RightOn #11: Communicating human rights: How to win the global ‘battle of ideas’
09 September 2020
[Update] The summary and recording of this event are now available.
Pick up a newspaper, turn on the TV or flick through the latest Tweets on your feed, and chances are you will come across a multitude of stories about human rights. However, the vast majority of those stories will be focused on ‘negatives’ – the gross violation of rights in Syria or Myanmar; the threat to human rights posed by new technologies and the ‘surveillance State;’ strident criticisms from US, Turkish, Hungarian or Chinese government officials about the UN, the Human Rights Council or Special Rapporteurs; indignation that Venezuela or Saudi Arabia have won a seat on the Council during the latest elections; suggestions from the US Secretary of State that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is no longer fit-for-purpose; and bleak warnings from leaders that human rights and democracy are being ‘rolled back’ around the world.
This partly reflects human nature and the 24/7 media/social media culture where ‘no news is good news’ or ‘good news is no news,’ and where interest naturally gravitates to the ‘negative.’ But is also reflective of a crisis in confidence amongst the international human rights community, both in their own regard and, in a relative sense, in the context of the ‘global battle of ideas’ with the world’s populist and nationalist leaders, and others who reject universal values and supranational institutions.
To find out what to do about this situation, how we can fight back, and what role modern, professional communication techniques and strategies play in that regard, we invite you to join us for the first web chat of Right On 2.0 on Wednesday, 9 September at 1pm UTC (3 pm CEST).
To register for this event, go to the dedicated page.