21 December, 2016

Newsletter N° 53, December 2016

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Category: Campaign Newsletter
Eric Miller
9 am

Yes let’s Celebrate!

Dear Subscriber,

In 2016 we saw renewed commitments to strengthen human rights online after the decision to extend the campaign. Ongoing threats of violence and terror, divisive campaigns for national elections and referenda has called
for more and new efforts to counter hate speech with an alternative, human rights for all and solidarity among us. Many funny, sad, reflective and thought provoking events, articles and visual images were produced again
this year. Hate Speech has become a social and political issue, for 2017 we need to work towards effective reporting of hate speech and promoting of human rights speech to counter the hate.

From the European campaign secretariat we thank you for the dynamic 2016 and send best wishes for a joyful hate free 2017.


Balancing Human Rights online

Credit Nicolas Vadot

How to protect everybody’s human rights online was a major question in 2016. Effective reporting and take down of severe hate speech is a campaign focus. Hate speech silences the voices of those it targets, undermining
pluralistic debates on which democracy relies. But where to draw the line? On 7 December the European Commission stated that internet businesses were too slow taking down illegal hate speech, breaching the code of conduct signed earlier in May. But an overreach violates our rights to privacy and freedom
of expression. The Global Network Initiative therefore proposed recommendations to help strike the balance. The Council of Europe is actively engaged in the debate concerned to uphold Human Rights online and set policy standards. It adopted the Council of Europe Internet Governance Strategy this year and together with the growing number of cases at the European Court of Human Rights gives guidance in the debate.

Parliamentarians against hate speech

The No Hate Parliamentary Alliance held its fourth National Seminar in Bosnia and Herzegovina on 15 December to discuss the role of parliamentarians in combatting
intolerance and discrimination. The national seminars were a new initiative this year. They involved the national campaigns and encourage focussed debates on addressing hate speech through policy and practice. The alliance
welcomed new members. It now involves all political fractions and most member states of the
Council of Europe.

Promoting the campaign

Anne Brasseur was appointed Ambassador of the Council of Europe No Hate Speech Movement in March. Since then she promoted the campaign at 25 events and conferences across Europe and beyond. On 3 December she addressed
the Parlatino (Latin-American and Caribbean Parliament) complementing the efforts of the Mexican Campaign and inviting the states to sign the Budapest Convention on Cybercrime.
Her twitter account tells the story of the political and society leaders she motivates to support the campaign.

National Campaigns

National Campaigns extend

The campaign grew to 44 national campaigns with Estonia, France, Germany, Luxembourg and the Flemish community of Belgium joining after the
Council of Europe decided to extend the campaign until December 2017. In the 10 newsletter of 2016 we posted 123 articles about their training
courses, seminars, and campaign events. This is of course a fraction of the actual events organised.

Official Launch in Flanders

On 10 December the Flemish government of Belgium expressed their support for the official launch of the Flemish campaign on the occasion of the Action Day for human rights online.
The event was widely covered in the national media, for more see the blog.

School against Hate Speech

22 youth participated in the 5th School against Hate Speech, 30 November - 4 December, organized by Center for Intercultural Dialogue (CID) with support of Mission of OSCE in Skopje, ‘the
former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia’. Participants will become multipliers providing educational activities on human rights in schools in their local communities and raise awareness of hate speech, discrimination
online and encourage active citizenship and youth activism.

Hate Speech and taboos

A week-long event at the Stove in the United Kingdom focused on hate and its effect on our mental health. After the workshops on ‘legal recourse to address hate crimes’, ‘supporting
friends through hate’ and ‘taboos contributing to hate’ participants created a mural “tabu island” illustrating social taboos. Throughout the week participants kept adding stories breaking taboos and facilitating discussions
around hate speech.

Campaign Partners

No hate with the EYF

In 2016, young Europeans have developed great ideas to combat hate speech and stereotypes. Among the European Youth Foundation (EYF) supported projects
related to hate speech, some have especially grabbed the attention; like the Hate Fighters Network song that promotes the fight against hate speech; The play of school youth telling the love story of a local and a migrant youth in the “Democracism” project of Youthorama in Greece; or the online-platform of the Cypriot NGO Aequitas called “Say No to Hate Speech” with for example, an online chat system  offering support and information for victims of hate speech, their families and friends. See
the Blog for more on these projects. Other projects supported by the EYF can be found on their website.

No Hate Gala

The Romanian Star of Hope Foundation organised two events in Iaşi to challenge mentalities and attitudes towards youth and children with disabilities and to campaign against
hate Speech. On 2 December youth with a disability decorated the Christmas tree. A gala with concert on 15 December welcomed 450 visitors, including 325 youth and children with a disability.

Upcoming Events

7 Feb: Action Day for Safer Internet

The campaign joins the global action for Safer Internet, promoting education for human rights and online media literacy, reporting and countering of hate speech. For more on the Action Day read the blog.

Blog posts

Word of the Day
Publicly acknowledge (a significant or happy) day or event with a social gathering or enjoyable activity.

“My Humanity is bound up with yours, for we can only be Human Together”
Desmon Tutu


2012-2016. Directorate of Democratic Citizenship and Participation, Council of Europe, Youth Department.
Created with Latte Creative

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