31 Facts About Freedom House


Freedom House is a non-profit, majority U S government funded organization in Washington, D C, that conducts research and advocacy on democracy, political freedom, and human rights.

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Freedom House was founded in October 1941, and Wendell Willkie and Eleanor Roosevelt served as its first honorary chairpersons.

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George Field then conceived the idea of all of the groups maintaining their separate identities under one roof—Freedom House—to promote the concrete application of the principles of freedom.

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Freedom House had physical form in a New York City building that represented the organization's goals.

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In January 1944, Freedom House moved to 5 West 54th Street, a former residence that Robert Lehman lent to the organization.

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Freedom House sponsored influential radio programs including The Voice of Freedom and Our Secret Weapon, a CBS radio series created to counter Axis shortwave radio propaganda broadcasts.

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Freedom House assisted the post-Communist societies in the establishment of independent media, non-governmental think tanks, and the core institutions of electoral politics.

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In 1967, Freedom House absorbed Books USA, which had been created several years earlier by Edward R Murrow, as a joint venture between the Peace Corps and the United States Information Service.

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Since 2001, Freedom House has supported citizens involved in challenges to the existing regimes in Serbia, Ukraine, Kyrgyzstan, Egypt, Tunisia and elsewhere.

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The organization states, "From South Africa to Jordan, Kyrgyzstan to Indonesia, Freedom House has partnered with regional activists in bolstering civil society; worked to support women's rights; sought justice for victims of torture; defended journalists and free expression advocates; and assisted those struggling to promote human rights in challenging political environments.

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In 2001 Freedom House had income of around $11 million, increasing to over $26m in 2006.

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Freedom House is a nonprofit organization with approximately 150 staff members worldwide.

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Since 1972, Freedom House publishes an annual report, Freedom in the World, on the degree of democratic freedoms in nations and significant disputed territories around the world, by which it seeks to assess the current state of civil and political rights on a scale from 1 (most free) to 7 (least free).

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Freedom House produces annual reports on press freedom, governance in the nations of the former Soviet Union (Nations in Transit), and countries on the borderline of democracy (Countries at the Crossroads).

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Freedom House's methods and other democracy-researchers were mentioned as examples of an expert-based evaluation by sociologist Kenneth A Bollen, who is an applied statistician.

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Freedom House of the Press index was an annual survey of media independence, published between 1980 and 2017.

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Freedom House has produced more than 85 special reports since 2002, including:.

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Freedom House is a member of the International Freedom of Expression Exchange, a global network of more than 80 non-governmental organizations that monitors free expression violations around the world and defends journalists, writers and others who are persecuted for exercising their right to freedom of expression.

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Freedom House publishes the China Media Bulletin, a weekly analysis on press freedom in and related to the People's Republic of China.

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On 27 August 2013, Freedom House released their official iPhone app, which was created by British entrepreneur Joshua Browder.

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In 2006, the Financial Times reported that Freedom House had received funding by the State Department for "clandestine activities" inside Iran.

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The U S representative further argued that Freedom House was a human rights organization which sought to represent those who did not have a voice.

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Treisman cited that Freedom House ranks Russia's political rights on the same level as the United Arab Emirates, which is a federation of absolute monarchies with no element of democracy within the system.

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Treisman contrasts Freedom House's ranking with the Polity IV scale used by academics, in which Russia has a much better score.

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Craig Murray, the British ambassador to Uzbekistan from 2002 to 2004, wrote that the executive director of Freedom House told him in 2003 that the group decided to back off from its efforts to spotlight human rights abuses in Uzbekistan, because some Republican board members "expressed concern that Freedom House was failing to keep in sight the need to promote freedom in the widest sense, by giving full support to U S and coalition forces".

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Jennifer Windsor, the executive director of Freedom House in 2003, replied that Murray's "characterization of our conversation is an inexplicable misrepresentation not only of what was said at that meeting, but of Freedom House's record in Uzbekistan.

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Freedom House has been a consistent and harsh critic of the human rights situation in Uzbekistan, as clearly demonstrated in press releases and in our annual assessments of that country".

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Nonetheless, when evaluated on Latin American countries yearly, Freedom House's index was positively correlated with the index of Adam Przeworski and with the index of the authors themselves.

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However, according to Przeworski in 2003, the definition of freedom in Gastil and Freedom House (1990) emphasized liberties rather than the exercise of freedom.

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Freedom House gave the following example: In the United States, citizens are free to form political parties and to vote, yet even in presidential elections only half of U S citizens vote; in the U S, "the same two parties speak in a commercially sponsored unison".

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Freedom House writes that after 1989 the findings were not as strong but still hinted at political bias.

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