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Russia Must Reject Measures to Restrict Bloggers’ Speech

The lower house of the Russian legislature has voted in favor of new legal provisions that would put significant restrictions on popular bloggers and the content they produce. On April 22, the State Duma approved amendments to counter-terror laws that would extend repressive measures currently applied to mass media onto bloggers who draw more than 3,000 daily visitors. CDT urges Russia to reject the proposed amendments and respect privacy and free expression rights of Internet users.

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CDT Submits Comments to the UN on the Right to Privacy in the Digital Age

CDT responded this week to a United Nations consultation regarding the right to privacy in the digital age. CDT’s submission focused on the importance of increased transparency in surveillance laws and practices, the impact of bulk collection of communications data on the right to privacy, and obligations of states to respect the privacy rights of all people, regardless of citizenship or location.

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UN Human Rights Body Urges the US to Respect Privacy Rights of People Worldwide

In a report published yesterday, the United Nations Human Rights Committee raised significant concerns about United States surveillance practices and urged the US to respect the privacy rights of all people, including those located outside of US territory. These “Concluding Observations” offer a summary of findings from the Committee’s review of US compliance with obligations under the human rights treaty the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR).

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Brazil’s “Internet Bill of Rights” Regains Momentum in Congress

This week, Brazil’s lower chamber of congress, the Chamber of Deputies, voted in favor of Marco Civil da Internet, a comprehensive Internet rights bill. Sometimes called the “constitution for the Internet” or the “Internet bill of rights,” Marco Civil contains strong rights-based principles for law relating to the Internet, as well as specific provisions to protect user privacy and free speech rights, promote Internet access, preserve net neutrality, and shield intermediaries from liability for user-generated content.

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UN Resolves to Take On State Surveillance

This week, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) adopted by consensus “The right to privacy in the digital age,” a resolution introduced by Brazil and Germany in the wake of the on-going revelations about the communications surveillance activities of the United States and other countries. The resolution signals that the General Assembly considers privacy an important issue for the United Nations agenda and bolsters the growing drumbeat in favor of international surveillance reform. The resolution also affords the UN the opportunity to decisively address human rights obligations across national borders, a key issue in the discussion about communications surveillance and human rights.

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Freedom House releases Freedom on the Net 2013

On Thursday, Freedom House released Freedom on the Net 2013, the organization’s fourth annual report examining access to ICTs, violations of user rights, limitations on online content, and policy developments that affect Internet openness. The report includes narrative profiles and Internet freedom “scores” for 60 countries around the world, with an emphasis on countries where Internet openness and user rights have historically been at risk. CDT provided comments and insight for the report’s United States profile.

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