Declaration of Internet Freedom Goes Global, Translated into 63 Languages

Contact Info: 

Jenn Ettinger, 202-265-1490 ext. 35

WASHINGTON — The Declaration of Internet Freedom — a statement of principles endorsed by more than 1,500 organizations — has been translated into more than 63 languages. Global Voices, an international coalition of bloggers, organized a 24-hour “translathon” to encourage international participation in the Declaration project and to highlight how everyone has a stake in the future of the Internet.

Among the translated languages are K’iche’, Galician, Afghan Dari, Bengali, Estonian and Hebrew. For a complete list of translations, go to www.internetdeclaration.org.

"I decided to translate the declaration because I did not want my community to be isolated from the world bank of information,” said Mukesh Lama, a professional translator who volunteered to translate the Declaration into Nepali. “Translation of this Declaration into the Nepali language will have a great impact on the use of the Internet for the freedom of expression and freedom of use of the knowledge that human beings from all over the world have gathered since time unknown. I hope the Internet will not be censored by any government of the world in the future and also hope that anybody from all over the world can use the Internet to share knowledge without any hindrance."

“For Mayan cultures and indigenous cultures in general,  technology is not incompatible with their culture, as many might think," added Renata Avila, a Guatemalan lawyer and leader of Creative Commons Guatemala, who organized the translation into Mayan languages. "In fact, a free Internet is a fundamental tool to preserve their languages, their culture, access knowledge and share their vision of the world. Indigenous linguists are particularly excited about the opportunities the Internet offers to engage indigenous youth and teach them the written form of their languages, as often indigenous people know how to speak their languages but not how to write them."

The Global Voices' "translathon" is one of many events being held around the world and across the United States as part of a "Summer of Internet Freedom."

"The Summer of Internet Freedom is resonating across the globe, from Canada to Thailand, France to Sudan," said Josh Levy, Internet campaign director of Free Press, which is coordinating Declaration-related events.  "This effort by Global Voices could bring millions more people into this crucial conversation about safeguarding what's most important about the Internet."

For more personal stories about the Declaration of Internet Freedom, please go to: http://www.freepress.net/blog/2012/08/07/declaration-internet-freedom-translators-speak-out

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