Archive

Tag Archives: advocacy

This workshop gives hope that the long, overdue policy would finally be adopted after over 13 years of advocacy. The policy would create a vital platform to resolve disputes and complaints between media practitioners and other components of society, without going through the courts of law,” Matšasa said.
He added the policy would also help in the establishment of essential apparatus such as a media ombudsman and media council.
Some of the laws governing the local media industry are outdated and the policy would provide room for their review, Matšasa added.
“Some of these laws date as far back as 1912, and it goes without saying that they need to be revised. The local media currently operates without a clear code of conduct and we are confident that this would effectively be taken care of by the new policy,” Matšasa said.
Any new amendments would help entrench media freedom but enable government to ensure that certain, narrowly defined interests like national security, morals and personal privacy, among others, are protected, he added.

“This workshop gives hope that the long, overdue policy would finally be adopted after over 13 years of advocacy. The policy would create a vital platform to resolve disputes and complaints between media practitioners and other components of society, without going through the courts of law,” Matšasa said.
He added the policy would also help in the establishment of essential apparatus such as a media ombudsman and media council.
Some of the laws governing the local media industry are outdated and the policy would provide room for their review, Matšasa added.
“Some of these laws date as far back as 1912, and it goes without saying that they need to be revised. The local media currently operates without a clear code of conduct and we are confident that this would effectively be taken care of by the new policy,” Matšasa said.
Any new amendments would help entrench media freedom but enable government to ensure that certain, narrowly defined interests like national security, morals and personal privacy, among others, are protected, he added.

As citizens continue to play a critical role in supplying news and human rights footage from around the world, YouTube is committed to creating even better tools to help them. According to the international human rights organization WITNESS’ Cameras Everywhere report, “No video-sharing site or hardware manufacturer currently offers users the option to blur faces or protect identity.”

YouTube is excited to be among the first.

Today we’re launching face blurring – a new tool that allows you to obscure faces within videos with the click of a button.

(YouTube Global Blog, 18 July 2012)

Advocacy in any arena generally takes a long long time. In this context we’re talking about pressuring key Silicon Valley companies that have gone in under a decade from being simple technology providers to being an integral part of everyday human activity across much of the planet.

That one line quoted above was something we’d been talking to YouTube/Google about for 4 years (and that’s more than half of YouTube’s own existence). Those who can make seemingly simple changes like this happen are busy people operating within multiple sets of interlocking wheels of law and policy, and myriad competing internal demands. The conversations with these people started before I got to WITNESS, and they continued after I left in mid-2010 (and continue to this day) – and as the Cameras Everywhere report shows, there’s still plenty to discuss in the future.

Here are my personal recollections and reflections on how the conversations with YouTube that I was involved in developed – with the accent strongly on “personal”. Since I left WITNESS 2 years ago, I’m not party to the latest conversations between YouTube and WITNESS – but I do know where the seeds came from and how they took root. Over at the WITNESS blog Sam Gregory explains the human rights dimension of this move by YouTube.

I am sharing this therefore partial account in the hope that reading a little about our experience will give succour to other activists and researchers running into what seem like brick walls right now. Keep talking, keep trusting, and keep pushing… and embrace serendipity.

[Thurs 19 July – I’ve slightly clarified some of the written-at-1.30am-language…]
[Sun 22 July – further clarification, including of when I left WITNESS.]

Read More

The guy in the video says this is now a Facebook world, and the big pyramid with money at the top and people at the bottom has been turned on its head. Well I don’t really think it has, because this is the first major event I’ve seen our lot [his friends] involved with. And in the end they’re still lobbying the same governments to do the same things they would have 20 years ago. The only difference is people hear about it quicker because of social networks.

I’m sitting in a hotel room in Menlo Park, California, swimming in a pool of creative content – and you should definitely dip a toe in the water… Rik Panganiban, a good friend of WITNESS, has posted a fascinating list of machinima with a social purpose here:

I view machinima (digital films created using a game engine or virtual world) as a powerful and accessible medium for storytelling and artistic expression. And despite its game-based roots, I think there is ample evidence that machinima can be used to engage people on serious issues and ideas — whether its the upcoming US Presidential election or climate change.

[Originally posted here on the WITNESS Hub Blog.]