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Indonesia Digital Rights Situation Report 2019: The Rise of Digital Authoritarianism

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Disputes during the 2019 presidential elections have become one of the important records of the digital rights situation in Indonesia over the past year. Nevertheless, violation of digital rights in Indonesia also happened because of other reasons, like social environment conflict, especially in the regional area. Citizens are either criminalised or their right to security is violated because of their vigilance over public services.

The increasing of criminalisation of citizens due to their activities on the Internet in 2019 has become one of the situations that continue to repeat every year. It is the same with the silencing of critical voices of citizens who express their thoughts and argue over the Internet, especially on social media. Most of the victims are activists and journalists, but new victims have emerged, particularly academics.

The Southeast Asia Freedom of Expression Network (SAFEnet) has been paying attention to the issue of digital rights since 2018, five years after the network was founded, which initially only advocated for freedom of expression online. In general, these digital rights include the right to access the Internet, the right to express using digital media, and the right to feel secure in digital media.

This report is an attempt to not only record the various violations of digital rights that happened during 2019, but also place them in a bigger context as to how they impact democracy. As new terminology, digital rights have not received serious attention, including how these rights are closely related to more fundamental rights, human rights.

Aside from being a tool to introduce digital rights issues, we hope this digital rights situation report can be our advocacy in pushing the country to create fulfilment and protection of digital rights. Happy reading.

The 2019 Indonesian Digital Rights Situation Report can be downloaded here or by clicking the image below.

The report by SAFEnet will be formally launched during a webinar on November 13, 2020, 14:00 Jakarta time (UTC+7). Click here to register to the webinar, and follow SAFEnet on Twitter for more details on the event.

Ellen Kusuma is a member of SAFEnet’s Security and Safety Division.