In this column we're highlighting stories of impact and change by our members, supported by APC subgranting. Colnodo made meaningful contributions to the community networks movement by supporting three such initiatives in Colombia while strengthening its own strategy.
Karisma, FLIP, ILEX, CEJIL, IFEX, Derechos Digitales and APC urge the Human Rights Council to call on the Colombian state to guarantee, respect and protect the exercise of human rights online and offline in the country.
We firmly reject the violent repression in Colombia in response to the massive protests which began on 28 April. The Colombian state has the obligation to adopt the necessary measures to guarantee freedom of assembly and association and freedom of speech, on the internet and on the streets.
Most of the spectrum sharing to date has focused on TV white spaces, and extending it to the IMT bands, those used for mobile broadband, and hence being able to reach users' handsets, is a major advance in the advocacy work that Colnodo has been leading in Colombia for this to happen.
The “digital divide” in Colombia is particularly wide in rural communities, since service coverage, especially cellular mobile service, is concentrated in urban centres. In 2017, communities in the municipality of Buenos Aires began planning and developing their own communications network.
Thanks to support through an APC subgrant, Rhizomatica was able to support a number of emerging initiatives in Brazil and Colombia regarding community cellular networks. These are basically community-based networks that use 2G cellular technology as a way to facilitate communication between people.
Between 22 April and 3 May 2013, the UN Human Rights Council held the 16th session of its Universal Periodic Review. APC, together with its members and partners, developed submissions for the inclusion of internet-related human rights issues in the recommendations made for the reviews of Azerbaijan, Cameroon, Canada and Colombia.
The Cyber Stewards network organised a meeting that took place on 17-18 March 2013. APC member Colnodo took part in a workshop at the meeting, themed “Governance without government in cyberspace?” Colnodo’s participation in the network strengthens Colnodo’s work in the “End violence: Women’s rights and safety online” project in Colombia.
Management of the spectrum in Colombia is migrating towards a more flexible and participatory model. Nevertheless there is still a need for greater involvement of community media and social organisations as a counterweight to the voice of the commercial operators in discussions on the management of the spectrum, according to Lilian Chamorro of Colnodo, in this interview with APC.
In Colombia, several government initiatives aim at broadening telecommunications access for the whole population through spectrum. Colombian civil society should make the most of recent opportunities to lobby for the design of a management model that is more efficient and that emphasises the social value of the spectrum say Lilian Chamorro and Ariel Barbosa, authors of a new stud...