Tactical Tech and APC-member Women’sNet are pleased to announce the web launch of the latest edition of NGO-in-a-box, the BaseBox. The BaseBox is a collection of tools for the day-to-day running of small to medium sized NGOs. It aims to make it easier to set up base, find the right software and learn how to use it. Targeted primarily at activist and advocacy organisations in developing countries, the BaseBox contains a set of peer-reviewed free and open source software tools, with associated guides and tutorials. The edition can be accessed online but it’s primary form is as a physical box set of CDs.
The first regional workshop on capacity building in community wireless networking will take place between July 16 and 21 in the Huaral City of Peru. Organised by APC members, APC and partners, 29 people – ten of which are women – from Colombia, Peru, Ecuador, Venezuela and Bolivia will meet with the objective of extending the community wireless connectivity model to the Andean zone. Their names have recently been announced.
Democratising Global Communication? This is a question asked by Milton L. Mueller and colleagues at US-based universities in a report published in IJOC, the International Journal of Communication. Scrutinising the role played by global civil society at the World Summit on the Information Society, the authors insist on the centrality of APC, and conclude that “There is no doubt that WSIS was a more substantive, inclusive and meaningful exercise in global governance, because of the civil society mobilisation pioneered by [the] CRIS [Campaign] and managed so impressively by APC.” Read the 31-page report.
In the article “Firms Race to Update E. Africa Telecom”, published in the New York Times’ June 3 edition, APC researcher Abiodun Jagun is quoted for her stakeholder analysis of the EASSy submarine cable. The article is about the undersea fiber-optic cables meant to connect Eastern Africa. Jagun’s analysis was originally published in the APC Africa Policy Monitor in February 2007.
With about 90 active volunteers over the years, Île Sans Fil now has managed to install some 130 hotspots all around town, using a nice piece of software. Wifidog is an open source solution designed primarily for wireless community groups, it is now in use in more than 36 locations, including at the municipality of Rosario (Argentina), the Tegucigalpa technical university (Honduras) or the Hull libraries (United Kingdom). Can Wifidog work in the developing world? Interview with the key figure of the group, Michael Lenczner.
“This is a technology that works, a proven technology, and what it needs is a bit more promotion,” said Ermanno Pietrosemoli just days after reaching a new wireless connection record of 382 kilometres. The president of Venezuelan APC member EsLaRed spoke with APCNews by conference call about this low-cost solution that is impacting the world’s rural communities.
The full text of the Korea-US free trade agreement (FTA) was made public last Friday. "It has many poisonous articles in there," argues PatchA of APC’s Korean member Jinbonet. Especially the chapter on intellectual property rights worry people working on copyright issues. This could set a precedent for many other countries. The far-reaching consequences are now clearer than ever.
Remarks from APC addressing agenda items 2 and 3 of the Commission for Science and Technology for Development
The Commission for Science and Technology for Development is one of UN bodies that coordinate World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) follow-up. The tenth session of the Commission has held from 21-25 May 2007 in Geneva, Switzerland. It focused on “the follow-up to the outcome of WSIS at the regional and international level, to identify achievements, gaps and challenges, as well as future action needed to further implementation”. APC was there, and submitted concrete proposals to ensure meaningful inclusion of voices of the people most impacted by the digital divide.
Viva Network sees effective networking among Christian organisations as a stepping-stone to making a difference for the children of the world. Its focus on networking training, governance, and facilitation makes Viva Network a perfect example of the benefits of collaborative effort – just what the Harambee Small Grants Facility was founded to support.
“The enthusiasm in various government sectors about information and communication technologies is incredible, as is the way it is getting onto the agenda of women in politics,” remarked Dafne Sabanes Plou, of the APC women’s programme, commenting on a national gathering of Argentine women mayors and councilwomen held in Buenos Aires at the end of April.
The first telecentres in Congo with internet access date back to 1999-2000, also offering a range of other services such as computerisation of documents, printing, photocopying, document scanning, CD burning, telephone calls and training in various areas.
The Commission for Science and Technology for Development is one of a few UN bodies that coordinate the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) follow-up. The tenth session of the Commission was held from 21-25 May 2007 in Geneva, Switzerland. It focused on “the follow-up to the outcome of WSIS at the regional and international level, to identify achievements, gaps and challenges, as well as future action needed to further implementation”. APC was there, and submitted concrete proposals to ensure meaningful inclusion of voices of the people most impacted by the digital divide.
Read the APC input to the IGF open consultation meeting held on 23 May in Geneva, as well as reactions from different stakeholders. APC makes practical recommendations to ensure the accomplishment of the IGF’s mandate and to strengthen it as a truly space for multistakeholder dialogue.
A cluster of World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) implementation meetings is taking place in Geneva from May 14 to 25. Part of the APC crew is there, ensuring that “the strong development orientation” promised by organising agencies goes beyond paper. Read APC input to the informal consultation between the International Communication Union and civil society on the participation of all relevant stakeholders.
Fifty-three percent of participants to wireless internet trainings in Africa have installed one or more wireless networks since the training. This is what a survey about the impact of the APC-led ‘Capacity Building for Community Wireless Connectivity in Africa’ project reveals.
WebSining is the Filipino name for a web-art contest, and this is what has been keeping the Manila-based Foundation for Media Alternatives busy of late. With its goal of encouraging artistic innovations in the intersection of art and technology, Websining this year introduced a new category: software art.
A cluster of World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) implementation meetings is taking place in Geneva from May 14 to 25. Part of the APC crew is there, ensuring that “the strong development orientation” promised by organising agencies goes beyond paper. Themes and action lines stemming from agreed-upon documents are being discussed. Read APC’s input to three action lines that took place as part of a meeting on May 16.
A new watchdog report from APC and the Third World Institute monitoring promises made by governments and the United Nations to ensure that information technology is used to benefit millions of people, was launched in Geneva on May 22. Studies of the ICT policy situation in twenty-two countries from four regions are featured: Africa (Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa and Uganda); Asia (Bangladesh, India, Pakistan and the Philippines); Latin America (Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico and Peru); and Eastern Europe (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia and Romania), with one report from a Western European country (Spain).
From ‘cyberprotests’ to debates about whether cyberspace can be controlled or censored. From studying the long history of the collaborative creation of knowledge to looking closely at the social impact of mobile communications. These themes are all the focus of new books that have been published in recent months.
Technology put in the public information and communication domain (internet) can bring transparency to government behaviour, argues a high-profile forum that has just come to a close in Brasov, Romania. eLibretica, organised by the Romanian Open Source and Free Software Initiative and Agora Media and held at the end of May 2007 did not go unnoticed in the new European Union member country, reports Mihály Bakó of APC’s romanian member StrawberryNet Foundation [in Romanian].