Centre for Internet & Society

Welcome to the newsletter of October 2012 from the Centre for Internet & Society (CIS). The present issue features an analysis by Ujwala Uppaluri of the Delhi High Court’s judgment in Super Cassettes v. MySpace, announcement of public call for comments for reports on “Banking and Accessibility in India” and “Making TV Accessible in India”, and updates on Indic languages.

Jobs
CIS is seeking applications the posts of Research Manager and Programme Officer – Internet Governance. To apply send your resume to sunil@cis-india.org.

Accessibility

India has an estimated 70 million disabled persons who are unable to read printed materials due to some form of physical, sensory, cognitive or other disability. The disabled need accessible content, devices and interfaces facilitated via copyright law and electronic accessibility policies:

Public Call for Comments

Blog Entries

Access to Knowledge

The Access to Knowledge programme addresses the harms caused to consumers, developing countries, human rights, and creativity/innovation from excessive regimes of copyright, patents, and other such monopolistic rights over knowledge:

Analysis

Blog Entry

Event Organised

Openness

The 'Openness' programme critically examines alternatives to existing regimes of intellectual property rights, and transparency and accountability. Under this programme, we study Open Government Data, Open Access to Scholarly Literature, Open Access to Law, Open Content, Open Standards, and Free/Libre/Open Source Software:

Wikipedia Education Programs

Wikipedia Workshops

Wikipedia Event

Wikipedia Press Coverage

Wikipedia Team Updates

HasGeek

HasGeek creates discussion spaces for geeks and has organised conferences like the Fifth Elephant, Droidcon India 2011, Android Camp, etc. HasGeek is supported by CIS and works out from CIS office in Bengaluru. The following event was organised by HasGeek in the month of October:

Internet Governance

The Internet Governance programme conducts research around the various social, technical, and political underpinnings of global and national Internet governance, and includes online privacy, freedom of speech, and Internet governance mechanisms and processes:

Column

Analysis

Upcoming IGF Events

At the seventh annual IGF meeting to be held in Baku, Azerbaijan in November 2012, CIS is organising one workshop:

Pranesh Prakash is a panelist in the following workshop:

  • New Trends in Industry Self-Governance (organised by Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford, UK and Media Change & Innovation Division, IPMZ, University of Zurich, Switzerland and Nominet, UK, November 7, 2012 from 4.30 p.m. to 6.00 p.m).

CIS fellow Malavika Jayaram is a panelist for these workshops:

Other Upcoming Event

  • DML Conference 2013 (Sheraton Chicago Hotel & Towers - Chicago, Illinois, March 14 – 16, 2012): CIS and Digital Media & Learning Research Hub Central are jointly organizing the DML Conference 2013 in Chicago.

Event organised

Events Participated

  • 3rd Worldwide Cybersecurity Summit (organised by EastWest Institute in partnership with NASSCOM and FICCI, Federation House, New Delhi, October 30-31, 2012): Sunil Abraham and Elonnai Hickok participated in this event.
  • Fourth Annual Legal Services Conference in India (organised by US India Business Council, New Delhi, October 11, 2012): Pranesh Prakash was a panelist in the session on “Censorship and Content Restrictions: The Future of Internet Speech in India”.
  • Meeting on Lawful Access by Law Enforcement (Brussels, October 3 – 5, 2012): Elonnai Hickok participated in the meeting.

Video

Media Coverage

Telecom

While the potential for growth and returns exist for telecommunications in India, a range of issues need to be addressed. One aspect is more extensive rural coverage and the other is a countrywide access to broadband which is low. Both require effective and efficient use of networks and resources, including spectrum:

Building Knowledge and Capacity around Telecommunication Policy in India

CIS and Ford Foundation joined hands to build expertise in the area of telecommunications in India. Dr. Surendra Pal, Satya N Gupta, Paranjoy Guha Thakurta, Payal Malik, Dr. Rakesh Mehrotra and Dr. Nadeem Akhtar are the expert reviewers. The following are the new outputs:

Column in Business Standard

Digital Natives

Digital Natives with a Cause? examines the changing landscape of social change and political participation in light of the role that young people play through digital and Internet technologies, in emerging information societies. Consolidating knowledge from Asia, Africa and Latin America, it builds a global network of knowledge partners who critically engage with discourse on youth, technology and social change, and look at alternative practices and ideas in the Global South:

Newspaper Column

Researchers at Work

CIS organised the Habits of Living Workshop in Bangalore from September 26 to 29, 2012. Three columns by Nishant Shah arising from these workshops were published in the month of October:

*About CIS*

CIS was registered as a society in Bangalore in 2008. As an independent, non-profit research organisation, it runs different policy research programmes such as Accessibility, Access to Knowledge, Openness, Internet Governance, and Telecom. The policy research programmes have resulted in outputs such as the e-Accessibility Policy Handbook for Persons with Disabilities with ITU and G3ict, and Digital Alternatives with a Cause?, Thinkathon Position Papers and the Digital Natives with a Cause? Report with Hivos, etc. We conducted policy research for the Ministry of Communications & Information Technology, Ministry of Human Resource Development, Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions, Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, etc., on WIPO Treaties, Copyright Bill, NIA Bill, etc. CIS is accredited as an observer at WIPO, and has given policy briefs to delegations from various countries, our Programme Manager, Nirmita Narasimhan won the National Award for Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities from the Government of India and also received the NIVH Excellence Award.

*Follow us elsewhere*

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.