August 2013 Bulletin
Our newsletter for the month of August 2013 can be accessed below.
The Centre for Internet & Society (CIS) welcomes you to the eighth issue of its newsletter for the year 2013. In this issue we are glad to bring you the final report on banking and accessibility submitted to the Ministry of Finance, Government of India, a research paper on India’s obligations under bilateral investment treaties, a report from a Wikipedia workshop held at the Konkani Department in Goa University, a report on the sixth privacy roundtable held in New Delhi, recent news coverage, and updates on our upcoming events.
CIS is inviting applications for the posts of Developer (NVDA Screen Reader Project). To apply for this post, send in your resume to Nirmita Narasimhan (firstname.lastname@example.org). CIS is also seeking applications for the post of Policy Associate (Internet Governance). To apply send your resume to Sunil Abraham (email@example.com) and Pranesh Prakash (firstname.lastname@example.org).
As part of its project on creating a national resource kit of state-wise laws, policies and programmes on issues relating to persons with disabilities in India with the Hans Foundation, we bring you three new draft chapters on Assam, Manipur and Puducherry. With this we have completed compilation of draft chapters for 21 states and 3 union territories. Feedback and comments are invited from readers for the below chapters:
- The Assam Chapter (by CLPR, August 28, 2013)
- The Manipur Chapter (by CLPR, August 29, 2013)
- The Puducherry Chapter (by Anandhi Viswanathan, August 31, 2013)
Note: All the chapters published on the website are early drafts and will be reviewed and updated.
- Banking and Accessibility in India: A Report by CIS (by Vrinda Maheshwari, August 12, 2013). This is the final report submitted to the Ministry of Finance, Government of India.
- Opening New Avenues for Empowerment (by UNESCO, August 31, 2013). UNESCO has published a global report on higher education titled “Opening New Avenues for Empowerment”. Nirmita Narasimhan was the coordinating author for the Asia Pacific region.
As part of its project on developing the growth of Indic language communities with Wikimedia Foundation, CIS-A2K held six Wikipedia workshops. CIS is also doing a project (Pervasive Technologies) on examining the relationship between production of pervasive technologies and intellectual property. CIS also promotes openness including open government data, open standards, open access, and free/libre/open source software through its Openness programme.
Access to Knowledge
- India's Obligations under Bilateral Investment Treaties (Part A): “Bilateral Inhibiting Treaty?” — Investigating the Challenges that Bilateral Investment Treaties pose to the Compulsory Licensing of Pervasive Technology Patent Pools (by Gavin Pereira, August 31, 2013).
- Copyrights and Copywrongs Why the Government Should Embrace the Public Domain (by Pranesh Prakash, Yojana, Issue: August 2013).
- Dictionary words in software patent guidelines puzzle industry (by C.H. Unnikrishnan, Livemint, August 26, 2013). CIS work on Access to Knowledge is mentioned.
- Are Indian Consumer Laws Ready for the Digital Age? (by Vipul Kharbanda, August 8, 2013).
- Do You Have the Right to Unlock Your Smart Phone? (by Puneeth Nagaraj, August 7, 2013).
Access to Knowledge (Wikipedia)
- A Kannada Wikipedia Workshop at Krishnarajapet (by Dr. U.B. Pavanaja, August 14, 2013). The workshop was co-organized by the CIS-A2K team along with Kannada Sahitya Parishat of KR Pet.
- An Odia Wikipedia Workshop at Sambalpur (by Gorvachove Pothal, August 27, 2013). This workshop was held at Veer Surendra Sai University of Technology, Burla, Sambalpur on July 26 and 27, 2013. Odia Wikipedian Gorvachove Pothal organized this workshop with financial support from the CIS-A2K programme.
- Konkani Wikipedia — Climbing up the Indian Language Ladder? (by Subhashish Panigrahi, August 31, 2013). CIS-A2K team organized this event at the Konkani Department, Goa University from August 21 to 24, 2013.
- Konkani Wikipedia Advances in 4 Days — From 90 Articles to 130 Articles! (by Nitika Tandon, August 31, 2013). CIS-A2K team organized this event at the Konkani Department, Goa University from August 21 to 24, 2013. Thirty-eight students took part in the wiki editing workshop.
- Digitization of Books for Indic Language WikiSource (organised by Wikimedia India and CIS-A2K, CIS, Bangalore, August 18, 2013).
- A Workshop on Editing Wikipedia in Mumbai (organised by the Centre for Indian Languages in Higher Education and CIS-A2K, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai, August 24, 2013). The workshop was aimed at assisting students to take part in the Indian Languages Mela at the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (September 20-21, 2013) which is hosting a competition for best Indian language entries on Wikipedia.
- Mobile Training Workshop @ CIS (CIS, Bangalore, August 29, 2013). Rachita and Keerthana Chandrashekar gave a talk on mobile campaigns.
- Wikimania 2013: The International Wikimedia Conference (organised by Wikimedia Foundation, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, August 7 – 11, 2013). T. Vishnu Vardhan and Subhashish Panigrahi participated in the event.
- Wikimedia Asia Meeting (organised by Wikimedia community, Hong Kong, August 10, 2013). T. Vishnu Vardhan and Subhashish Panigrahi participated in the meeting. Unedited transcript of the entire conversation is posted online.
- వికీపీడియా:సమావేశం/హైదరాబాద్/ఆగష్టు (Hyderabad, August 25, 2013). T.Vishnu Vardhan participated for the meeting through Skype.
- Wikipedia Gains Massive Traffic Thanks To Vernacular Languages (Before It’s News, August 1, 2013). T. Vishnu Vardhan is quoted.
- Wikipedia boom in Marathi, Malayalam and other desi languages (by Sandhya Soman, The Times of India, August 1, 2013). T. Vishnu Vardhan is quoted.
- Wikipedia boom in vernacular languages (by Divya Saboo, August 1, 2013). The Centre for Internet and Society is mentioned.
- Stress on posting articles on Kannada Wikipedia (by R. Krishna Kumar, Hindu, August 2, 2013). Dr. U.B.Pavanaja is quoted.
- India’s Indigenous Languages Drive Wikipedia’s Growth (by Mahesh Sharma, TechCrunch, August 6, 2013). T. Vishnu Vardhan is quoted.
- Krishnarajapet Wikipedia Workshop Coverage (Prajavani, August 12, 2013).
- Krishnarajapet Wikipedia Workshop Coverage (Vijaya Vani, August 12, 2013).
- Krishnarajapet Wikipedia Workshop Coverage (Suvarna Times of Karnataka, August 12, 2013).
- Wikipedia writes a new script (by Joyce Dias, August 24, 2013, The Goan). CIS-A2K workshop held in Goa is mentioned extensively. Nitika Tandon and Subhashish Panigrahi are quoted.
- Konkani Wikipedia makes headway (by Diana Fernandes, OHeraldO, August 24, 2013). Nitika Tandon is quoted.
- Konkani Wikipedians Speak (Goan Voice Daily Newsletter, September 4, 2013). Konkani Wikipedia workshop organized in Goa from August 21 – 24, 2013 is mentioned in this newsletter.
Ongoing / Upcoming Events
- Wikipedia Training in Telugu for Dr. B.R. Ambedkar Open University, Hyderabad (Dr. B.R. Ambedkar Open University, Hyderabad, September 5-6, 2013). T. Vishnu Vardhan is teaching a module on "Knowledge and Openness in the Digital Era".
- You too can write on Wikipedia! — Orientation Workshop (co-organised by CIS-A2K and the Centre for Contemporary Studies, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, September 15, 2013).
- Train the Trainer — Four-day long Residential Training Workshop in Bangalore (organised by CIS-A2K, Bangalore, October 1 – 5, 2013). The programme will be held in the first week of October.
- Voices from Goa: Frania Pereira tells Why She Writes Articles on Konkani Wikipedia (by Subhashish Panigrahi, August 27, 2013).
- Voices from Goa: Wikipedia Editor Rusita Paryekar (by Subhashish Panigrahi, August 27, 2013).
- Open Hardware Lab: Play & Invent + Bonus Film Screening (CIS, Bangalore, August 4, 2013). A hangout was done with CIS Lab Community and with members of the Computer Club of India and Arduino enthusiasts.
- e-DIRAP Google+ Hangout on Open Government (organised by Google, July 25, 2013). Sunil Abraham was a panelist.
- Beyond Property Rights: Thinking About Moral Definitions of Openness (by David Eaves, Tech President, August 6, 2013). Sunil Abraham is quoted.
- Extending The Spectrum Of Openness To Include The Moral Right To Share (by Glyn Moody, Techdirt, August 19, 2013). Sunil Abraham is quoted.
CIS began two projects earlier this year. The first one on facilitating research and events on surveillance and freedom of expression is with Privacy International and support from the International Development Research Centre, Canada. The second one on mapping cyber security actors in South Asia and South East Asia is with the Citizen Lab, Munk School of Global Affairs, University of Toronto and support from the International Development Research Centre, Canada:
- Sixth Privacy Roundtable (co-organised by CIS, FICCI and DSCI, New Delhi, August 24, 2013). Bhairav Acharya and Prachi Arya participated in this event. The discussions and recommendations from the six round table meetings will be presented at the Internet Governance meeting in October 2013.
Newspaper / Magazine Columns
- Freedom from Monitoring: India Inc Should Push For Privacy Laws (by Sunil Abraham, Forbes India Magazine, August 21, 2013).
- Out of the Bedroom (by Nishant Shah, Indian Express, August 25, 2013).
- 'Ethical Hacker' Saket Modi Calls for Stronger Cyber Security Discussions (by Kovey Coles, August 5, 2013).
- Ethical Issues in Open Data (by Kovey Coles, August 7, 2013).
- FinFisher in India and the Myth of Harmless Metadata (by Maria Xynou, August 13, 2013).
- The Hackers Way of Reshaping Policies (CIS, Bangalore, August 2, 2013). Bernadette Langle gave a talk on different ways to reshape policies.
- Chennai: Learn to Protect your Online Activities! (Asian College of Journalism, Taramani, Chennai, August 7, 2013). A Crypto Party was organised.
- The Phishing Society: Why 'Facebook' is more dangerous than the Government Spying on You - A Talk by Maria Xynou (CIS, Bangalore, August 7, 2013). Maria Xynou gave a talk on phishing society.
- Learn to Protect your Online Activities! (ACJ - Asian College of Journalism, Second Main Road (Behind M.S. Swaminathan Research Foundation), Taramani, Chennai, August 7, 2013).
- Privacy Meeting: Brussels – Bangalore (CIS, Bangalore, August 14, 2013). Gertjan Boulet and Dariusz Kloza gave a talk on privacy.
- Learn to Protect your Online Activities! (CIS, Bangalore, August 17, 2013). A Crypto Party was held at CIS.
Events Participated In
- Summer School 2013 (organized by the Research Center of Media and Communication at the University of Hamburg, Germany, July 29 – August 2, 2013). Dr. Nishant Shah was a panelist in the session on "Guilty until Proven Innocent: Pirates, Pornographers, Terrorists and the IT Act in India".
- Meeting of a Sub-committee on DNA Profiling Bill (Hyderabad, August 6, 2013). Sunil Abraham participated in this meeting for discussing the draft bill.
- Surveillance: Privacy Vs Security (organized by the Foundation for Media Professionals, India International Centre, New Delhi, August 17, 2013). Pranesh Prakash was a panelist.
- Crypto Night (by Rahul M., Caravan, August 1, 2013). Pranesh Prakash and Bernadette Langle are quoted.
- Facebook: Limiting access to social media can restrict freedom of speech (by Kim Arora, The Times of India, August 1, 2013). Sunil Abraham is quoted.
- Token disclosures? (by Deepa Kurup, The Hindu, August 4, 2013). Sunil Abraham is quoted.
- Memeâ€™s the word now (by Padmaparna Ghosh, The Times of India, August 4, 2013). Nishant Shah is quoted.
- Chinese hackers baiting Indian govt, corporate employees: report (by Moulishree Srivastava and Anirban Sen, Livemint, August 9, 2013). Sunil Abraham is quoted.
- Mixed signals? Supreme Court notices to states on Facebook arrests (NDTV, August 16, 2013). Pranesh Prakash, Shreya Singhal and Faizal Farooqui discussed the grey areas of the IT Act.
- Balancing vigilance and privacy (by Prashant Jha, The Hindu, August 18, 2013). Pranesh Prakash is quoted.
- How Next-Gen Smartphone Users are Being Bought and Sold (by Rohin Dharmakumar, Forbes India Magazine, August 13, 2013, and IBN Live, August 19, 2013). Sunil Abraham is quoted.
- Dear Milind Deora, Prakash Javadekar Deserved The Truth (by Rohin Dharmakumar, Forbes India, August 22, 2013). Sunil Abraham is quoted.
- Election campaign: parties draw battle lines on media platforms (by Venkatesh Upadhyay, Livemint, August 26, 2013). Sunil Abraham is quoted.
- India's Internet Privacy Woes (by Rohin Dharmakumar, Forbes India Magazine, August 26, 2013). Pranesh Prakash is quoted.
- Cyberspying: Government may ban Gmail for official communication (The Times of India, August 30, 2013). Sunil Abraham is quoted.
- Indian government to bar politicians from using Gmail for official business (by Neil McAllister, The Register, August 30, 2013). Sunil Abraham is quoted.
Cyber Stewards Project
Laird Brown, a strategic planner and writer with core competencies on brand analysis, public relations and resource management and Purba Sarkar who in the past worked as a strategic advisor in the field of SAP Retail are working in this project.
- Part 9: Interview with Saikat Datta (August 5, 2013).
CIS has published one newspaper column in the Business Standard and also made a submission to TRAI:
- Breaking into the Closed Circle: Domestic High-Tech Manufacturing Needs Access To Markets (by Shyam Ponappa, originally published in the Business Standard, July 31, 2013 and also mirrored in Organizing India Blogspot, August 1, 2013).
- TRAI Consultation Paper on Spectrum (by Shyam Ponappa and A.B. Beliappa, August 31, 2013). The submission was made to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India on August 21, 2013.
We are 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.
- Digital Humanities Talk (by Sara Morais, August 1, 2013). Sara wrote about her talk in this blog entry.
- Theorizing the Digital Subaltern (by Sara Morais, August 2, 2013).
- Digital Humanities for Indian Higher Education (co-organised by CIS-A2K, HEIRA, CSCS, Tumkur University, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai and CCS-Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, July 13, 2013). Errata: We had got the name of one of the co-organisers wrong in our previous newsletter. We have corrected this now.
Event Participated In
- South Asia Conference on Higher Education (organised by the Centre for Study of Culture and Society, Ford Foundation Office, New Delhi, August 5 – 7, 2013). Sunil Abraham participated in this conference.
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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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 email@example.com or Nishant Shah, Director – Research, at firstname.lastname@example.org
CIS is grateful to its donors, Wikimedia Foundation, Ford Foundation, Privacy International, UK, Hans Foundation and the Kusuma Trust which was founded by Anurag Dikshit and Soma Pujari, philanthropists of Indian origin, for its core funding and support for most of its projects.