Gender refers to our constructed self of expectations, behavior and activities, attributed to us on the basis of our sex. Since the online world is developing alongside the real world, in that way, one’s gender identity is taken online, becoming part of their virtual identity and online activity. Human rights violations on the basis of gender identity, women and LGBTQI+ groups are more likely to happen online, taking into account the internet’s globalized nature and space, together with the large amount of content available. Thus, gender identity becomes more vulnerable in online communities and there is a need to combat discrimination and protect gender identity in the virtual world.
Our goals are to:
Having an online network which people from all over the globe can access and participate carries potential threats and negative impacts on gender and gender equality, just like the real world. The problem lies in the massiveness of the virtual world. Since not everything is regulated, human rights, as well as gender based rights are violated. There is a strong presence of hate speech and LGBTQI+ discrimination. Online anonymity is one of the reasons for that. People tend to avoid responsibilities of their actions remaining anonymous and many forms of human rights violations remain unpunished. Shame-talking and online sexism violate individual reputation, threatening one’s right to privacy.
Digital interaction between individuals and groups of people constitutes a benefit for improving gender oriented policies and principles. The online world serves as a tool to exercise freedom of expression through online communities, forums and groups. Social networks and platforms support gender expression and enable easier co-operation between citizens. Internet is a highly accessible space for education promotion in regard to gender-related topics, democracy and human rights, through online campaigns, educational platforms and projects or other channels of online communication.
As a result, the internet can assist law enforcement agencies, state institutions and civil society initiatives with a better response channels to track and tackle gender violence. It also provides citizens with an easy access on building constructive civic participation as they can better express their values online, what serves as a positive step towards meeting gender equality in reality.
Methods of HRE for the virtual life of young people will be added further as a contribution of those who work on fighting for human rights in the virtual world and believe that human rights online need to be equally respected as human rights in the real world.
If you want to provide your experience and expertise in the fields of human rights and non-formal education and help us develop joint HUB of HRE for the virtual world, go to our CONTRIBUTE section.