Our worlds are increasingly networked and our personal data collected left, right and centre. Ask anyone who has to use a biometric identity card like Malaysian Jac sm Kee who has to give her ID number even if she’s just buying movie tickets online. We can be sure much of the information collected about us online is not that securely warehoused. So what needs to be done to protect our right to privacy online? And what about our own circle? If a boyfriend broadcasts an intimate photo via mobile phone, what then? Jac argues that in the digital age, personal data is no longer just our property, it has become part of who we are. What will be key in the future will be for us to have as much control as possible over our personal data — and that control should be based on “consent” rather than “protection of privacy”.
Research coming out of the UK shows that British children are blasé about putting sexy images of themselves online. But some adults in governments and industry are intent on seeing children as victims where sexuality and the internet is concerned. Why on earth aren’t the powers-that-be actually listening to kids? asks Maya Ganesh reporting from the IGF.
In 2003, APC launched our first ICT policy handbook “for beginners” to critical acclaim. ICT policy was a relatively new area and very few really understood what was actually involved. The APC handbook was the first comprehensive guide for non-technicians. Now APC has published an entirely rewritten second edition free and online for anyone to download.
A new report that reveals how vulnerable the internet as we know it is, has just been published by two global civil society organisations. The annual report, called Global Information Society Watch (GISWatch), was released today by APC and Dutch funder Hivos. GISWatch 2009 is entitled “Access to online information and knowledge – advancing human rights and democracy”.
Draft text (11/2009): Code of good practice on information, participation and transparency in Internet governance
The imminent arrival of broadband in Rwanda has exposed a policy vacuum that desperately needs to be filled if the poor in the country are going to benefit from the information society. Having good plans is not enough, argue Emmanuel Habumuremyi and Alan Finlay.
The new Constitution of Ecuador, which was passed in October of 2008, now legitimises the use of wireless networks as a way to achieve universal access. In the debate leading up to the new constitution, the wireless networks were able to boast low cost, sustainability and using existing and free waves to the communities and organisations using them. In an attempt to connect paper to practice, APC conducted a study on the possibilities and the political and regulatory context of this type of network, and explore a few success stories that took place over the last few years.
How do we ensure access to the internet is a human right enjoyed by everyone? This is one of the critical questions asked by an annual publication that highlights the importance of people’s access to information and communications technology (ICT) infrastructure – and where and how countries are getting it right or wrong, and what can be done about it.