A dizzying day in news. Trump calls an intelligence report containing uncorroborated claims that Russian intelligence has sensitive information on him “fake news.” Meanwhile, newsrooms around the country are grappling with Buzzfeed’s decision to publish an unsourced 35-page dossier claiming Trump has been colluding with Russia for years. All this—and so much more—transpires just before President Obama’s hopeful farewell address, and only 24-hours before the President-elect’s first news conference this evening. -Suzanne Nossel, Executive Director


DARE: Daily Alert on Rights and Expression

PEN America’s take on today’s most pressing threats to free expression


Trump to square off with press after Russia bombshel
The long-awaited first news conference since Trump became president-elect took on new consequence Tuesday evening amid reports that U.S. officials are looking into allegations that Russia may have gathered compromising material on Trump.

Sessions says he’s ‘not sure’ if he would prosecute journalists as AG
Donald Trump’s nominee for attorney general, Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), said during a confirmation hearing Tuesday said he’s “not sure” if he would prosecute journalists in the course of probing government leaks.

Artists Call For Global Culture Strike On America’s Inauguration Day
The J20 Art Strike asks museums, galleries, schools, non-profits, theaters and concert halls to refrain from conducting business as usual.

BuzzFeed’s publication of Trump memos draws controversy
BuzzFeed’s decision to publish unverified memos alleging that Russian operatives have compromising personal and financial information about President-elect Donald Trump has set off a fierce debate about the ethics of the decision and the responsibilities of journalists.

Judge rules woman can’t sue Trump over tweet calling her ‘really dumb’
A New York judge ruled Tuesday that while Donald Trump’s limited vocabulary was used to make demeaning comments about a GOP political consultant on Twitter, what he said did not veer into defamation territory.


Facebook blocks posts in Thailand that the government has blacklisted
On Tuesday, journalist Andrew MacGregor Marshall noticed that some of his posts and those from fellow dissident Somsak Jeamteerasakul were not showing up for users accessing Facebook in Thailand.

Zimbabwe data ruling could be an attempt to clamp down on social media, quell dissent
Zimbawe’s new floor prices for data services could be an attempt to boost state coffers, or government’s way of curbing free speech through social media, according to analysts.

Burma: Fresh fears for freedom of speech under Aung San Suu Kyi’s administration
Given the dozens of people who have been charged or jailed under the new administration for supposed online defamation of the regime, it appears hopeful expectations may have been misplaced.

Think reporting on Trump is hard? Try being a journalist in Donetsk
When war came to my city in eastern Ukraine, it was hard – but vital – for people like me to stay objective.

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