Online, engaged, and on guard

The internet crackles with potential – the ability to connect, share, communicate. But in many countries, these freedoms are stifled by state censorship, surveillance, disinformation and economic inequality. Five reports from China, Russia, Cuba, Somalia and the Middle East show how the struggle for internet freedom plays out in the lives of ordinary citizens.

Illustration by Coelho / RFE/RL

Russian Disinformation 2.0

Since the outbreak of Russia’s conflict with Ukraine in 2014, Moscow’s campaign of disinformation — particularly targeting EU and NATO countries — has moved into overdrive. Only now are the full scope and complexity coming into focus.


Encrypted messaging apps struggle against authoritarian regimes

Repressive governments are fighting back against encrypted messaging apps like WhatsApp and Telegram.


Shrinking space for free speech

The internet gives Arab youth a space to talk, criticize and mobilize. But restrictions on that space are cropping up in Egypt, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Morocco.

Martí Noticias

Options expanding in Cuba?

Adictos al iPhone, a tech startup in Cuba, is betting on broader web access in Cuba. Its staff finds ways to work around communication obstacles.

Illustration by Brian Williamson / VOA