//The aim of this research study is to investigate in-depth the links between internet usage and public perception towards internet censorship and policymaking in Pakistan. Defending the right to freedom of expression has been a long standing tradition in many developed countries, but that has not always been the case in many developing countries where government restrictions on all traditional media are often accepted as a part of life. However, with many Pakistanis getting access to the internet for the first time and becoming connected to a global community, things may be beginning to change. Evidence from the Global South suggests that as a country’s population becomes increasingly connected to the Web, there is growing support for ending government controls and censorship. It is the aim of this project to thoroughly investigate these assumptions and uncover what demand exists for internet freedom and other internet policies.
Welcome to the second African Internet Policy & Media Law Roundup compiled by Ephraim Percy Kenyanito. This edition of the roundup explores notable events affecting, or affected by, African internet policies and media laws from May through July 2014. Part one of this series on analysis of notable events affecting, or affected by, African internet policies and media laws is available here.
Strategic plans towards harmonization of ICT policies and regulations in Africa: During the fifth meeting of the heads of the ICT Units at the African Union Commission (AUC), the New Partnership for Africa Development (NEPAD), Regional Economic Communities (RECs), and Associations of Regulators on Harmonization and Coordination of Regional and Continental ICT Programs, Projects and Activities all adopted a strategic plan, the “Continental ICT Strategy for Africa (CISA), for development up to 2024.” The plan emphasized the following areas: post and telecom infrastructure, capacity development, e-applications and services, enabling environment and governance, mobilization of resources and partnerships, industrialization, and research and development.
The month of May also saw the African Telecommunications Union present a draft strategic plan for 2014-2018 to its members. This plan emphasized the promotion of an optical fiber-based system and other infrastructure developments, innovation, and locally-created apps aimed at enhancing economic productivity in agriculture, livestock, and other fields.
Nearly 1/3 of African countries in the bottom 10% of the world rankings in a bi-annual UN E-Government Survey: The UN E-Government Survey assesses levels of digital interactions between the government and citizens, government agencies, government employees, and the private sector. This is important, as E-Government lowers the cost of the provision of services in a transparent government environment. The Surveyfound that Kenya, Tunisia, Morocco, and Ghana are the only African countries with an open government data portal, a database of government data such as…
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iPOP, the Internet Policy Observatory Pakistan, was established by IPO Affiliate Arzak Khan and his team. iPOP’s purpose is to conduct research on ICT policy and regulation in Pakistan and provide stakeholders across sectors “with the information and analysis required to develop innovative and appropriate policies for modern age digital technologies.”
iPOP’s key focus areas include: Society and Internet; Freedom of Expression and Censorship; Broadband Access; and Cyber Security. Over the recent months, iPOP joined the Global Net Neutrality Coalition, hosted a number of internet policy events, built its social media base, and actively posted content online. On November 22nd, iPOP will host an event titled Women’s Privacy and Security on Social Media, which seeks to train and help develop participants’ skills in managing digital security and privacy online and offline.
To learn more about iPOP please visit http://ipop.org.pk/
Yaman Akdeniz and Kerem Altiparmak explain their decision to boycott the 2014 Internet Governance Forum. This letter was originally posted on Cyber-Rights.Org and can be accessed here.
The objective of each annual IGF programme is to maximize the opportunity for open and inclusive dialogue and the exchange of idea; to build capacities amongst all stakeholders and benefit from the multi-stakeholder perspective of the IGF. The 2003 WSIS Geneva Declaration on Principles reaffirms “as an essential foundation of the Information Society, and as outlined in Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, that everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; that this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers”.
The Ninth Annual Internet Governance Forum (“IGF”) Meeting will be held in Istanbul, Turkey on 2-5 September 2014. Let us briefly explain why we decided to boycott IGF…