CSOs Combat Government Overreach that Imperils Freedom of Expression
FHI 360

Press repression is a disturbing trend that continues to dog CSOs worldwide. SCS Global Associate Award projects are battling a range of official challenges including legal action, close monitoring and intimidation, direct attacks, isolation, rhetoric, and finance and tax penalties.


In Tanzania, online content providers must now filter, block or monitor prohibited or sensitive content, which is costly and time consuming. The law vaguely defines bloggers to include journalists, social media users, and CSOs, and requires they register or face a $2,000 fine. To exert additional pressure and encourage self-censorship, independent bloggers must pay $440 annually if they choose to register.


In Serbia and the Kyrgyz Republic, government action has been more blatant. A partner organization in Serbia was targeted with its sixth audit in five years for alleged tax fraud, a tactic used to scare off potential advertisers. In the Kyrgyz Republic, government is requiring media outlets to manage their income through authorized Treasury accounts..


With SCS Global support, these CSOs continue to ensure that citizens are well informed about the actions and performance of government institutions and officials.