Participating at Oslo Freedom Forum: ‘Davos for Dissidents’

By Colin Crowell

Last week a convening for human rights activists, dissidents, and technologists was held at the Oslo Freedom Forum in Norway. Dubbed the ‘Davos for Dissidents’, it is an annual event that seeks to avail attendees of the opportunity to bear witness to human rights challenges around the world, share insights and perspectives, and provide support, solidarity, and hope for human rights activists.

Twitter is a global platform for self-expression and live conversation, and has always been the best place to see what’s happening now. Whether it’s breaking news, entertainment, sports, or issues of vital civic importance, Twitter connects people anywhere in the world with live conversation and information. And the human rights community has always been important to Twitter and our employees - vibrant and impactful use of the platform makes concrete our commitment to freedom of expression.

I attended the Oslo Freedom Forum (#OsloFF) with Kira O’Connor of the Twitter Public Policy team to meet with activists and to listen to feedback on their experiences utilizing the platform in the field, as well as to provide trainings and Q&A sessions on both Twitter and Periscope.


While Twitter is a widely employed tool in the human rights community, there was keen interest in Periscope as a new vehicle for bringing live video content to the world. For human rights work, Twitter and Periscope are a potent combination to share experiences and perspectives live, on the ground, and in the moment.