By: Earnest Jones | 05-16-2017 | News
Photo credit: Gage Skidmore / Flickr

Sweden's Freedom of speech blocks 14,000 people on Twitter

The inherent human right to voice one's opinion publicly without fear of censorship or punishment is an issue of global concern. The speech in question is not limited to public speaking and is generally taken to include other forms of expression.

Most countries have laws that preserve this right, including the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

However, the degree to which the right is upheld in practice varies greatly from one nation to another. Nations with authoritarian forms of government are likely to experience overt government censorship. The most prevalent way that censorship is conducted such includes the propaganda model.

Sweden claims to protect freedom of speech. The country was a pioneer in officially abolishing censorship. Only a number of restrictions remain such as child pornography, hate speech, and libel.

Surprisingly, Sweden upholds the principle of free speech, only that this time a different approach is being instituted. Who thought that shying away was the best way to deal with of opposing opinions on social media?

In order to promote free speech, the Swedish Institute will undergo an aggressive blocking campaign for their Twitter account @Sweden. The Institute is responsible for promoting Sweden around the world.

A block list has been instituted including 12,000 international and Swedish accounts dedicated to the drive, threat, hatred and incitement against migrants, women and LGBT people, but also against organizations involved in human rights. The other 2,000 accounts blocked are spam and porn bots.

A random Swede runs the @Sweden account each week. The curators are allowed to share their opinions and talk about Sweden through the official account.

Jenny Ljung, who is the Head of Communications at Swedish Institute was speaking in a press release when they said that they’ve noticed that the Internet hate primarily affects women, minorities and those who express strong opinions. If a curator represents all three variables, we know that it will be a tough week on @ Sweden account.

Does free speech call blocking people on Twitter? then we ought to strive live up to Sweden’s contradictory standard.


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1 Comment/s
Anon No. 2942 2017-05-16 : 06:51

Freedom of speech does not give a guarantee of listening. It's not hypocritical for someone to promote free speech and then say they don't want to listen to you anymore.

I really hate what sweden is doing to itself, but to equate FoS with forced listening is bullshit.

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