, July and August 2021 Newsletter: DRF launches Digital 50.50 on Online Freedom of Assembly and Association
Online Campaigns and Initiatives:
DRF launches Digital 50.50 on Online Freedom of Assembly and Association
DRF launched it's second last edition of Digital 50.50 on August 23. It was focused on online freedom of assembly and association. As the world retreated inside the homes during the Coronavirus lockdown in 2020, protests were still held in both online spaces and the streets across the world. This reminded us of the importance of freedom of assembly and association as fundamental human rights and essential requirements for a functioning democracy. Journalists from both Urdu and English media shared their thoughts and words with us on some interesting aspects around the theme.
Link to magazine: https://www.canva.com/design/DAEmriH0G7Y/dfnTz_2bRDrVaqIvZq5MYA/view
Some ways you can secure your snapchat
DRF’s cyber harassment helpline has been seeing an increasing number of calls about people having their Snapchat accounts hacked. It's always a good time to remind ourselves of some of the basics of being safe online. We must always be mindful of our digital safety, given how frequent hacks are becoming.
Blame the criminal, not the victim
DRF shared a series of posts highlighting the importance of accountability in the current situation of physical, verbal and emotional attacks on women. The ongoing femicide in the country is quite distressing and in case of help individuals can reach out to the Cyber Harassment Helpline.
Digital 50.50 edition on ‘Loving Yourself in the Era of Trolling’
DRF launched the Digital 50.50 edition, "Loving Yourself In The Era Of Trolling" issue which is packed full of powerful writing from womxn all across Pakistan who have had to deal with immense trolling for simply existing online.
Read the full magazine here:
Cyber Harassment Helpline’s campaign on key digital rights issues
DRF’s Cyber Harassment Helpline in June shared a series of posts around cyber bullying, harassment, digital safety and infomatic posts around how to file a complaint with the Federal Investigative Agency (FIA).
Policy Brief on #AttacksWontSilenceUs - One year on
Last year, amid rising digital attacks against women journalists, we issued a statement signed by more than 150 women journalists and activists.
To evaluate where we stand a year later, we've launched a new policy brief. Read here: https://bit.ly/2VJeNGt
DRF’s Cyber Harassment Helpline statistics for July 2021
In July, the Cyber Harassment Helpline received a total of 712 complaints, bringing a 54% increase in cases since June. Due to recent incidents and the spotlight on gender based violence, there has been a surge in awareness and resources being shared for the benefit of the public.
DRF’s Cyber Harassment Helpline statistics for June 2021
According to DRF’s Cyber Harassment Helpline statistics in the month of June 2021, there was an almost 40% increase in complaints compared to the previous month of May, 2021. This rise brought to light how much further we all have to go to work towards an equal and safe internet for all.
DRF’s study on Young People and Privacy in Online Spaces
You can read the entire study here: https://bit.ly/3wTeC8B
The Network of Women Journalists statement condemning the petition registered in Gujranwala for treason cases against notable Pakistani journalists
DRF’s Network of Women Journalists on Digital Rights released a statement in June condemning the petition registered in Gujranwala for treason cases against notable Pakistani journalists Hamid Mir and Asma Shirazi.
DRF’s Cyber Harassment Helpline statistics for May 2021
For the month of May 2021, our Cyber Harassment Helpline received a total of 336 complaints.
Afghan people face an impossible choice over their digital footprint
Nighat Dad penned down the aftermath that the Afghan people face over their digital footprint.
Read the full piece here:
Nighat Dad on 92 News about the digital gender divide
Nighat Dad spoke on Subh Savary Pakistan of 92 News regarding the digital gender divide in the country.
Link to interview: https://twitter.com/SubhSavarayPk/status/1427556824010665988?s=20
Nighat Dad spoke on PTV on gender based violence
DRF’s Nighat Dad on 16th August spoke on PTV World on gender based violence and how there is a need for more accountability to make safe spaces for women and gendered minorities.
Link to interview:
Nighat Dad mentioned in Pride of Pakistan
This independence day Nighat Dad was mentioned in the Pride of Pakistan piece by the news.
Read the full piece here:
DRF’s Nighat Dad spoke to Dawn News about the domestic violence bill
DRF’s Nighat Dad spoke on Dawn News on the domestic violence bill and why there is a need for such a bill.
Link to interview:
Events and Sessions:
Understanding the Legal Landscape and Media Law - 27th August
DRF, in collaboration with Free Press Unlimited conducted the first of its series of training based on media law for journalists on the 27th of August. The training was attended by both Urdu and English media and many journalists expressed interest in joining refreshers of the same. It covered Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act 2016 and defamation laws among others.
WISE - Women in Struggle for Empowerment Seminar on The Role of Helplines in Countering Gender Based Violence - 25th August
The Cyber Harassment Helpline took part in a seminar organized by WISE on the role of helplines in working to assist in cases of gender based violence. The Helpline team shared the services it provides, how people can report instances of cyber crime to designated law enforcement authorities and what precautionary measures they can take in order to make themselves more secure online.
Workshop for Gender Minorities, Multan - 24th and 25th August:
DRF organized a two-day workshop for Gender minorities in Multan and the session aimed to create awareness among the Transgender community regarding the legal landscape that governs digital platforms, how to secure personal data and to avoid dangerous practices online that may put the Transgender community at risk.
A cyber-harassment awareness session was also conducted among the participants in which they were provided guidance on how to deal with harassment issues online during COVID-19. They were informed about how to reach out to DRF’s helpline if necessary. Helpline brochures and books were distributed amongst the participants along with hand sanitizers and face masks.
Online Training Session - Digital Safety in the Context of Advocacy movements and Human Rights - 19th August
An online training session regarding digital security within the context of advocacy movements and human rights was conducted.
This session focused on human rights defenders, specifically those belonging to minority communities, and how they can navigate through online spaces safely. Zanaya Chaudhry, a transgender activist, discussed the importance of managing online interactions, and the consequences minority communities faced when being drawn into controversial and potentially harmful online discourses. Zanaya shared a touching message with the participants regarding her personal experiences dealing with marginalization along with the challenges she had to face in order to achieve her objectives.
Nighat Dad spoke on panel ‘Why do we need a world where we control the internet?’
On 15th August Nighat Dad took part in a panel titled, ‘Why do we need a world where we control the internet?’ In the session she highlighted that the internet needs to be a safe space where nobody’s digital identity is threatened.
Nighat Dad session on Violence Against Women: Challenges, Reform and the Pandemic
DRF’s Nighat Dad participated in the webinar ‘Violence Against Women: Challenges, Reform and the Pandemic’ on 19th July at SDPI. The session had renowned speakers discussing the ongoing femicide and the need for reform, especially during the pandemic.
DRF conducted an online training on gender sensitive reporting in mainstream and digital media
On 16th July, DRF hosted an online training with journalists from across the country on gender sensitive reporting. The training included components on understanding the changing terminology around gender, examples of biased news reports and guidelines on reporting in a gender sensitive manner. It also focused and how newsrooms can be sensitized towards being more gender-inclusive.
DRF conducted a training session on ensuring online safety for it's network of journalists on 12th July
The workshop was conducted via zoom considering the Covid situation. It was attended by journalists from digital and mainstream media across the country.
Nighat Dad on Unlock the Freedom with Tauseeq Haider
DRF’s Nighat Dad participated in Friedrich Naumann Foundation’s web-series ‘Unlock Freedom’ with Tauseeq Haider on 10th July. The session focused on internet freedom and digital rights in the country.
DRF on the launch of ‘Algorithmic Decision-Making in Pakistan: A challenge to Right to Equality and Non-Discrimination’
DRF’s Shmyla Khan took part in the Centre for Human Rights’ report launch on "Algorithmic Decision-Making in Pakistan: A Challenge to Right to Equality & Non-Discrimination” on 9th July 2021.
DRF conducted two sessions on Misinformation and Fake News in times of COVID19
DRF conducted sessions on the 6th and 8th of July with journalists and civil society on Misinformation and Fake News in times of COVID19. The session was conducted with the support of Friedrich Naumann Foundation.
Protecting your gatherings online: digitally-mediated assemblies and international law
DRF’s Nighat Dad participated in the session ‘Protecting your gatherings online: digitally-mediated assemblies and international law’ at RightsCon on July 7th. In the session our ED highlighted how policies made in the west have a ripple effect across the globe which is why policies should be thorough and fair.
DRF at #BalochistanYoungGirlsSummerCamp2021
DRF’s Nighat Dad held a session with #BalochistanYoungGirlsSummerCamp2021 on 29th June highlighting the importance of privacy online and also the importance of reclaiming online spaces and filing a complaint of online violence.
DRF conducted a webinar on the report launch of ‘Young People and Privacy in Digital Spaces’
DRF conducted a webinar on account of the report launch titled, ‘Young People and Privacy in Digital Spaces’ on 25th June. The team who worked on the report participated in the event and highlighted their findings in the report.
DRF conducted a session on 'bringing feminism to digital and mainstream media' on 18th June in Islamabad
The session was held in collaboration with Free Press Unlimited. It was attended by journalists from Urdu and English media. The topics covered included understanding the terminology of gender, reflecting on why the media is gender insensitive and guidelines to report in a gender sensitive manner.
DRF on Platform Futures session on Mobile Ecosystems: Opportunities and Challenges in the Asia-Pacific region
DRF participated in the session Mobile Ecosystems: Opportunities and Challenges in the Asia-Pacific region on 11th June. Nighat Dad of DRF took part in the discussion around platforms, access, markets, equity and Tiktok.
Listen to the full session here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=160iBtfVBfA
RightsCon session on Amplifying the human impact of internet shutdowns - why it matters
Nighat Dad spoke on RightsCon on the session ‘Amplifying the human impact of internet shutdowns- why it matters’ on 11th June. The session highlighted how internet shutdowns have an adverse impact on human lives and how the internet now is a fundamental human right.
DRF at Article 19’s session on how civil society carves out space for change in South & Southeast Asia
DRF participated in RightsCon from 7th till 11th June and took part in Article 19’s session on how civil society carves out space for change in South & Southeast Asia. The session focused on how solidarity is important in a shrinking media environment in South and Southeast Asia.
Gender and Disinformation: Towards a Gender-Based Approach for Researchers, Activists and Allies
DRF, along with EU Disinfo Lab, co-hosted a Community Lab at RightsCon titled: Gender and disinformation: towards a gender-based approach for researchers, activists, and allies on 10th June. Through an interactive discussion led by six facilitators, they explored the intersections of gender and disinformation in relation to conflict, political participation, activism, gender-based violence.
Asia Pacific Social Hour
DRF participated at RightsCon social hour on 10th June which was a relaxed discussion around the digital rights movement and how art and humor can be used to promote digital rights.
Digital Security: Perspective from the Margins in Asia
DRF’s Shmyla Khan participated in the RightsCon session on ‘Digital Security: Perspective from the Margins in Asia’ on 9th June which was hosted by Body and Data. Shmyla Khan highlighted how security needs to be redefined and broadened in the digital space. There was also a discussion around how there should be a wider debate around mental health and well being.
Gendered disinformation: How should democracies respond to this threat?
DRF’s Shmyla Khan spoke in the session ‘gendered disinformation: How should democracies respond to this threat?’ by Heinrich Böll Stiftung on 9th June. The event focused on how to improve responses to gendered disinformation online and what platforms can do to help.
Details of the session: https://calendar.boell.de/en/gendered-disinformation
Voicing the shutdowns #LetTheNetWork
DRF’s Nighat Dad participated in the RightsCon session ‘Voicing the shutdowns’ on 8th June 2021. In the session a much needed debate around internet shutdowns across the globe and strategies around it took place.
Silencing the silenced? The impact of takedown legislation on civil liberties and victims of human rights abuses
DRF’s Executive Director participated in the RightsCon session ‘Silencing the silenced? The impact of takedown legislation on civil liberties and victims of human rights abuses on 8th June. The session highlighted the impact of takedown laws on civil liberties and human rights abuses across the globe.
Cyber Harassment Helpline
DRF’s Cyber Harassment Helpline is open and available Monday to Sunday, from 9AM to 5PM. If you or someone you know is being harassed, bullied, or threatened online, please reach out to our Helpline at 0800-39393. You can even send us a DM on any of our social media platforms. You don't have to suffer in silence!
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
IWF Portal: 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