The Asia Pacific is the most dynamic digital landscape in the world, home to the fastest adopters of new technologies and the largest concentration of mobile and social media users. An escalation in online activism, changing cyber dynamics, developments in digital diplomacy and the exploitation of big data are shaping the region's engagement with the world.
- China's Cyberspace Administration has announced more explicit rules on internet censorship, with the new directive focused on 'pornographic material, false information or rumours, and maintaining incomplete internet security systems'.
- Confused by China's ever-changing approach to online censorship? (when did Japanese cartoons become a problem?) This chart explains it all.
- Crackdowns on freedom of speech by South Korea's government has fueled demand for encrypted online communications with 'secret chat' features now standard for messaging apps.
- Vietnamese netizens are getting bolder online, despite tough laws.
- Despite the arrest and continued interrogation of China's most prominent online feminists and widespread censorship, Chinese women are continuing to protest against sexism using the internet.
- Last month, an editorial in one of Papua New Guinea's largest newspapers, The National, called on the government to push through greater controls on social media use. This week, editor of rival newspaper the Post Courier, Alexander Rheeney, commented on the state of free speech in the country.
- Freedom House research has found that, as China's internet restrictions increase, some security personnel and censors have grown more sympathetic to victims of political and religious persecution.
- As already raised on The Interpreter here, North Korea, Vietnam, Myanmar and China have been ranked in the top ten media censors largely because of strict internet control and censorship measures.
- Singer Katy Perry has stirred Cross-Strait tensions by draping herself in a Taiwanese flag at a concert in Taipei this week while both she and backup dancers were wearing sunflower-themed costumes (why is that symbolic?). Chinese censors were quick to delete all evidence of Perry's outfit on Chinese social media and international media is now speculating whether Perry will face a China ban: