RIA Research at World Press Freedom Day events

Research ICT Africa
02 Jun 2023

RIA’s research featured prominently at recent events marking World Press Freedom Day 2023 in New York and Lusaka. The knowledge resource consists of a suite of background papers on digital governance and the challenges for trust and safety commissioned by UNESCO.

“Since the research is informed by a point of view from the majority world, it attracted a lot of interest”, says Principal RIA associate Prof. Guy Berger who presented the studies. “This unique perspective gave particular insights into the problems of the status quo with Internet platform companies, as well as for the regulatory solutions and risks outside of the minority world”.

The RIA insights were featured during three events in New York City. One was a meeting of the UN’s interagency group on disinformation. Another was in introducing a stakeholder consultation held by UNESCO, which is developing Guidelines to Regulate Internet Platforms. The research was also flagged at a roundtable on access to platform data that focused on strengthening online safety for journalists and the viability of news media, which was organised by UNESCO’s International Programme for the Development of Communication. 

Later in the month, Prof. presented the RIA research at the African Media Convention, convened in Zambia, where the findings helped to inform the Lusaka Declaration. This document linked the dissemination and amplification of misinformation, disinformation and hate speech to social media being largely unregulated, and it therefore advocated for a multi-stakeholder approach to work on the challenges.