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Turkey event: New online censorship law’s impact on freedom of expression

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New highly controversial ‘censorship’ legislation foreshadows a draconian chapter for freedom of expression and access to information in Turkey. The timing of the legislation raises concerns that the government might attempt to muzzle online discussion in the run-up to the 2023 general elections. What will the impact be on civil society, journalism, and the public more broadly? How should tech companies refrain from succumbing to state pressure and safeguard open debate on their platforms?

ARTICLE 19 and the International Commission of Jurists invite you to an online discussion examining what this legislation means for civil society groups and social media companies based and/or operating in Turkey. Join us on friday, 2 December at 3.30pm CET (5.30pm Turkey time).

The new legislation builds on earlier amendments to the internet law in 2020. It introduces a new crime of dissemination of ‘disinformation’, adding to the arsenal of provisions in the Penal Code that may be used to criminalize independent journalism. Moreover, new severe sanctions against social media providers will make an already hostile operating environment for free speech even more challenging. At worst, social media companies risk a complete closure of the online space for discussions critical of the government, which would be highly concerning, in particular in the context of the upcoming elections.

Our speakers will discuss the implications of the new legislation on journalists, human rights defenders, and social media platforms, including the context of the upcoming 2023 elections. We will address the importance of social media companies remaining resilient against growing pressure and complying with their international obligations on privacy and free speech.

Speakers:

  • Kerem Altıparmak (Ankara Bar Association, International Commission of Jurists)
  • Sarah Clarke (ARTICLE 19)

Moderator:

  • Massimo Frigo (International Commission of Jurists)

Date: Friday, 2 December 2022, 3.30 PM CET

Simultaneous interpretation to Turkish will be provided. Participation will be available during the Q&A session.

Registration is required to attend this online panel. Participants will receive login information upon approved registration.

Please register: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_ALcP39L0TpCUMvNAguKJgQ

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