Mahsa is a DPhil student at the OII. Her research focuses on political communication and information controls in Iran.
Mahsa Alimardani is a student on the DPhil in Information, Communication & the Social Sciences.
Mahsa is an Internet researcher focusing on freedom of expression and access to information online in Iran. Her research aims to understands communications ecologies within Iran’s information control space. Mahsa has worked on digital rights on Iran since 2012, in various capacities within civil society. She does research on freedom of expression online in the MENA region with the human rights organisation ARTICLE19. Mahsa is also a Senior Information Control Fellow with the Open Technology Institute, and a Graduate Resident of the Bonavero Institute of Human Rights.
Telegram; Social media; social movements; information controls; censorship; surveillance; MENA; Iran; digital activism.
Supervisors at the OII
- (2021) Digital Orientalism: #SaveSheikhJarrah and Arabic Content Moderation.
- (2020) "Online Temptations: COVID-19 and Religious Misinformation in the MENA Region", Social Media + Society. 6 (3) 205630512094825.
- (2020) Iranian Media: Centralised Control and Tattered Accountability.
- (2020) "Trust, Religion, and Politics: Coronavirus Misinformation in Iran", SSRN Electronic Journal.
- (2017) "The Internet as a Global/Local Site of Contestation: The Case of Iran", GLOBAL CULTURES OF CONTESTATION: MOBILITY, SUSTAINABILITY, AESTHETICS & CONNECTIVITY. 171-192.
12 October 2020
Authors: Mahsa Alimardani, Mona Elswah
As two scholars who’ve spent a lot of time studying and within the MENA region, we’re proud to know Emna Mizouni. She’s long been ...
5 August 2020
Authors: Mona Elswah, Mahsa Alimardani
Oxford doctoral candidates Mahsa Alimardani and Mona Elswah present the case for how the new phenomenon of ‘religious misinformation’ is adding to the Covid-19 ...
24 June 2020
Authors: Mahsa Alimardani, Mona Elswah
We are delighted to have contributed with a new chapter to Meedan’s 2020 Misinfodemic Report: COVID-19 in Emerging Economies. The chapter focuses on misinformation ...
12 October 2021 Al Jazeera
Outages, leaks and bad headlines: Facebook's nightmare week
17 June 2021 BBC News
Iranians will choose a new president on Friday, after three years of economic hardship under reimposed US sanctions and two government crackdowns on nationwide protests.
29 April 2021 Wall Street Journal
While China and other countries fence off foreign social-media sites, Tehran tries to use them to its advantage
2 February 2021 The Washington Post
On an average day, Twitter accounts linked to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran's supreme leader, share his official statements and commentary with hundreds of thousands of followers on the U.S. social network.
26 January 2021 Al Jazeera
Tehran, Iran – Iran’s government has moved to block Signal after Iranians flocked to the messaging platform following privacy concerns from Facebook-owned WhatsApp.
18 November 2020 Wired
A deepfake bot has been generating explicit, non-consensual images on the platform. The researchers who found it say their warnings have been ignored.
20 July 2020 The Wall Street Journal
Tehran bowed to intense pressure on the nation’s social media to spare participants in November demonstrations.
28 June 2020 The Washington Post
Telegram founder Pavel Durov used cyber-dodging tactics and the messaging app’s reach to outmanoeuvre Russia’s state telecommunications regulator.
23 June 2020 Deutsche Welle
Iranian authorities are reportedly mulling a ban on Instagram, a popular social media platform in the Islamic country. DW analyzes why the hardline Shiite regime continues to feel threatened by the power of the internet.
17 April 2020 BNN Bloomberg
Last month, Bob Diachenko came across an unsecured server storing information on 42 million messaging accounts.
‘A cyberattack should be expected’: U.S. strike on Iranian leader sparks fears of major digital disruption
3 January 2020 Washington Post
Iran’s cyber troops long have been among the world’s most capable and aggressive, disrupting banking, hacking oil companies, even trying to take control of a dam from afar, while typically stopping short of the most crippling possible actions, say experts
14 December 2019 Al Jazeera
From Kashmir to Iran, governments are turning off the internet to stop dissent. Plus, the murky world of deepfakes.
13 December 2019 The Telegraph
Pouya Bakhtiari could barely contain his excitement as he sat in gridlocked traffic on the motorway between Tehran and his home city of Karaj.
21 November 2019 Associated Press
Internet connectivity is trickling back in Iran after the government shut down access to the rest of the world for more than four days in response to unrest apparently triggered by a gasoline price hike.
19 November 2019 New York Times
The almost complete shutdown imposed over the weekend sets a new oppressive benchmark.
18 October 2019 Sky News
The arrest of a high-profile dissident and the seizure of his anti-government Telegram channel is a 'PR coup' for the regime.
12 June 2019 The Independent
Iran is to launch a text-messaging service to allow self-appointed guardians of morality in Tehran to turn in their neighbours or strangers for violating murky codes of public conduct, officials have said.
12 June 2019 What Bitcoin did
Latest panel debate from the OFF discussing the effects of the currency crisis on the Iranian internet and the effects of cryptocurrencies like bitcoin on internet access and use.
11 June 2019 Newsweek
Iran’s government is urging its citizens to use text messages to report on their neighbours or on strangers if they believe they are guilty of violating the country’s code of conduct.
20 December 2018 Motherboard
An Iranian academic says Slack banned him from the communication platform due to US sanctions. But the academic does not live in Iran; he’s in Canada.
9 November 2018 The Guardian
Jordan Erica Webber chats to the Iranian internet researcher Mahsa Alimardani about what we should be doing to rebuild trust in the internet.
When governments censor websites and block messaging apps like Telegram, here’s where to turn for proof
11 May 2018 CBC
Data collected by watchdog Open Observatory of Network Interference is helping hold governments to account.
18 April 2018 The Verge
Khamenei made the announcement on his Telegram channel
14 January 2018 BBC Click
Iran internet crackdown; commentary by Mahsa Alimardani.
10 January 2018 Newsweek
Iranian authorities shut down social media channels and disrupted internet access as protests against the government spread across the country over the past two weeks.
9 January 2018 Vice
Iranians hit the streets again today — on the sixth day of volatile protests that have quickly spread across the country.
9 January 2018 Vice Motherboard
Psiphon, a Toronto-born app, has seen a 1,650% increase in downloads.
8 January 2018 Wikitribune
Iran blocked the popular messaging app Telegram, which many Iranians use to communicate, during ongoing nationwide protests.
4 January 2018 CBC
Telegram is the platform of choice but protesters turn to backdoor software and private networks
3 January 2018 CBC: The Current
Images of the unrest in Iran have spread across the world in recent days, but what does it feel like to actually be there, in the chaos and violence on the streets?
2 January 2018 CBC: The National
Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei says Iran's enemies are to blame for the violence that has taken over the country.
2 January 2018 Channel 4
Across Iran, thousands of people have been on the streets of major cities again today.
1 January 2018 Vice Motherboard
Reports say mobile services like Telegram have been shut down as protests continue across the country.
1 January 2018 Politico Magazine
Never in history has a protest movement depended so much on one technological platform. Will the company use its power wisely?
27 December 2017 media.ccc.de
The Situation of Censorship and Surveillance in Iran, and What Should Be Done