Centre for Internet & Society

The newsletter for the month of April can be accessed below:

We at the Centre for Internet & Society (CIS) welcome you to the fourth issue of the newsletter (April) for the year 2014. Archives of our newsletters can be accessed at: http://cis-india.org/about/newsletters

Highlights

We have published a compilation of the various central government schemes in a blog post as part of our National Resource Kit project.

  • The 27th session of the WIPO Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights (WIPO-SCCR) was held in Geneva from April 28 to May 2, 2014. Nehaa Chaudhari participated in the event. CIS made its statements on Technological Measures of Protection on Limitations and Exceptions for Libraries and Archives, Orphan Works, Retracted and Withdrawn Works, and Works out of Commerce on Limitations and Exceptions for Libraries and Archives, and on the WIPO Proposed Treaty for the Protection of Broadcasting Organizations.
  • CIS signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Mysore University for converting to Unicode and re-releasing their encyclopaedia under Creative Commons License. Dr. U.B. Pavanaja on behalf of the CIS-A2K team signed the MoU.
  • A two-day global stakeholder meeting on future of internet governance (NETmundial) was organized by the Brazilian Internet Steering Committee in partnership with /1Net at Sao Paulo in Brazil on April 23 and 24, 2014. Achal Prabhala participated in the event. As part of its research to enable productive discussions of the critical internet governance issues at the meeting and elsewhere CIS published a total of 16 blog entries.
  • We conducted an empirical study of five separate and diverse banks (State Bank of India, Central Bank of India, ICICI Bank, IndusInd Bank, and Standard Chartered Bank) to gain a practical perspective on the existing banking practices and policies in India, and published a Banking Policy Guide.
  • As part of the Making Change project Denisse Albornoz interviewed Tuhin Paul, an artist and storyteller behind Menstrupedia, an India-based social venture creating comics to shatter the myths and misunderstandings surrounding menstruation around the world. Denisse provides an analysis of ‘menstrual activism’ — a movement that despite its trajectory in feminism remains unnoticed in most accounts of traditional and digital activism.
  • Six research studies were commissioned by HEIRA-CSCS (over November 2013-March 2014) as part of the collaborative exercise with CIS to map the Digital Humanities within a broad rubric of exploring changes at the intersection of youth, technology and higher education in India. P.P.Sneha in her blog post presents a broad overview of some of the key learnings from these projects.


Jobs
CIS is seeking applications for the post of Programme Officer (Access to Knowledge). There are two vacancies for this post one in Delhi and one in Bangalore. To apply, please send your resume to Sunil Abraham (sunil@cis-india.org), Nirmita Narasimhan (nirmita@cis-india.org) and Pranesh Prakash (pranesh@cis-india.org) with three writing samples of which at least one demonstrates your analytic skills, and one that shows your ability to simplify complex policy issues.

Accessibility and Inclusion

Under a grant from the Hans Foundation we are doing two projects. The first project is on creating a national resource kit of state-wise laws, policies and programmes on issues relating to persons with disabilities in India. We compiled the first draft of the kit (29 states and 6 union territories). The chapters along with the quarterly reports can be accessed on the project page. The second project is on developing text-to-speech software for 15 Indian languages. The progress made so far in the project can be accessed here.

NVDA

Monthly Update

National Resource Kit

Blog Entry

Other

Blog Entry

Media Coverage

Access to Knowledge

As part of the Access to Knowledge programme we are doing two projects. The first one (Pervasive Technologies) under a grant from the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) is for research on the complex interplay between pervasive technologies and intellectual property to support intellectual property norms that encourage the proliferation and development of such technologies as a social good. The second one (Wikipedia) under a grant from the Wikimedia Foundation is for the growth of Indic language communities and projects by designing community collaborations and partnerships that recruit and cultivate new editors and explore innovative approaches to building projects.

WIPO SCCR

Participation in Events

Blog Entries

Media Coverage

Other

Event Organized

Blog Entries

Wikipedia

The following has been done under grant from the Wikimedia Foundation:

Announcement

  • CIS Signs MoU with Mysore University (by Dr. U.B.Pavanaja, April 16, 2014): for converting to Unicode and re-releasing their encyclopaedia under Creative Commons License. Dr. U.B. Pavanaja on behalf of the CIS-A2K team signed the MoU. The signing event took place earlier on February 22, 2014.

Articles

Events Organized

  • Tulu Wikipedia Workshop (organized by CIS-A2K, Balmatta Computer Centre, Mangalore, April 5, 2014). Dr. U.B.Pavanaja conducted the workshop.
  • Konkani Wikipedia Workshop (co-organized by All India Konkani Writers Organization and CIS-A2K, Kalaangann Shaktinagar, April 6, 2014). Dr. U.B.Pavanaja conducted the workshop.
  • Tulu Wikipedia Editathon (co-organized by Karnataka Theological College and CIS-A2K, Mangalore, April 19, 2014). Dr. U.B.Pavanaja conducted the workshop.

Participation in Events

Media Coverage
CIS gave its inputs to the following media coverage:

Internet Governance

As part of its research on privacy and free speech, CIS is engaged with two different projects. The first one (under a grant from Privacy International and International Development Research Centre (IDRC)) is on surveillance and freedom of expression (SAFEGUARDS). The second one (under a grant from MacArthur Foundation) is on studying the restrictions placed on freedom of expression online by the Indian government.

NETmundial

As part of its participation in the NETmundial event organized in Brazil by Brazilian Internet Steering Committee in partnership with /1Net at Sao Paulo on April 23 and 24, 2014 CIS produced a total of 16 outputs:

Privacy

Analyses

Articles

Blog Entry

Participation in Events

Other

Articles

News & Media Coverage

CIS gave its inputs to the following media coverage:

Digital Humanities

CIS is building research clusters in the field of Digital Humanities. The Digital will be used as a way of unpacking the debates in humanities and social sciences and look at the new frameworks, concepts and ideas that emerge in our engagement with the digital. The clusters aim to produce and document new conversations and debates that shape the contours of Digital Humanities in Asia:

Blog Entries

Digital Natives

CIS is doing a research project titled “Making Change”. The project will explore new ways of defining, locating, and understanding change in network societies. Having the thought piece 'Whose Change is it Anyway' as an entry point for discussion and reflection, the project will feature profiles, interviews and responses of change-makers to questions around current mechanisms and practices of change in South Asia and South East Asia:

Making Change Project

Blog Entry

Telecom

CIS is involved in promoting access and accessibility to telecommunications services and resources and has provided inputs to ongoing policy discussions and consultation papers published by TRAI. It has prepared reports on unlicensed spectrum and accessibility of mobile phones for persons with disabilities and also works with the USOF to include funding projects for persons with disabilities in its mandate:

Event Organized

About CIS

The Centre for Internet and Society is a non-profit research organization that works on policy issues relating to freedom of expression, privacy, accessibility for persons with disabilities, access to knowledge and IPR reform, and openness (including open government, FOSS, open standards, etc.), and engages in academic research on digital natives and digital humanities.

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Please help us defend consumer / citizen rights on the Internet! Write a cheque in favour of ‘The Centre for Internet and Society’ and mail it to us at No. 194, 2nd ‘C’ Cross, Domlur, 2nd Stage, Bengaluru – 5600 71.

► Request for Collaboration:
We invite researchers, practitioners, and theoreticians, both organisationally and as individuals, to collaboratively engage with Internet and society and improve our understanding of this new field. To discuss the research collaborations, write to Sunil Abraham, Executive Director, at sunil@cis-india.org or Nishant Shah, Director – Research, at nishant@cis-india.org. To discuss collaborations on Indic language Wikipedia, write to T. Vishnu Vardhan, Programme Director, A2K, at vishnu@cis-india.org.


CIS is grateful to its primary donor the Kusuma Trust founded by Anurag Dikshit and Soma Pujari, philanthropists of Indian origin for its core funding and support for most of its projects. CIS is also grateful to its other donors, Wikimedia Foundation, Ford Foundation, Privacy International, UK, Hans Foundation, MacArthur Foundation, and IDRC for funding its various projects.