There is a digital crisis in Venezuela combining a lack of infrastructure with surveillance and severe control of information online. Amidst the siege, civil society is mounting a resistance to keep the digital realm and information flow free and alive.
With the support of an APC subgrant, Venezuelan member organisation EsLaRed developed a training platform to help foster the use of open technologies in teaching and learning processes, an area that has been little explored in the country until now.
Concerned about how digital technologies bring new challenges to fighting censorship, APC member EsLaRed has been defending access to information and freedom of expression in restrictive environments, with a recent study focusing on communication blockades in Venezuela.
Since mid-2016, the government has implemented a series of economic, social and political measures under the state of emergency enacted by Presidential Decree No. 2323, of 13 May 2016. In particular, the right of access to the internet, the right to freedom of expression and the right to privacy in Venezuela may be violated because of this Decree.
APC’s subgranting programme in its second year awarded a total of USD 273,986 to support its members in achieving APC’s vision. Eighteen member organisations were recipients of 21 grants, and funds were also used to support the research for 28 national GISWatch 2017 reports.
“We have been continuously involved in training a group of 4,000 technical experts, here in Latin America,” says Sandra Benítez proudly. She is part of Escuela Latinoamericana de Redes (EsLaRed), an APC member in Venezuela. Interviewed by APCNews, Benítez talks about the major achievements of APC in the past 25 years, and the ways in which the network has promoted collaboration am...
APC’s efforts to ensure affordable and equitable internet access focus significantly on radio spectrum. While use of wireless internet, particularly through mobile devices, is growing exponentially in the developing world, access to reliable and affordable broadband continues to be a challenge, especially for remote and rural locations. Open, development-oriented spectrum management has great...
In Venezuela, community uses of the spectrum are privileged at the cost of generating uncertainty in the private sector. This discourages major investments in telecommunications and a wider discussion of the subject, according to Sandra Benítez and Ermanno Pietrosemoli of EsLaRed in this interview with APC.
Venezuela’s socialist development model has brought about significant changes favouring the democratisation of spectrum say Sandra Benítez and Ermanno Pietrosemoli in a new study for APC. But doubts remain about who will loosen the private sector’s grip on the sector. Civil society plays a key watchdog role to ensure that the steps taken benefit the state, rather than the governme...