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This week, the Human Rights Foundation (HRF) will be in Austin, Texas, for the 2024 South by Southwest (SXSW) conference.

Each year, SXSW brings together creatives and industry leaders for 10 days of discovery across various events, including sessions, music and comedy showcases, film screenings, exhibitions, and networking opportunities. HRF is thrilled to bring human rights to the forefront of discussions with a panel discussion, expo booth, and evening reception. Come find us this Saturday, March 9, through Wednesday, March 13!


Documenting Conflict Zones: Photojournalists vs. Influencers

Documenting conflict zones is not a new phenomenon, but the ethics of this are increasingly coming into focus. Photojournalists are on the frontlines, documenting atrocities to inform the world of a dictator’s abuses, while dictators welcome influencers to paint a false picture of the state of the countries they rule with an iron fist.

HRF’s panel, Documenting Conflict Zones: Photojournalists vs. Influencers, will explore the question: How can we ensure that the general public can decipher between the reality of conflict zones and human rights violations versus influencers’ white-washed portrayal of the situation?


Saturday, March 9

10:00 to 11:00 a.m. CT

Hilton Austin Downtown, Salon B

Picture It: Destination Unfiltered

Authoritarian regimes are increasingly using the allure of their country’s natural beauty, infrastructure, history, and culture to generate tourism and whitewash their human rights abuses. They spend countless dollars on marketing and social media campaigns to convince tourists to visit and post pictures, slowly changing the public perception of their country.

HRF combats this narrative through its booth, Picture It: Destination Unfiltered. Visitors are invited to look beyond the postcard-perfect façade and witness the harsh reality of dictatorships. HRF provides prospective tourists with the tools to become conscious travelers, aware of the struggles of living under an authoritarian regime.

Sunday, March 10 to Wednesday, March 13

9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. CT

SXSW Creative Industries Expo, Booth #547

Annual HRF Reception

If you are based in Austin or will be attending SXSW, we invite you to join us for HRF’s annual SXSW reception on Sunday, March 10, from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. at Truluck’s in downtown Austin, a short nine-minute walk from the main conference venue.


Enjoy refreshments, light bites, and conversations with HRF staff and its community of human rights defenders, and learn more about HRF’s efforts to challenge authoritarianism and advance democracy globally. Our event is now full, but you may RSVP to be added to the waitlist.

Sunday, March 10

5:00 to 7:00 p.m. CT

Truluck’s, 300 Colorado St.