Training African community technicians to set up wireless internet access points, making the case for women’s involvement in technology policy, convincing the world’s governments that the internet should be considered a global public good. 2004 was another busy year for APC.
Groklaw, the web site, created and edited by Pamela "PJ" Jones, begun as an experiment in applying Open Source principles to legal research, is reporting the manipulation in Austria of the process that led to the Source: APC ICT Policy Handbook and APC Annual Report 2005.">WSIS.
During the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) in Tunis, one of my trips brought me to the Austrian booth in order to pick up some copies of the Vienna Conclusions to spread and advertise. When flipping through the text, I was quite shocked to find references to Free Software removed and a pro-DRM statement inserted in the findings of the "Digital Rights/Creative Commons" workshop ("To ensure ongoing innovation, Digital Rights Management (DRM) development and deployment must remain voluntary and market-driven."). Also, references to the cultural and social significance of software as "digital cultural technique" were watered down.
I am left alone in the Hotel Amilcar -- what does Amilcar means, I wonder... guess everybody had some other things to find out about last week -- moved to a new room as the whole wing is empty now and they turn off the water and the electricity. Feeling depressed, suspended between my default location and the Source: APC ICT Policy Handbook and APC Annual Report 2005.">WSIShype with the nice APC faces.
So WSIS creates a new digital divide, those who could afford to participate either on public money or private money and those who cannot afford to participate.
Looking back at the roots of the Digital Solidarity Fund, the responses it evoked, and the linked story of missed opportunities and promises that can still be worked out.
Free, as in free speech... not free beer -- that's the message of those campaigning against proprietorial software. But what happens when the issue transforms into 'free as in tee-shirts'? And, no. We're not talking about the Ubuntu approach here -- which not only offers you free CDs, but free shipping as well... if you know where to get it from.
Felix says "it is nice to see so many technologies here, but I don’t think we will ever have this in Bolivia, much less in our communities”. He thinks a bit and then adds, "This summit is incommunicado, in Bolivia people go to telecentres and connect to the Source: TechSoup Glossary and GenderIT.org">internetthere. Here everyone has a laptop and connects that way. Those of us that don't have one cannot connect and send information to our radio stations -- which is my case. On the other hand, here everyone speaks English, so language is another limitation."
APC launched our new-look Africa ICT Policy Monitor website in French on the final day of the World Summit on the Information Society in Tunisia.