At the nexus of technology and human rights, Movements connects dissidents in closed societies with individuals around the world with skills to help.
This powerful combination provides those fighting for human rights in dictatorships with the expertise they need to strengthen their voice. Movements takes out the middleman in human rights and creates links to strengthen dissidents and weaken dictators.
It gives average people with unique skills the ability to help activists in need. Crowdsourcing the fight for human rights is a new solution to an old problem. Movements is where anyone with a skill – artists, writers, journalists, translators, technologists, PR experts, policy-makers and more – can connect directly with human rights activists in closed societies.
Our philosophy is that big, collective actions are only possible through small, individual ones. Everyone has a role to play.
Recent Success Stories
A 16-year old blogger was arrested by the police in Singapore for publishing material online that was deemed to be inappropriate. The Movements team connected him with an attorney in New York who is providing him with pro bono legal advice.
An Iraqi user sought help setting up an English language website to bridge th gap between common media representations of Iraq and the reality. Movements users provided him with the advice he needed to set up his website.
Leonid Martynyuk, a Russian activist closely affiliated with the late opposition politician Boris Nemtsov, left Russia in 2014, fearing imprisonment for his political activities, and is seeking asylum in the U.S. Through Movements, Leonid connected to an attorney who has taken on his asylum case on a pro-bono basis.
Egyptian secular activist, Kareem Al Banna, posted on Movements asking to draw attention topublicize his arrest and suppression of free thought via social media. His post was shared widely on social media, including the Richard Dawkins Foundation, and reached millions of people in a few hours. Al Banna posted another request to have his articles translated so that they can be sent to an American lawyer. They were translated in less than 24 hours and returned to his attorney.
Senators Rubio and Kirk asked dissidents and activists to get in touch with their offices so that they could bring their stories to the attention of the United States Congress. Hundreds of activists responded.
An editor of The Forward asked for stories about imprisoned Saudi blogger Raif Badawi. A Movements user contributed an article for publication.
Prominent Saudi activist Samar Badawi started a blog featuring political prisoner Waleed Abu Al Khayer’s articles, with the aim of attracting international attention to Al Khayer’s case. Activists from Movements translated five articles written in Arabic to English.
Kaveh Taheri, an Iranian and activist who has been imprisoned for his activities in the Green Movement,requested media coverage and was interviewed by a Syrian blogger.
A team of tech experts needed an attorney to help start a nonprofit to overcome China’s “Great Firewall.” A lawyer with expertise in U.S. nonprofit law volunteered to help.
An LGBT individual from Russia went to the U.S. to seek asylum. An immigration attorney offered to help with the asylum application process.
ISIL attacked the Syrian city of Al Hassakah and took 190 Christians and Assyrians hostage. Hadeel Kouky, a refugee from Al Hassakah now living in the United States, requested media attention. The next day she was interviewed by Fox News.
After the death of the American Bengali writer Avijit Roy, a number of Bengali translators and writers asked Movements to translate Roy’s work into English. Several users provided translations, which will bring his work to a wider audience.
An activist from Morocco requested an English translation of an article that in a Saudi newspaper about the beheading of an “apostate,” in order to raise awareness about these practices. The article wastranslated, and distributed across multiple media platforms and human rights organizations around the world.
A jailed Syrian poet asked for an English translation of the poems he wrote in prison. A user from South Carolina translated the poems.
A Russian author and video producer and his wife were unable to secure asylum in the United States despite a clear threat to their security. An immigration lawyer in New York saw their post, contacted the couple, and is now representing them.
The Syrian Electronic Army flooded Facebook with complaints about an activist, causing Facebook to close his account. Within 48 hours, a member of the Movements community, with a connection to Facebook, got his account reactivated.
Ensaf Haider requested media coverage for her husband, Raif Badawi, imprisoned for blasphemy in Saudi Arabia and sentenced to 1,000 lashes. Movements’ partner publication The Daily Beastfeatured her story on the front page, reaching an audience of 20 million people per month.
The campaign to Free Nadiya Savchenko (the Ukrainian pilot held illegally by Russia) asked Movements to translate evidentiary documents into English for use by her legal team. Users from around the world translated over seventy pages of documents that will be used by her legal team to try to secure her release.
An anti-Putin opposition group was looking for web design company to build their site. Within a few days of posting their request, a developer connected with them.
A Syrian activist and university student seeking asylum in the United States posted an urgent request for help and representation, fearing for his life is he returned to Syria. A professor at the John Marshall Law School took his case, and is helping the activist secure asylum.
A well-known former Iranian political prisoner asked for help saving a radio station he runs which broadcasts into Iran. A senior American official saw the post and reached out to the dissident.
A transgender woman in Saudi Arabia sought advice and support, as she was being abused by her family and the authorities. An LGBT media organization in Europe connected with her to provide support.
A North Korean defector requested help getting information in and out of their dictatorial regime. Radio, satellite, and computer experts connected with the defector to advise on technological methods to do this.
A Cuban blogger hoping to circumvent censorship in her home country and Ecuador posted a request for technological help to evade government firewalls. She was contacted by several computer programmers and security experts who offered to advise her on safe digital practices.
Activists requested an original song to honor the late Russian attorney, Sergei Magnitsky, who was arrested and killed in prison after exposing the corruption of the Putin regime. A songwriter in NYC saw the request on Movements.org, and responded with an original composition commemorating his life. A music video was then made featuring Russian activists including Pussy Riot’s Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, and the song has been covered by outlets including the Wall Street Journal and Al Jazeera.
Movements received a request written on behalf of a famous Syrian dissident who spent a decade in prison under Bashar al-Assad’s regime, asking to publish an op-ed in a major American publicationabout how to bring peace to Syria. A short time later, the article was published in Movements’ partner publication The Daily Beast.
A Saudi expert on combatting state-sponsored incitement to religious violence posted a request to speak with members of the German government about incendiary material in Saudi textbooks, due to Germany’s strict anti-hate-speech laws. A former German foundation executive saw the post and isconnecting the Saudi activist with senior members of the German government.
A secular Syrian group posted a request for PR assistance to explain to American policy makers that the opposition is not comprised solely of radical elements. The founder of a strategic communication firm based in Los Angeles responded and offered their help.
An editor from a major American newspaper posted a request for human rights stories that have not received attention in the press. He was contacted by a liberal activist from Iraq whose family and friends were killed by al-Qaeda.