Press release: With power comes responsibility - Technology firms face increasing expectations to respect human rights

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Article
6 March 2014

Blog: "Where Open Net and Human Rights Met"

Author: Phil Bloomer, Executive Director, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre, and Annabel Short, Program Director, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre

Over the past three days, over 700 delegates from 50 countries came together in San Francisco to discuss technology and human rights at RightsCon. In the closing session, Access Director Brett Solomon said the discussions had reached a “whole new level” from the previous RightsCon in Rio, two years ago, and that a new “lexicon” was emerging. Part of that new lexicon, from where we were sitting, is the meeting of internet freedom activists and “business and human rights” activists – pooling their passions and strategies behind the common cause of greater human emancipation, empowerment, dignity and equality...

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Article
5 March 2014

Blog: "Information technology - the power and responsibility of business"

Author: Annabel Short, Program Director, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre

This week human rights experts, business people and government representatives are gathered at RightsCon in California to discuss the links between human rights and the tech industry – the immense potential of technology to help realize human rights, and also the risks of abuses and how to pre-empt them...Three defining themes are emerging at the intersection of technology and human rights: 1. Weakness of government protections – and prevalence of corporate complicity in government violations...2. The fast-changing nature of technology, and of human rights risks...3. The importance of technology to the human rights movement as a whole. [Refers to Amesys (part of Bull), AOL, Facebook, Twitter, Vodafone, Yahoo!]

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Article
3 March 2014

RightsCon conference on human rights in information & communications tech sectors - 2014

Author: compiled by Business & Human Rights Resource Centre

RightsCon, a conference organised by the NGO Access, is being held 3-5 March 2014 in San Francisco, USA...Access "took submissions under the following...themes: Measuring and preventing risk in the ICT sector; Tech solutions for human rights challenges; Innovations in digital rights; Internet governance reform; Restoring rights in the age of surveillance"
This page covers:
- How to follow what's happening at RightsCon
- Briefing on ICT firms & human rights
- Key sessions on business & human rights
- Media coverage & commentary
[refers to Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Evernote, Renesys, Tumblr, TeliaSonera, Yahoo, RSA, Credo Mobile, Dropbox, AT&T, British Telecom (BT), Verizon, Huawei-Symantec (part of Huawei)]

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Article
28 February 2014

[PDF] Information Technology: The Power and Responsibility of Business

Author: Business & Human Rights Resource Centre

Below we highlight key cases and lessons from our work. We draw from situations that we and other human rights organizations have worked on in six areas: • Combating censorship • Curbing surveillance and repression • Protecting privacy • Broadening access • Engaging the supply chain • Respecting children’s rights Navigating the human rights dimensions of ICT is fraught with challenges, for civil society groups and for companies alike. We fully recognize that, and hope that this briefing provides some clarity on the subject as well as pointers to pitfalls and opportunities. The briefing wraps up with recommendations for companies and for governments.

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Article
28 February 2014

[PDF] With power comes responsibility: Technology firms face increasing expectations to respect human rights

Author: Business & Human Rights Resource Centre

Today Business & Human Rights Resource Centre launched a briefing highlighting the human rights responsibilities of information and communications technology (ICT) companies around the world. The briefing is launched in advance of RightsCon, a major gathering of human rights experts, business people and government representatives in Silicon Valley from 3-5 March, organized by Access. Technology is a powerful tool for human rights. The 10-page briefing calls on ITC firms everywhere to maximize their positive contribution to human rights, and to avoid abuses. With the ever-increasing scrutiny of ITC companies’ conduct – much of this enabled by the internet itself – and the growing availability of practical guidance on how to do the right thing, there is little excuse for inaction.

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