Internet Freedom and U.S. Diplomacy
Information technologies are revolutionizing how governments interact with their citizens, and how citizens interact with each other. Across the Middle East, anti-government activists are harnessing the power of social media to rally against regimes. Meanwhile, governments in Iran and China are using sophisticated tools to police the web. So what do these new tech challenges mean for American diplomacy?
Technology played a critical role in helping organize protesters and amplify their grievances in Egypt and Tunisia. But YouTube and Twitter didn't cause the uprisings playing out across the Middle East. Alec Ross explains the different roles technology has played.
On February 15th, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton delivered her second major address on "Internet Freedom," the principle that all countries should protect freedoms of assembly and speech in the digital square (see video of the speech below). But what happens when that principle creates tensions with U.S. allies?
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, "Internet Rights and Wrongs: Choices and Challenges in a Networked World" (February 15, 2011; George Washington University)