“Freedom and the Internet in Macedonia”: Privacy, Fake News and Hate Speech are the new challenges


The “Freedom and the Internet in Macedonia” conference, organized by the Foundation for Internet and Society “Metamorphosis”, as part of the celebration of the 25th anniversary of the Foundation Open Society Macedonia (FOSM) – was held at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MSU) today.#ФООМ25

The conference discussed the development of the Internet in the country, the challenges the online media community face and their experiences and needs. MSU2

The topic of “The Free Flow of Information – A Prerequisite for an Open Society” was addressed by Bardhyl Jashari, the executive director of “Metamorphosis” and Santa Argirova, a member of the FOSM Board of Directors.

“At the beginning, the problem and the “fight” was about access to the Internet and the small number of users. Now there is a different fight, its about protection of privacy, fake news and hate speech”, said Jashari.

According to Argirova, there is still a huge gap between generations using the Internet, its main advantage being that it is open and works two ways.

“With the Internet, every citizen has his own medium. Through the Internet, the right to free information is exercised and it is the perfect mirror of a society”, said Argirova.

Sofce Jovanovska, head of Cabinet of the Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs and Coordination with Economic Departments, Jovan Kolov from Netcuteria, Ognen Firfov, Director of Internal Audits at Makedonski Telekom, addressed the first panel discussion on key moments in the development of the Internet in Macedonia, and Igor Trajkovski, founder and owner of Time.mk. MSU1

“The Role of Online Media in the Fight for Freedom of Speech” was addressed by Branko Geroski, head of “Plusinfo”, Elida Zylbeari,, editor of “Portalb”, Zoran Andonovski, editor of “Meta” News Agency and Nikola Gelevski, editor of “Okno”.

Emir Zulehic, editor of “Raskrinkavanje.ba” from Sarajevo, Tomislav Georgiev, a photojournalist, Natalija Milenkovska, a lawyer, and Zvezdan Georgievski from the Independent Union of Journalists and Media Workers (SSNM) talked about “Plagiarism and Fake News – A Threat to Professional Journalism”.

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