On March 31st, 2022, the Washington Foreign Law Society hosted a webinar on Foreign Government Censorship Policies: Challenges for U.S. Businesses. The panel featured Martha Lawless (U.S. International Trade Commission), Allie Funk (Freedom House), Daphne Keller (Stanford Center for Internet and Society), Nigel Cory (The Information Technology and Innovation Foundation), and was moderated by Kate Linton (U.S. International Trade Commission).
Summary of the event: In January 2022, the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) released the first of two reports focused on foreign censorship policies and practices and their impact on U.S. businesses. This report, requested by the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance, highlights the evolution of censorship-related policies and practices in six key foreign markets: China, Russia, Turkey, Vietnam, India, and Indonesia.
During this roundtable, USITC project leader Martha Lawless highlighted the main findings of the report. The distinguished group of experts then shared their reactions and discussed broader censorship trends and challenges going forward, including the ways in which government-imposed extensive censorship and automated surveillance lead to a decline in internet freedom. The panelists also discussed the issue of authoritarian governments imposing restrictive media laws and repressive measures to limit users’ freedom of speech, which adds external pressure on global companies.
The Washington Foreign Law Society wishes to thank the panelists for their time and contributions.
Resources discussed during the event:
– Foreign Censorship Part 1: policies and practices affecting US businesses https://usitc.gov/foreign_censorship_part_1_policies_and_practices.htm
– The Rise of Digital Authoritarianism https://freedomhouse.org/report/freedom-net/2018/rise-digital-authoritarianism
– Russia is determined to make RuTube happen https://www.codastory.com/newsletters/russia-rutube/