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Tuesday, December 19 • 11:00 - 12:00
Surveillance from the Margins (WS184)

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Proposer's Name: Ms. Hija Kamran
Proposer's Organization: Digital Rights Foundation
Co-Proposer's Name: Ms. Nighat Dad
Co-Proposer's Organization: Digital Rights Foundation
Co-Organizers:
Ms., Hija, KAMRAN, Civil society, Digital Rights Foundation
Ms., Nighat, DAD, Civil Society, Digital Rights Foundation

Session Format: Panel - 60 Min

Proposer:
Country: Pakistan
Stakeholder Group: Civil Society

Co-Proposer:
Country: Pakistan
Stakeholder Group: Civil Society

Speaker: Nighat Dad
Speaker: Amalia Toledo
Speaker: Alexandrine Pirlot de Corbion
Speaker: Joana Varon
Speaker: Lisa Garcia
Speaker: David Kaye

Content of the Session:
Surveillance is not a uniform experience, be it surveillance by the state, companies or social actors. The gendered nature of surveillance and the different forms it takes given the positionality of the person experiencing it is particularly glaring when experienced by members of a particular gender or a marginalised community. Sometimes surveillance is discriminatory per se, in that it is directed specifically at people because of their gender, race, class, disability, sexual orientation, etc. For instance, phishing attacks experienced human rights activists or offline and on-the-ground-surveillance of journalists covering controversial topics. In other instances, facially non-discriminatory surveillance is experienced differently by certain individuals because of their marginality and positionality through the disparate impact that it has. It is the second form of surveillance that is often left undiscussed and the intersectionality of race, class, gender, religion, sexual orientation and ability is unexamined.

The purpose of this panel is not only to map and understand the diversified experiences of surveillance but to take these findings regarding the diffused nature of surveillance and work towards actively finding solutions to the particular kinds of surveillance experienced by marginalised groups. The aim of the discussion will also be mainstream discourse from the margins at a global level.

Relevance of the Session:
The different experiences of surveillance are important to recognize in mainstream discourse around surveillance. Digital Rights Foundation has conducted a research on the gendered surveillance experienced by female journalists in Pakistan. Most journalists reported that the nature of the threats and surveillance that they receive takes on a gendered form. During the research, we discovered that there is also an intersectionality of class and minority status in the experience of journalists.

In other online spaces, women and LGBT communities experience heightened social surveillance. This surveillance has the effect of monitoring and modifying certain behaviors and the expression of these groups. The social dynamics of surveillance and the different effects that it has on different groups can only come forth through experiential knowledge and discussions such as the one proposed here.

Digital Rights Foundation is already engaged in critical work that seeks to map and understand the differentiated impact of surveillance. The session will not only feed into that work, but will allow us to partner with others working from the periphery to work towards campaigns and literature that mainstreams this discourse.Furthermore, DRF hopes to take the findings from the panel and its on-going research and turn this topic into a report to be published a few months after the conference.

Tag 1: Surveillance
Tag 2: Access and Diversity
Tag 3: Digital Rights

Interventions:
The panel will consist of a discussion that will start with the perspectives of each panelist and then move on to an interactive debate on the issues of surveillance and its diverse impact. The latter part of the discussion shall also include a question and answer session. At the same time, the discussion will be broadcast online to get the perspective of a wider range of people.

The total time of the panel shall be 60 minutes. The first 40 minutes shall be assigned to the speakers who will be allotted a time of 7 minutes each to present their prepared point of view. Then the last 20 minutes of the discussion will move on to a debate initiated by the moderator, but will involve questions and cross-questions from the speakers (10 minutes) and the audience (10 minutes).

Diversity:
Digital Rights Foundation advocates for diversity in all of its activities. This panel seeks to bring together speakers from different communities and representatives of marginalised communities to share their experiences of surveillance and the address the unacknowledged silences within surveillance discourse. This panel will include activists from different parts of the world, working with marginalised communities and the inequalities that inhere in the digital realm.

The provisionally confirmed speakers include Alexandrine Pirlot de Corbion leads Privacy International’s strategic programme and has worked on fighting for the right to privacy, has researched on issues related to human rights, irregular migration, gender, conflict management, and human security. Anja Kovacs who directs Internet Democracy India, and works for an Internet that supports free speech, democracy and social justice in India and beyond. Courtney Radsch is the Advocacy Director at Committee to Protect Journalists. She is a journalist, researcher, and free expression advocate with more than 13 years of experience in the United States and the Middle East. Nighat Dad heads Digital Rights Foundation, and is the champion of women’s rights to access the internet safely in Pakistan. And Lisa Garcia serves as a Professor in the Charles and Louise Travers Department of Political Science at UC Berkeley. Her current projects include an analysis of how technology can facilitate voter mobilization among voters of color in California and a historical exploration of the race, gender, and class inequality at the heart of the founding of California's public school system.

Onsite Moderator: Alexandrine Pirlot de Corbion
Online Moderator: Hija Kamran
Rapporteur: Hija Kamran

Online Participation:
The online participation at DRF’s session will be closely monitored by the onsite and online moderators, encouraging remote participants to make their voices count in the discussion. The participation will be done via online media like Facebook and Twitter and also any other medium recommended by the IGF team. DRF has encouraged online participation in its previous sessions as well, including the conferences we organised in the home country where the proposed online moderator was specially trained to manage active participation by those attending remotely.

Discussion facilitation:
The onsite moderator along with the present team of DRF will be responsible to facilitate maximum participation by those attending, on-ground and remotely.

Conducted a Workshop in IGF before?: No
Link to Report: 

Additional Reference Document Link: http://digitalrightsfoundation.pk/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/Surveillance-of-Female-Journalists-in-Pakistan.pdf


Agenda: 

Surveillance is not a uniform experience, be it surveillance by the state, companies or social actors. The gendered nature of surveillance and the different forms it takes given the positionality of the person experiencing it is particularly glaring when experienced by members of a particular gender or a marginalised community. Sometimes surveillance is discriminatory per se, in that it is directed specifically at people because of their gender, race, class, disability, sexual orientation, etc. For instance, phishing attacks experienced human rights activists or offline and on-the-ground-surveillance of journalists covering controversial topics. In other instances, facially non-discriminatory surveillance is experienced differently by certain individuals because of their marginality and positionality through the disparate impact that it has. It is the second form of surveillance that is often left undiscussed and the intersectionality of race, class, gender, religion, sexual orientation and ability is unexamined.

The purpose of this panel is not only to map and understand the diversified experiences of surveillance but to take these findings regarding the diffused nature of surveillance and work towards actively finding solutions to the particular kinds of surveillance experienced by marginalised groups. The aim of the discussion will also be mainstream discourse from the margins at a global level.

The panel will consist of a discussion that will start with the perspectives of each panelist and then move on to an interactive debate on the issues of surveillance and its diverse impact. The latter part of the discussion shall also include a question and answer session. At the same time, the discussion will be broadcast online to get the perspective of a wider range of people.

The total time of the panel shall be 60 minutes. The first 40 minutes shall be assigned to the speakers who will be allotted a time of 7 minutes each to present their prepared point of view. Then the last 20 minutes of the discussion will move on to a debate initiated by the moderator, but will in

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Session Organizers
avatar for Hija Kamran

Hija Kamran

Researcher and Communications Manager, Digital Rights Foundation


Tuesday December 19, 2017 11:00 - 12:00
Room XXII - E United Nations Office at Geneva (UNOG)

Attendees (70)