Digitization accelerates, transforms and sometimes even radicalizes existing societal conflicts. The conflict between Russia and Ukraine is but one example. In Colombia, the decades-long struggle between guerrillas, paramilitary groups and the army has shaped the country's politics and its society in many ways, including its digital participation. In large part due to the conflict, many regions were totally cut off from technological developments and struggling with very different concerns than Internet access. Cyber-bulling, especially the harassment of women online, is another example. Difficult to control external forces are able to easily influence societies and national discussions. As a result, digital participation is often restricted or shut down entirely.
The #speakup barometer is a DW Akademie project that examines the connection between digital participation, freedom of expression and access to information. Learn more at www.dw.com/barometer