Battles for Democracy. Week 22.
Encryption tool endorsed by Snowden abruptly shuts down; UK government threatened with shutting down the Guardian if files from the Snowden case were not destroyed; Europe on the verge of destroying online comments and free speech; Calls for social media to be censored in Spain after politician’s assassination is mocked on twitter; and much more.
Citizens abused or killed, liberties and rights cut
Encryption Tool Endorsed By Snowden Abruptly Shuts Down. On Wednesday afternoon, the official website for the TrueCrypt encryption software — which allows users to encrypt hard drives and sensitive files — was updated to say that it is no longer safe to use.
UK government threatened with shutting down The Guardian if files from the Snowden case were not destroyed. It seems that there is no other reason than that they didn’t want anyone reporting on the leaked Snowden documents from within the UK, which is completely meaningless these days.
Europe On The Verge Of Destroying Online Comments And Free Speech. An absolutely insane ruling that came out of the European Court of Human Rights last fall, in the case of Delfi AS v. Estonia, which basically said that any website that allows comments can be liable for those comments
Calls For Social Media To Be Censored In Spain After Politician’s Assassination Is Mocked On Twitter. The Spanish government is using the recent assassination of a politician as an excuse to limit free speech in social networks.
City Of London Police Keep Shutting Down Websites With No Court Order. The UK does still hold itself out as being a believer in free speech, but it is difficult to see the shuttering of a website without any due process as little more than blatant censorship.
Citizens unite, react and take action, institutions support them
Google launches ‘right to be forgotten’ webform for removal requests. It is not clear, however, what criteria Google will follow to accept the requests because the ruling of the European Court didn’t clarify it.
Tools For Democracy
Tools to either increase awareness of the threats to democracy, protect yourself against them or to leverage democracy to new levels.
Map the state of media freedom in Europe. A map of the violations, threats and limitations that European media professionals, bloggers and citizen journalists face everyday.
Lo and Behold!
White House Accidentally Reveals CIA’s Top Spy In Afghanistan. For all the exaggerated talk of how much “damage” Ed Snowden has done, he hasn’t actually revealed the names of any spies or put them in any danger. No, that’s the White House’s job. An apparent slip-up meant that the White House distributed a list of people at a press briefing in Afghanistan that clearly identified the CIA’s top spy in the country.
About Pedro Gutierrez
The certainty that a World War on Democracy was going on and we, the people, were unaware of it was keeping me up at night. The fact, crystal clear now after Snowden's revelations, that the new battlefield is your mobile, your laptop, your data and so, that every citizen (i.e. you) is being considered a target was inconceivable for me. And it became worse when I realized that most people just didn't care about it: "I don't mind a bit of spying? I'm a good citizen I've nothing to hide". So when Pirate Times let me write about it in this blog I was happy to finally take action. But dear reader be warned because it may happen to you what already happened to me. Reporting week after week about the battles for democracy has changed my perception of the magnitude of this conflict. I already thought when I started that the situation was terrible and the conflict was not winding down but, no matter what, at the end of every week when I submit my post I realize again that I had underestimated it all.