In this interview, Index on Censorship CEO Jodie Ginsberg gives FIRE an overview of the state of free expression and censorship efforts across the globe. FIRE President and CEO Greg Lukianoff conducted the interview with Ginsberg while he was in London in July 2015.
Before joining Index on Censorship, an organization that defends and promotes free expression worldwide, Ginsberg spent 12 years as a journalist. It’s a job Ginsberg says led her to understand the importance of free speech.
“I became a journalist because I wanted to tell untold stories,” Ginsberg said. “I think information is one of the most powerful tools that we have. I wanted to bring information to people so that they could make decisions for themselves and be more informed.”
Ginsberg took the job at Index on Censorship so that she could defend free expression more directly. Like FIRE, Index on Censorship aims to one day go out of business when censorship is eliminated and there is no longer a need for the organization’s efforts. In the meantime, Ginsberg says her goal is to help people understand why free speech is good for everyone.
Ginsberg also discusses how artists in countries with authoritarian regimes, like rapper El Haqed in Morocco and cartoonist Ali Farzat in Syria, use different forms of expression to push for change.
For more from Ginsberg, including why her “favorite” censor is Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the impact that comedy like that of Bill Hicks and Jim Jeffries has on people, watch the video above.
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