ICT policy

Open letter to request strong user privacy protections in the Philippines’ COVID-19 contact tracing efforts
Open letter to request strong user privacy protections in the Philippines’ COVID-19 contact tracing efforts 13 July 2020 Various

The Philippine government has launched an exposure notification application, StaySafe.ph, which aims to contain the pandemic in the country. While the effort is commendable, the importance of combating COVID-19 while protecting people’s individual freedoms cannot be emphasised enough.

Media Matters for Democracy expresses concern over students' lack of internet access for online education
Media Matters for Democracy expresses concern over students' lack of internet access for online education 13 July 2020 Media Matters for Democracy

Students are facing infrastructural challenges in attending online classes, which are mandatory. The unavailability of quality access to the internet is causing massive challenges for students who are solely dependent on online platforms for education during COVID-19.

Digital-shy Zimbabwe’s schools feel the brunt of COVID-19
Digital-shy Zimbabwe’s schools feel the brunt of COVID-19 30 June 2020 Kenneth Matimaire

The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed how citizens become vulnerable when governments do not protect and promote human rights in the online environment. The pandemic has critically affected the global education sector, potentially compromising the right to education.

A provisional analysis of the impact of telecommunications policy and regulatory frameworks in Africa and COVID-19: A community networks perspective
A provisional analysis of the impact of telecommunications policy and regulatory frameworks in Africa and COVID-19: A community networks perspective 30 June 2020 Josephine Miliza

This article seeks to examine the extent to which national and regional responses to the COVID-19 pandemic may have impacted on the regime of human rights online. The article also examines the widening digital divide and the role that telecommunication policy and regulatory frameworks play in closing this gap.

Joint submission to the Ethiopian Communications Authority on draft telecommunications licensing regulations
Joint submission to the Ethiopian Communications Authority on draft telecommunications licensing regulations 30 June 2020 Various

On 17 June 2020, APC collaborated with other organisations to submit a contribution to the draft Telecommunications Licensing Directive No. 1/2020. In the contribution, we recommend the Ethiopian Communications Authority consider international recommendations, as well as best practices in other countries both regionally and globally.

Reflections on COVID-19 policy responses in Uganda and the relevance of the African declaration on internet rights and freedoms for promoting women’s rights online
Reflections on COVID-19 policy responses in Uganda and the relevance of the African declaration on internet rights and freedoms for promoting women’s rights online 29 June 2020 Amuku Isaac

The COVID-19 pandemic has shown why the protection of human rights online is more important now than ever before. The internet has been a gateway for access to critical information, services and opportunities available to many people for the first time, as noted by the GSMA mobile gender gap report.

Mask or muzzle: The impact of COVID-19 measures on digital rights in Kenya
Mask or muzzle: The impact of COVID-19 measures on digital rights in Kenya 29 June 2020 Francis Monyango

Upon the confirmation of the first COVID-19 case in Kenya, the government enacted various legislation to deal with the pandemic. While the measures were well intended, the manner in which existing laws have been implemented has caused some concern among civil society organisations.

Rights organisation VOICE calls on Bangladeshi government to scrap repressive Digital Security Act
Rights organisation VOICE calls on Bangladeshi government to scrap repressive Digital Security Act 28 June 2020 VOICE

Rights and advocacy organisation VOICE expresses deep concern over the arrest of journalists, online activists, teachers, students, writers and cartoonists, among others, under the Digital Security Act 2018, and urges the Bangaldeshi government to scrap the law.

Engage Media's Pretty Good Podcast: Discussions on digital rights in Asia-Pacific
Engage Media's Pretty Good Podcast: Discussions on digital rights in Asia-Pacific 25 June 2020 Sara Pacia for EngageMedia

The second episode of Pretty Good Podcast delves deeper into the Philippine court cyber libel ruling against journalists Maria Ressa and Reynaldo Santos Jr. of Rappler, a Philippine news organisation known to be critical of incumbent President Rodrigo Duterte.

Compulsory e-learning in Namibia’s public schools: A commendable idea marred by the digital divide?
Compulsory e-learning in Namibia’s public schools: A commendable idea marred by the digital divide? 24 June 2020 Nashilongo Gervasius

Cracks within the Namibian education system have been exposed by COVID-19, and the detrimental effects they pose to the right to development and access to knowledge, as set out in Principle 7 of the African Declaration on Internet Rights and Freedoms, have increasingly become apparent.

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