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President Trump invites right-wing social media figures to White House, including fringe groups that traffic in fraudulent news and false conspiracy theories, to discuss alleged anti-conservative bias on digital platforms. C.I.A. pushes Congress to expand law on disclosing identities of undercover intelligence agents, raising concerns about criminal penalties that could be used against journalists and whistleblowers. Gubernatorial candidate in Mississippi won’t let a female journalist cover his campaign without a male chaperone. Bipartisan effort to reverse a 25-year ban on access to federal Pell grants for incarcerated people emerges in Congress. -Anoosh Gasparian, External Relations Manager

The most pressing threats and notable goings-on in free expression today


Trump Invites Fringe Social Media Company Popular with Nazis to the White House
President Trump is meeting with a series of right wing figures at the White House to discuss social media issues. But Facebook and Twitter won’t be there. In fact, the only social media network that has publicly said it’s attending is Minds—billed as the crypto “anti-Facebook” and once home to several neo-Nazi extremist groups.

Expansion of Secrecy Law for Intelligence Operatives Alarms Free Press Advocates
The C.I.A. is quietly pushing Congress to significantly expand the scope of a law that makes it a crime to disclose the identities of undercover intelligence agents, raising alarms among advocates of press freedoms.

A Candidate for Governor Says a Female Journalist Can’t Shadow Him—Unless She Brings a Man along
Robert Foster declined Mississippi Today reporter Larrison Campbell’s request for a 15-hour ride-along, unless she brought a male colleague. Campbell and her editor objected on the grounds that it was sexist, and it prevented her from completing a story assignment about the Republican contenders for governor.

After 25 Years, Why the Tide Turned for Pell Grants in Prisons
Studies show that educating incarcerated people works, most notably a 2013 meta-analysis by the RAND Corporation that seems to appear in nearly every recent article on the topic. It reported that individuals who had participated in correctional-education programs had 43 percent lower odds of recidivism than those who did not.

Manuel Duran Case: After 463 Days behind Bars, Reporter Might Be Released on Bond
After 463 days behind bars, first in a Memphis jail, then in various immigration lockups, Memphis Spanish-language journalist Manuel Duran might have a shot at release. An appeals board ordered the reopening of Duran’s immigration case. His supporters hope they’ll be able to bond him out of detention while his case proceeds.


Radio Journalist Killed in the Philippine Island of Mindanao
Eduardo Dizon, a radio host from the southern Philippine island of Mindanao, was shot dead late on Wednesday, according to an organization of journalists, becoming the latest victim in a wave of killings in the country.

Tanzania Says Does Not Know Whether Missing Journalist Is Dead or Alive
Tanzania does not know whether a missing journalist who disappeared two years ago while investigating a series of murders of police and ruling party officials is dead or alive, the country’s foreign minister was quoted as saying.

Female Egypt Journalist Sexually Harassed in Prison
Egyptian journalist Abeer Al-Safti has been subjected to sexual harassment in prison. Al-Safti filed a complaint with the Public Prosecution, noting that her detention without investigation was extended and her complaint of sexual harassment had not been looked into.

Chinese Censorship Is Stifling Country’s Film Industry
Tougher censorship by the Chinese government has blocked potential hits and forced filmmakers to stick with safe formulas that are not winning audiences, while a tax evasion crackdown has made some investors reluctant to back films.

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