Content on Instagram remains at-risk of deletion, hacking, or censorship, even while feminist and activist groups in Latin America still predominantly organize on the social platform. Recent changes in the social context with the rise of conservative governments in Bolivia, Brazil, Nicaragua, Chile, Peru, and the North Triangle might impact how these platforms succumb to political pressure to censor content. This has happened before when YouTube’s new algorithmic policies, rolled out in 2017, has led to documentation of human rights abuses in Syria disappearing overnight. According to a recent EFF report, "Caught in the Net: The Impact of ‘Extremist’ Speech Regulations on Human Rights Content," in which YouTube has used machine learning-powered automated flagging to terminate thousands of Syrian YouTube channels that were publishing videos documenting human rights violations.

How can open source technology contribute to ongoing efforts to archive and safeguard activist content and history? Join us in sharing insights, trying to come up with new ways, tools, and designs to fix this, as an attempt to counter, together, the bleak yet possible scenario of an erasing of activist histories. This panel will discuss specific examples of censored content and how open source archiving technologies can help create useful records for critical events relevant to human rights violations.

This session aims to ignite a conversation and mobilize the RightsCon community around the topic of corporate social media platforms becoming the de facto recordkeepers of activists’ history while there is still a lack of transparency regarding Big Tech’s content moderation policies. Strengthening the community network by sharing how open source technology can help safeguard activist content history.

Speakers include:

  • Dr. Dima Saber, Research in Media and Cultural Studies Birmingham Centre for Media and Cultural, Birmingham City University
  • Natalie Cadranel, Founder and Director, Open Archive
  • Friedhelm Weinberg, Executive Director of HURIDOCS
  • Iván Martínez, Advocacy Officer, R3D: Red en Defensa de los Derechos Digitales

Organizer and moderator: Isabella Barroso, Program Manager at Meedan

This webinar will be recorded and live-captioned. The webinar recording and transcripts will be posted on this page.