Open State joins #KeepItOn campaign to fight internet shutdowns

Open State Foundation joined nearly 70 organizations from five continents in launching the #KeepitOn campaign to fight internet shutdowns worldwide. The full list of organizations is available on the campaign website hosted at Access Now.

Internet shutdowns hamper the freedom of expression and access to public information. Since an informed public is essential to democracy, shutting down the internet goes against open government.

The #KeepitOn campaign aims to bring together voices from across the globe to push back on internet shutdowns at every level, from governments to telcos to tech companies to everyday internet users. It began with the adoption of an international definition of internet shutdowns at RightsCon Silicon Valley.

Among other targets, the campaign will challenge service providers to fight back against government shutdown requests; highlight the use of shutdowns during elections; and build consensus at the U.N. and other intergovernmental organizations that people have a basic right to access information and speak freely online.

The campaign website will feature a way for people around the world to securely and safely report shutdowns in order to gather critical information about how they’re being implemented and why.

The launch of #KeepitOn follows a recent shutdown in Iraq — the third in a month — to prevent cheating during school exams, as well as the recent announcement in Ghana that the police are considering blocking social media during upcoming elections in November 2016.