Exposing Human Rights Violations Through Video

September 20th, 2010 by Andy in Human Rights (Torture & 'The War on Terror')

(The issues raised by the examples below are gaining increasing amounts of attention in the public sphere. I sense the influence of the rise of WikiLeaks from the last few years in this. This is a vital part and major componant of the future of human rights work. - Editor, USTV Media)

Human Rights Violations Caught on Tape

Would you blow the whistle on YouTube? WITNESS poses this question and more in a new collaboration.

WITNESS, an organization that uses video to expose human rights violations, has launched a series of blog posts in collaboration with YouTube. Previous topics included just why video matters and what steps can be taken to protect yourself and your filmed subjects.

Whether it’s officials in China cracking down on farmers’ protests, exposure of unfair, illegal child labor practices in Kazakhstan, or Iranian merchants striking in protest of tax increases, citizen-created video plays an increasingly vital role in providing unvarnished truths as well as to protecting the rights of those who sometimes put themselves at great risk to capture and disseminate that truth.

Now, WITNESS and YouTube are turning their collective lenses on the delicate balance between safety with the need to expose injustices. On the third in the series, WITNESS and YouTube pose three important questions, and they really want to hear what you have to say in response:

1. How can uploaders balance privacy concerns with the need for wider exposure?
2. How can we stay alert to human rights footage without getting de-sensitized to it?
3. Does human rights content online require some kind of special status?

These are important emerging matters whose urgency is underscored by the rapid rate of technological change as well as the increasingly wide reach of technology’s availability. And the WITNESS/YouTube partnership sincerely hopes that you will give the matter some thought and weigh in with your ideas.

Please visit and read this latest blog post, where you can sign in to the moderated forum and offer your insights.

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