7amleh Contributes to Online Discussions On Digital Rights During Corona Virus Lockdown


7amleh - The Arab Center for the Advancement of Social Media participated in six online events on digital rights during the coronavirus pandemic in April, May and June this year. Four of these discussions focused specifically on the impact of Covid-19 on digital rights. 7amleh members discussed how the corona virus is used to further digital rights violations of Palestinians.

7amleh’s Advocacy Coordinator, Lina Higazi, participated in the 3-day seminar “Digital Organizing: Technology, cooperation and Human Rights” organized by NovAct between 28-30 April which discussed new technologies’ potential for social change and the threat that they lead to totalitarian surveillance, in particular under  the guise of the corona pandemic. Lina explained how Israel is using surveillance technologies under the guise of the coronavirus to spy on Palestinians, and stressed the importance of digital organizing. This webinar had more than 100 participants. 

7amleh’s International Relations Coordinator, Alison Carmel, participated in the Internet Freedom Festival’s Growing Privacy Concerns During COVIDonline talk with Maria Paz Canale from Derechos Digitales on how technology is used to combat the covid-19 outbreak on 23 April. This includes violations to privacy from Israel and the development of new legislations under the guise of state emergency which can further silence freedom of expression and violate people’s right to privacy. 30 people participated in this webinar.

7amleh’s Executive Director, Nadim Nashif, participated in Makan’s evening talkStates of Surveillance: Understanding “security” & containment in Palestine/Israel amidst a global state of emergency” on 28th April. This discussion focused on how the corona virus pandemic and the “emergency situation” declared because it further increased surveillance of Palestinians, and how in the broader picture this is happening all around the world. Approximately 120 people were reached with this webinar. 

Nadim Nashif also participated in the digital discussion "Freedom of Expression in the Shadow of the Corona Pandemic" organized by the Samir Kassir Foundation on 2nd June. He talked about the spread of fake news in light of the crisis in Palestine, and the arrests of the fabricators of these news, and pointed out the need to work towards sound media education as an effective solution to counteract fake news.

In Doha, Qatar, Al-Rozana Youth Group hosted Nadim Nashif for the digital discussion "Violation of the digital rights of Palestinians and how to tackle these" on 10th June. Nadim explained the digital violations perpetrated by the Israeli government against Palestinians.

Lastly, Mona Shtaya, a member of 7amleh's  advisory board participated in the digital discussion "Internet Control in the Arab Region" organized by the Technology and Law Society “Masaar Net” and “Smex” organization. Mona Shtayyeh discussed the Palestinian electronic crime law, which led to the blocking of a number of websites criticising the Palestinian Authority, in addition to clamping down on Palestinian content on social media.

Additionally to participating in these speaking engagements, 7amleh held a series of eight webinars, as part of the activities for the Palestine Digital Activism Forum 2020, surrounding digital rights issues during the corona virus pandemic, including looking at how the corona pandemic has impacted Palestinian digital rights, the digital rights of people in the MENA region, people working from home, and women’s digital safety among other relevant issues.


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