BIRN Holds Digital Rights and Freedom Monitoring Training

Posted on

BIRN and Share held a training course from July 22-24 for its newly-selected digital rights monitors from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, North Macedonia, Serbia and Romania on how to classify and gather data on online attacks and freedom violations.

The training course, held in Perast in Montenegro, introduced the participants to the various categories and types of abuses, manipulations and violations.

The second part of the training course was dedicated to brainstorming with BIRN journalists on upcoming regional in-depth investigations into digital rights and information warfare.

In June, BIRN began cooperation with SHARE Foundation in order to determine who are the main players involved in disinformation and propaganda campaigns in Southern and Eastern Europe.

Share Foundation told the course participants in detail about their expertise and standardised rules for categorising digital violations, while BIRN’s editors presented them with BIRN’s editorial policy and guidelines on journalistic standards to help ensure the quality of future stories.

The monitors learned about the methods used for online attacks, and how to distinguish various types of violations, such as information security breaches, information privacy and personal data breaches, pressures exerted because of statements and activities on the internet and manipulations and propaganda in the digital environment.

The cases collected by the monitors will be filed in a newly-created database which was presented during the training course. Continuous monitoring of digital threats and reporting on digital freedom violations will be carried out in accordance with detailed methodology and guidelines based on SHARE Foundation’s know-how and expertise.

Over a period of one year, the monitors will collect information in order to provide facts about digital violations and also to emphasise the use of technology to highlight social issues in countries that are targeted.

The database will be part of the broader online BIRN Investigative Resource Desk (BIRD) and will contain a description of each case and its corresponding sources.