October 2014 Bulletin
Welcome to the tenth issue of the newsletter (October 2014).
We at the Centre for Internet & Society (CIS) welcome you to the tenth issue of the newsletter (October 2014). Archives of our newsletters can be accessed at: http://cis-india.org/about/newsletters
- CIS sent its comments and recommendations on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Bill, 2014. It was submitted to the Parliamentary Standing Committee in October 2014.
- CIS has published the Central Guidelines and Schemes.
- CIS was one of the signatories of a letter sent to the Prime Minister of India Shri Narendra Modi sharing its concerns on India's position on intellectual property, particularly in the context of bilateral relations between the United States of America and India. The letter was sent on October 22, 2014.
- In 2013, the Indian Patent Office released Draft Guidelines for the Examination of Computer Related Inventions, in an effort to clarify some of the ambiguity. Shashank Singh analyses the various responses by the stakeholders to these Guidelines and highlights the various issues put forth in the responses.
- Subhashish Panigrahi wrote an op-ed in the Samaja (Odia daily) on the hurdles that the Odia language has been facing and the potential aspects of the language including it being used massively on the Internet, Wikipedia and other media platforms.
- International Telecommunications Union is hosting its Plenipotentiary Conference this year in South Korea. India introduced a new draft resolution on ITU's Role in Realising Secure Information Society. The Draft Resolution has grave implications for human rights and Internet governance. Geetha Hariharan analyses this.
- Vipul Kharbanda analyses the possible implications of the public interest litigation that has been placed before the Supreme Court petitioning for the establishment of a DNA database in respect to unidentified bodies in his latest blog entry.
- In a blog post published in Lila Interactions P.P.Sneha explores the possibilities of redefining the idea of access through the channels of education and learning.
- Programme Officer (Access to Knowledge - Institutional Partnerships): CIS is seeking applications for the post of Programme Officer for its Access to Knowledge (A2K) Programme. The position will be based in its Bangalore office. Programme Officer will collaboratively work with the A2K Team and would report to the Programme Director, Access to Knowledge at CIS.
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. CIS in partnership with CLPR (Centre for Law and Policy Research) compiled the National Compendium of Policies, Programmes and Schemes for Persons with Disabilities (29 states and 6 union territories). The updated draft is being reviewed by the Office of the Chief Commissioner for Persons with Disabilities. The draft chapters and 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 and eSpeak
- October 2014 Report (Suman Dogra; October 31, 2014).
- Comments to the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Bill , 2014 (Nirmita Narasimhan and Anandhi Viswanathan; October 30, 2014).
- Central Guidelines and Schemes (Anandhi Viswanathan, October 14, 2014).
- The Legal Framework for Enforcement of Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CLPR; October 14, 2014).
- Communication technology opens 'doors' for everyone, not only people with disabilities (John D. Kemp and Brandon M. Macsata, The Hill, October 13, 2014).
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.
- Letter to the Prime Minister on Indo-US Bilateral Relations on Intellectual Property (Nehaa Chaudhari; October 22, 2014).
- Guidelines for Examination of Computer Related Inventions: Mapping the Stakeholders' Response (Shashank Singh; October 29, 2014).
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).
- ଓଡ଼ିଆ ଭାଷା ବିକାଶରେ ପ୍ରତିବନ୍ଧକ ଓ ସମ୍ଭାବନା (Subhashish Panigrahi, Samaja; October 13, 2014).
- Bharat Majhi Writings Now Available Under a Creative Commons License (Subhashish Panigrahi; October 14, 2014).
- More Than 40 Million People Await the Launch of Odia Wikisource (Subhashish Panigrahi, Global Voices and Wikimedia Blog; October 21, 2014).
- Odia Littérateur Ramakrushna Nanda's 4 Books Now Available Under a Creative Commons License (Subhashish Panigrahi; October 22, 2014).
- Open Access Platform to Save the Odia Indian Language (Subhashish Panigrahi, Opensource.com; October 22, 2014).
- Odia Wikisource Goes Live! (Subhashish Panigrahi; October 26, 2014).
- Samskrita Vaibhavam (Sanskrit Wiki Outreach Program) (Shubha and Sayant Mahato; October 30, 2014).
- Tulu Wikipedia Workshop cum Editathon at Udupi (Dr. U.B.Pavanaja, October 31, 2014). The event was covered by V4News.com and Mangalore Today.
- Converting from nonUnicode (Nudi, Baraha, ...) font encoding to Unicode Kannada (Dr. U.B.Pavanaja; October 31, 2014).
- Sangeet Baithak: A Hindustani Music Resource Donation Event in Mumbai (Organized by CIS-A2K and Khayal Trust; Shivaji Park, Dadar, Mumbai; October 7, 2014).
- Indian Women in Science Wiki edit-a-thon (Organized by IndoBioScience and CIS-A2K; Centre for Ecological Sciences, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore; October 11, 2014).
- Ada Lovelace Edit-a-thon 2014 (Organized by IndoBioScience and CIS-A2K; Urban Solace; October 14, 2014).
News and Media Coverage
CIS-A2K team gave its inputs to the following media coverage:
- Enliven the Tulu Viki Fidia first and then add Tulu to the 8th Schedule : Dr.UG Pavanaja, Bangalore Rep. in Udupi (V4News.com; October 15, 2014).
- Wikipedia can establish Tulu in a wider way (Mangalore Today; October 17, 2014).
- Pushing women scientists (Renuka Phadnis; Hindu; October 19, 2014).
- Wiki Media Foundation keen on developing Urdu Wikipedia (Nisar Ahmed Syed; October 22, 2014).
- Wiki Media Foundation keen on developing Urdu Wikipedia (Siasat Daily; October 24, 2014).
Participation in Event
- Barcamp Bangalore (Organized by SAP Labs; Bangalore; October 12, 2014). Dr. U.B.Pavanaja and Rahmanuddin Shaik took part in the event.
As part of our Surveillance and Freedom: Global Understandings and Rights Development (SAFEGUARD) project with Privacy International we are engaged in enhancing respect for the right to privacy in developing countries. We have produced the following outputs during the month although these may not be part of the SAFEGUARD project:
- The Gujarat High Court Judgment on the Snoopgate Issue (Vipul Kharbanda; October 27, 2014).
- DNA Database for Missing Persons and Unidentified Dead Bodies (Vipul Kharbanda; October 31, 2014).
- CPDP 2015 : The eighth international conference on computers, privacy and data protection will be held in Brussels from January 21 to 23, 2015. CIS is a moral supporter of CPDP.
Participation in Events
- Training for Internet Governance Activists (Organized by Global Partners Digital, UK; Cambridge; September 23 - 24, 2014). Geetha Hariharan attended the event. The event was held in September and the details published in October.
- The India Conference on Cyber Security and Cyber Governance (Organized by FICCI and CYFY; October 15 - 17, 2014; New Delhi). CIS was a knowledge partner. Sunil Abraham was a panelist in the session "Privacy is Dead".
- Expert Consultation on Cyber Security, Justice and Governance (Organized by Hague Institute for Global Justice, Observer Research Foundation and STIMSON; October 18, 2014). Sunil Abraham was a speaker in the session "Internet Access, Freedom Online, and Development in the Global South".
- Good Intentions, Recalcitrant Text - I: Why India's Proposal at the ITU is Troubling for Internet Freedoms (Geeta Hariharan; October 28, 2014).
- Good Intentions, Recalcitrant Text - II: What India's ITU Proposal May Mean for Internet Governance (Geeta Hariharan; November 1, 2014).
CIS gave its inputs to the following media coverage:
- Is India the next frontier for Facebook? (Rama Lakshmi; Washington Post; October 9, 2014).
- If MNCs make early inroads, they will keep market share: Sunil Abraham, CIS (J.Anand; Financial Express; October 23, 2014).
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:
- Rethinking Conditions of Access (P.P.Sneha, Lilainteractions; October 15, 2014).
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.
► Follow us elsewhere
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/CISA2K
- Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/cisa2k
- Visit us at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/India_Access_To_Knowledge
- E-mail: [email protected]
► Support Us
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[email protected] or Nishant Shah, Director - Research, at [email protected]. To discuss collaborations on Indic language Wikipedia, write to T. Vishnu Vardhan, Programme Director, A2K, at [email protected].
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.