The Right to Freedom of Expression Online in Jordan

Published: May 2019

Social media has become a vital tool for free expression around the world. Recognizing this growth, a number of countries have adopted regulatory frameworks to ensure the safe and legal use of digital platforms and prevent illicit online activities. However, in doing so, some countries have adopted or are considering regulations that threatens to limit freedom of expression online.

One such case is Jordan, where seventy-five percent of adults use social media daily (primarily Facebook and Twitter). Since October 2017, Jordan’s government has repeatedly attempted to amend the law on cybercrimes to regulate the use of social media in ways that would limit or inhibit free expression online. In their most recent form, the proposed amendments to Cybercrimes Law No. 27 of 2015 would criminalize and penalize broadly defined expressive acts, including spreading rumors or false information online.

To foster deeper understanding of the laws and regulations aimed at social media use, ICNL’s guide explores the right to online freedom of expression in Jordan. The guide is a useful resource for civil society organizations, activists, legal experts, and anyone interested in the regulatory framework for online expression. A suite of awareness-raising videos were also created to accompany the guide. They can be viewed on our Facebook page here.

We would like to thank the ICNL staff and partners who helped produce this guide, as well as the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Jordan, which provided generous support to make the guide possible.