I hope you are keeping well and in good health during these difficult times. I hope those among you who are able to, have been vaccinated, and those waiting for your turn will be able to feel safe and secure soon. The year hasn’t been kind to writers and journalists; in addition to the threats and pressures writers face, the pandemic has created conditions which allow governments to suspend liberties; eternal vigilance, as always, is necessary.
We are hosting our Writers in Prison Committee meeting virtually again, in partnership with the International Cities of Refuge Network (ICORN), with which we have had a meaningful and robust partnership for 15 years. We will be joined by ICORN colleagues and writers and artists for part of our programme.
We hope you will register for, and join, the three days we will meet for WiPC.
The theme this year is digital dystopia. What was meant to be utopia – the Internet as a way to have borderless and limitless freedom – has become a tool of surveillance, enabling censorship, disseminating dangerous speech, and intimidating writers off platforms. How did we come to this? What tools do we have to assert our freedoms? We will also be discussing the situation in Myanmar, which has receded into the past we had hoped it had left behind. And we will discuss digital security and examples from specific countries, as well as a session on what consent means in our work. Equally importantly, we will be releasing our case list. We will also have centre updates – once again, given the nature of our virtual meeting, please restrict your contribution to no more than three minutes per centre, please. My apologies in advance for the strict time-keeping that we will have to follow.
This year marks the end of my second and final term. It has been a privilege and honour to be the flag-bearer of this committee. We will be holding an election to elect my successor.
I invite you to join the WiPC meeting via Zoom. To register, please click the following link:
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
During the registration, please point out your Centre/ICORN city, position in your Centre and who will be voting for the WiPC Chair elections (one person for each Centre eligible to vote).
The registration deadline is May 15, 2021. No last-minute registration will be admitted.
For further details on the registration, please contact Congresses, Committees, and New Centres Coordinator Olha Mukha at Olha.Mukha@pen-international.org
Detailed agenda is attached.
With my best wishes,
Salil Tripathi, WiPC Chair
Chargée des Congrès, des Comités et des Centres / Encargada de Congresos, Comités y Centros / Congresses, Committees and New Centres Coordinator / PEN International|