Women in Kuwait are being bought and sold on apps available on the most popular online platforms. Experts call it an ‘online slave market’ - supported by Silicon Valley companies.
BBC News Arabic has gone undercover to expose the users who buy and sell domestic workers.
The traffickers repeatedly break Kuwaiti law - using racist language as part of their sales pitch, confiscating their domestic worker’s passports, withholding their salaries and making the women work excessive hours.
Our investigation found that despite the human rights violations, the apps were still available on major platforms. Since news of the scandal broke, has anything changed?
Presenter: Jonathan Griffin
Reporter: Jess Kelly
Picture: Credit: BBC
The grannies against the far-right
They were just children when Adolf Hitler's rule came to an end, but they will never forget the horrors the Nazis inflicted on their families.
A group of Austrian grandmothers is determined not to let younger generations forget about the dangers of far-right ideologies. As right-wing populism spreads across Europe, they feel their warnings are now more pressing than ever.
"Omas Gegen Rechts" (or "Grannies Against the Right") started as a small Facebook group and has rapidly grown into a protest movement with branches in Austria, Germany, and Italy.
The grannies say they want to prevent history from repeating itself. But others have accused them of scaremongering and of using the past to undermine right-wing politicians.
Is their alarm justified? And can they succeed in containing the populist tide?
Presenter: Marco Silva
(Photo: members of "Grannies Against the Right". Credit: Christopher Glanzl)
How 'state-sponsored trolling' works
When Azerbaijani journalist Arzu Geybulla started to receive abusive messages online, she quickly became suspicious. She had received offensive messages before. But this time was different. She was being flooded with them. So she decided to dig further.
Her investigation brought her into the murky world of state-sponsored trolling. Around the world, more governments are getting involved in harassment campaigns against journalists, activists and citizens. According to the Oxford Internet Institute, 47 countries conducted state-sponsored trolling campaigns in 2019. That’s up from 27 the year before.
Governments are using trolls and campaigns of abuse to silence critics, to sow discord and hold onto power. We meet the targets of government trolling campaigns and the researchers trying to combat them. What can we do about state-sponsored trolling?
Presenter: Mike Wendling
Reporter: Ant Adeane
(Photo: Person in the shadows on a computer. Credit: Getty Images)
The ‘lifeguard’ who saves women on Instagram
Ingebjørg spends hours every day on Instagram, but she’s not posting selfies. She’s trying to save lives.
This softly-spoken 22-year-old has made it her mission to keep an eye on hundreds of desperate young women and girls who post their self-harm pictures and suicidal thoughts on secret accounts that only trusted followers can see.
Many of those involved have eating disorders, depression or other mental health problems. They don’t trust healthcare workers or doctors.
But they do trust Ingebjørg. She can see what they post and she routinely calls the police when she thinks somebody is in danger. It’s earned her the nickname “The Lifeguard”.
Ingebjørg doesn’t work for Instagram. Saving lives isn’t her job, she has no formal training and nobody pays her for what she does. So should the Facebook-owned social network take more responsibility for helping its users?
And what would happen if Ingebjørg wasn’t there?
If you are affected by the issues discussed you can find information about support organisations on the Befrienders Worldwide website https://www.befrienders.org/
Presenter: Catrin Nye
Producer: Ed Main
Editor: Mike Wendling
(Photo Caption: Ingebjørg in her home city of Bergen, Norway / Photo credit: BBC)
The Instagram suicide network
Andrine was 17 years old when she killed herself in March 2017.
For two years her mother left Andrine’s phone untouched in a cardboard box by her front door.
But when a journalist from the Norwegian broadcaster NRK approached her Andrine’s mother plucked up the courage to take a look.
The information from Andrine’s phone uncovered a secretive international network of young women and girls who share pictures of self-harm, thoughts about killing themselves and even their suicidal attempts.
Many of those in the network have eating disorders, depression or other mental health problems. They don’t trust healthcare workers or doctors, and they communicate using private Instagram accounts.
The investigation by NRK has identified at least 15 young women and girls in the network who have taken their own lives in the last three years.
So what responsibility does social media – and Instagram in particular - bear for the deaths?
If you are affected by the issues in this programme you can find information about support organisations on the Befrienders Worldwide website. https://www.befrienders.org/
Presenter: Catrin Nye
Producer: Ed Main
(Photo: A close-up of Andrine pinned on a noticeboard. Credit: BBC)