On SAGE Insight: Right to anonymity under threat

Special report
From Index on Censorship Magazine

In July, India’s women and child development minister, Maneke Gandhi announced a creation of a new “cyber cell” to monitor instances of women being abused by online trolls. However, although this would not be used specially to target anonymous users online, it has led many to ask how it will affect those wishing to speak freely online without fear of repercussions from the state or society.

“There really is a problem with online abuse, but we have to be careful how we tackle this,” Anja Kovacs, the director of the Delhi-based think-tank Internet Democracy Project told Index. “Law enforcement in all countries tends to make citizens believe that anonymity is somehow harmful. But democracy virtually demands anonymity.”

The article is part of a special report from around the world on the right to anonymity with pieces from the USA, Turkey, Bangladesh and the UK, among others. It also looks at the threat to “fixers”, who provide assistance to foreign correspondents in war zones, once the international media pulls out. Fixers are facing death threats and accusations of being spies for working with the global media.

Link to table of contents for the special report

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