January 2016 Bulletin
The Centre for Internet and Society (CIS) is happy to share the January 2016 issue of its newsletter.
Previous issues of the newsletters can be accessed at http://cis-india.org/about/newsletters.
Accessibility & Inclusion
India has an estimated 70 million persons with disabilities who don't have access to read printed materials due to some form of physical, sensory, cognitive or other disability. As part of our endeavour to make available accessible content for persons with disabilities we are developing a text-to-speech software in 15 languages with support from the Hans Foundation. The progress made so far in the project can be accessed here.
Note: This project with the Hans Foundation got over last year. We published the Compendium recently.
- National Compendium of Laws, Policies, Programmes for Persons with Disabilities (Office of the Chief Commissioner for Persons with Disabilities, Department of Disability Affairs, Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment, Government of India and CIS; January 3, 2016).
News and Media Coverage
- Global Charter: Promoting Global Digital Inclusion through ICT Procurement Policies & Accessibility Standards (G3ict; January 3, 2016). CIS was a signatory to this initiative.
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.
The 4th Global Congress 2015 was held in New Delhi from December 15 to 17, 2015. Pervasive Technologies team from CIS made the following presentations during the event:
- Nehaa Chaudhari: The Curious Case of the CCI: Competition Law and SEP Regulation in India
- Amba Uttara Kak and Maggie Huang: Rethinking Music Copyright Management in the Age of Digital Distribution: Business Models, Licensing Practices and Copyright Institutions in India
- Rohini Lakshané: Patent Landscaping in the sub-$100 Mobile Device Market in India
- Anubha Sinha: IP in Mobile Applications Development in India
The following blog entries published last year and the year before were recently updated:
- Litigation without injunction is a toothless tiger: Ericsson (Rohini Lakshané; January 15, 2016)
- Joining the Dots in India's Big-Ticket Mobile Phone Patent Litigation (Rohini Lakshané; May 31, 2015). Last updated on January 21, 2016.
- Literature Survey: Patent Landscaping in the Indian Marketplace (Rohini Lakshané; December 31, 2014). Last updated on January 22, 2016.
►Copyright and Patent
- Examples of Excluded Patentable subject-matter under Section 3(k) for incorporation in the yet-to-be-released Guidelines for Computer Related Inventions (Anubha Sinha; January 28, 2016). You may view the Guidelines here. To read the letter sent to the PMO, click here. To read CIS' analysis of the Guidelines, click here.
- Job Michael Mathew was an intern at CIS. He conducted a series of interviews as a lead up to the Global Congress. All these posts were published on Global Congress website and mirrored on CIS website recently. Mathew conducted interviews withMichael Geist,Zakir Thomas,Susan K. Sell,Shamnad Basheer, and Jayashree Watal.
- Intellectual Property Rights & TRIPS: An Overview (Job Michael Mathew; December 12, 2015).
Participation in Events
- 3rd Expert Committee Meeting on reference of secretary, MHRD on representation of Internet and Mobile Association of India (Organized by the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting; New Delhi; January 11, 2016). Anubha Sinha and Nehaa Chaudhari attended the meeting.
- Guidelines for Examination of Computer Related Inventions (CRIs) (Organized by the Office of The Controller General, Patents, Designs & Trade Marks; Mumbai; January 12, 2016). Anubha Sinha attended the meeting.
As part of the project grant from the Wikimedia Foundation we have reached out to more than 3500 people across India by organizing more than 100 outreach events and catalysed the release of encyclopaedic and other content under the Creative Commons (CC-BY-3.0) license in four Indian languages (21 books in Telugu, 13 in Odia, 4 volumes of encyclopaedia in Konkani and 6 volumes in Kannada, and 1 book on Odia language history in English).
- କେତେ ମାଗଣା "ଫ୍ରି ବେସିକ୍ସ (Subhashish Panigrahi; Samaja; January 4, 2016). Sunil Abraham and Pranesh Prakash gave inputs.
- ବ୍ୟବହାରୀଙ୍କ ପାଇଁ ନିରାପତ୍ତା ଓ ଗୋପନୀୟତାର କୋକୁଆ ଆଣିବ ଫେସବୁକର ଫ୍ରି ବେସିକ୍ସ (Subhashish Panigrahi; Your Story; January 5, 2016).
- ଓଡ଼ିଆ ଉଇକିପାଠାଗାର: ଓଡ଼ିଆରେ ଡିଜିଟାଲ ପାଠାଗାର ଆନ୍ଦୋଳନର ନୂଆ ମୁହଁ (Subhashish Panigrahi; Your Story; January 12, 2016).
- ଓଡ଼ିଆ ଭାଷା ପାଇଁ କିଛି ଅନ୍ତର୍ଜାତୀୟ ଇଣ୍ଟରନେଟ ପ୍ରକଳ୍ ପ (Subhashish Panigrahi; Your Story; January 14, 2016).
- Why It's Essential To Grow Indian-Language Wikipedias (Subhashish Panigrahi; Huffington Post; January 25, 2016).
- This Multilingual Edit-a-thon wants to Improve Indian Content on Wikipedia (Subhashish Panigrahi; DNA; January 26, 2016).
- କେତେ ମାଗଣା ଫେସବୁକର ଫ୍ରି ବେସିକ୍ସ? (Subhashish Panigrahi; Odisha.com; January 27, 2016).
- Odia Wikipedia progress from July to December, 2015 (Rahmanuddin Shaik; January 1, 2016).
- Report of Konkani Wikipedia's progress (July - December 2015) (Rahmanuddin Shaik; January 1, 2016).
- WikipediansSpeak: Odia Wikisourcer Shares her Journey and Goals (Subhashish Panigrahi and Nasim Ali; January 30, 2016).
- Telugu Wikipedia Education Program (Co-organized by CIS-A2K and Andhra Loyola College; Vijaywada; January 12 - 13, 2016). CIS is opening up a Wikipedia Digital Centre in the college so that students and local Wikimedians could grow Wikipedia and other Wikimedia content in Telugu and other Indian languages.
- Geographical Indications in India Edit-a-thon (Organized by CIS-A2K; India; January 25 - 31, 2016). The goal of this edit-a-thon was to create and improve Geographical Indications articles.
Participation in Events
- Editathon at Mysore (Organized by Kannada Wikipedia community; Centre for Proficiency Development and Placement Services (CPDPS), Manasa Gangotri, University of Mysore; January 11 - 13, 2016). Dr. U.B. Pavanaja was the key resource person. Prajavani published a report.
- Padartha Chintamani - Pada Kammata Program (Organized by Padartha Chintamani (ಪದಾರ್ಥ ಚಿಂತಾಮಣಿ); Indian Institute of World Culture, Bangalore; January 17, 2016). Dr. U.B. Pavanaja is one of the active members of this group.
CIS-A2K gave its inputs towards the following media coverage:
- Books at a Click (New Indian Express; January 9, 2016).
- Read Bengali, Malayalam classics online as free Wiki libraries grow (Sandhya Soman; The Times of India; January 10, 2016).
- Youth is responsible for protecting Telugu (Eenadu; January 14, 2016).
- Wikipedia Digital Centre now at Andhra Loyola College (Hans India; January 14, 2016).
- Kannada Wikipedia not on top of the charts (Muralidhara Khajane; Hindu; January 19, 2016).
- GI-tagged products to get Wiki pages (S. Anandan; Hindu; January 26, 2016).
- Wikipedia initiative - Celebrating legacy of Bangalore Blue grapes online (The Times of India; January 27, 2016).
- Pre-Budget Consultation 2016 - Submission to the IT Group of the Ministry of Finance (Sumandro Chattapadhyay, with contributions from Rohini Lakshané, Anubha Sinha, and other members of CIS; January 12, 2016).
- Approaching Open Research via Open Data - Presentation at TERI, December 22, 2015 (Sumandro Chattapadhyay; January 12, 2016). Sumandro Chattapadhyay delivered a special address.
- The Zen of Pad.ma: 10 Lessons Learned from Running Open Access Online Video Archives in India and beyond (Organized by CIS; Bangalore; February 3, 2016). Sebastian Lütgert and Jan Gerber, the co-initiators of, and the artists/programmers behind the pad.ma (Public Access Digital Media Archive) project will deliver a lecture at CIS office in Bangalore.
- OER16: Open Culture (Organized by Association for Learning Technology; University of Edinburg; April 19 - 20, 2016). As a part of the programme committee, Subhashish Panigrahi is currently reviewing the submissions for the 7th Open Educational Resources Conference, "OER16: Open Culture".
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.
►Freedom of Expression
- Free Basics: Negating net parity (Sunil Abraham; Deccan Herald; January 3, 2016).
- Facebook Free Basics: Gatekeeping Powers Extend to Manipulating Public Discourse (Vidushi Marda; Catchnews; January 6, 2016).
- The Internet Has a New Standard for Censorship (Jyoti Panday; The Wire; January 29, 2016).
- Comments on the CCWG-Accountability Draft Proposal (Pranesh Prakash; January 29, 2016). CIS gave its comments on the failures of the CCWG-Accountability draft proposal as well as the processes that it has followed.
- Network Neutrality Regulation across South Asia: A Roundtable on Aspects of Differential Pricing (The Energy Resources Institute; Bangalore; January 22, 2016).
- Public Debate on 'Differential Pricing': Series 1 (Organized by CIS; ICRIER and the Department of Civics and Politics, University of Mumbai; at CIS, Bangalore; February 1, 2016).
- Public Debate on 'Differential Pricing': Series 2 (Organized by CIS; ICRIER and the Department of Civics and Politics, University of Mumbai; Pherozeshah Mehta Bhavan, Vidyanagari, Kalina, Mumbai; February 3, 2016).
- Public Debate on 'Differential Pricing': Series 3 (Organized by CIS; ICRIER and the Department of Civics and Politics, University of Mumbai; (Maple Hall, India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road near Air Force Bal Bharti School, New Delhi; February 5, 2016).
Participation in Events
- Mobile India 2016 (Organized by COMSNETS in association with Department of Electronics and Information Technology, Digital India, et.al.; Bangalore; January 5 - 9, 2016). Sunil Abraham participated as a speaker in Session 4: Law, Regulation and Policy of App Economy.
- #NetNeutrality and Data Protection Laws (Organized by ITechLaw India International Conference; January 27 - 29, 2016). Pranesh Prakash was a panelist.
- Reply to RTI Application under RTI Act of 2005 from Vanya Rakesh (Vanya Rakesh; January 3, 2016).
- Eight Key Privacy Events in India in the Year 2015 (Amber Sinha; January 3, 2016).
- Human Rights in the Age of Digital Technology: A Conference to Discuss the Evolution of Privacy and Surveillance (Amber Sinha; January 11, 2016).
- A Critique of Consent in Information Privacy (Amber Sinha and Scott Mason; January 11, 2016).
- NASSCOM-DSCI Annual Information Security Summit 2015 - Notes (Sumandro Chattapadhyay; January 19, 2016).
- Transparency in Surveillance (Vipul Kharbanda; January 23, 2016).
Participation in Events
- Data Privacy Day 2016 (Organized by Data Security Council of India; January 28, 2016; Bangalore). Sunil Abraham was a panelist.
- Nature of Knowledge (Scott Mason; January 11, 2016).
- Big Data in the Global South - An Analysis (Tanvi Mani; January 15, 2016).
- Big Data and Governance in India (CIS; Bangalore; January 23, 2016).
- The Creation of a Network for the Global South - A Literature Review (Tanvi Mani; January 13, 2016).
- Summary of the Public Consultation by Vigyan Foundation, Oxfam India and G.B. Pant Institute, Allahabad (Vipul Kharbanda; January 28, 2016).
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:
Participation in Event
- TV White Space Trials & The TRAI (Meeting convened by Chairman, Telecom Regulatory Authority of India; November 26, 2015; New Delhi). Shyam Ponappa participated in the meeting. This was published recently on CIS website.
Researchers at Work
The Researchers at Work (RAW) programme is an interdisciplinary research initiative driven by contemporary concerns to understand the reconfigurations of social practices and structures through the Internet and digital media technologies, and vice versa. It is interested in producing local and contextual accounts of interactions, negotiations, and resolutions between the Internet, and socio-material and geo-political processes:
- First Edition of Internet Researchers' Conference (IRC) 2016 - Studying Internet in India: Call for Sessions (Organized by CIS; New Delhi; February 25 - 27, 2016). We have announced the selected sessions for the Conference.
- RAW Lectures #02: Anil Menon on 'Undermining the Tyrant's Protocols: Speculative Fiction and Freedom' (CIS, Bangalore; January 13, 2016). Anil Menon gave a talk.
- A.I. Hype Cycles and Artistic Subversions (CIS, Bangalore; January 22, 2016). Gene Kogan gave a talk.
- Digital Futures of Indian Languages - Notes from the Consultation (Tejaswini Niranjana; January 12, 2016).
News & Media Coverage
CIS gave its inputs to the following media coverage:
- Facebook's Free Basics Shuts Down In Egypt, Continuing Troubled Run (TV Newsroom; January 1, 2016).
- Zuckerberg's India Backlash Imperils Free Global Web Vision (Bhuma Shrivastava; NDTV; January 4, 2016).
- Will India win net neutrality battle? (Pratap Vikram Singh and Taru Bhatia; Governance Now; January 5, 2016).
- Nasscom wants board to protect Net neutrality, regulate pricing (Shadma Shaikh; Asian Age; January 7, 2016).
- Facebook is no charity, and the 'free' in Free Basics comes at a price (The Conversation; January 11, 2016 and The Register; January 18, 2016).
- Why Indians are turning down Facebook's free internet (Nimisha Jaiswal; Global Post; January 13, 2016).
- A billion mobile users: new startup profiles and innovation insights from Mobile India 2016 (Sneha Maselkar and Madanmohan Rao; Your Story; January 14, 2016).
- Facebook's Fight to Be Free (Adi Narayan and Bhuma Shrivastava; January 15, 2016).
- Trai promises final call on differential pricing by month-end after 'lively' open house (Economic Times; January 22, 2016).
- India, Egypt say no thanks to free Internet from Facebook (Annie Gowen with contributions from Farheen Fatima and Subuhi Parvez; Washington Post; January 28, 2016).
The Centre for Internet and Society (CIS) is a non-profit organisation that undertakes interdisciplinary research on internet and digital technologies from policy and academic perspectives. The areas of focus include digital accessibility for persons with diverse abilities, access to knowledge, intellectual property rights, openness (including open data, free and open source software, open standards, open access, open educational resources, and open video), internet governance, telecommunication reform, digital privacy, and cyber-security. The academic research at CIS seeks to understand the reconfigurations of social and cultural processes and structures as mediated through the internet and digital media technologies.
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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, artists, and theoreticians, both organisationally and as individuals, to engage with us on topics related internet and society, and improve our collective understanding of this field. To discuss such possibilities, please write to Sunil Abraham, Executive Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org (for policy research), or Sumandro Chattapadhyay, Research Director, at email@example.com (for academic research), with an indication of the form and the content of the collaboration you might be interested in. To discuss collaborations on Indic language Wikipedia projects, write to Tanveer Hasan, Programme Officer, at firstname.lastname@example.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.