Centre for Internet & Society

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.

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. 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

Monthly Update



Blog Entries

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.

Blog Entries


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).

Blog Entries

Events Co-organized

News and Media Coverage

CIS-A2K team gave its inputs to the following media coverage:

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.

Internet Governance


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:

Blog Entries

Upcoming Event

  • 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

►Free Speech

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 Entry

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.

► Follow us elsewhere

► 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.