Centre for Internet & Society

CIS’ Comments to the Christchurch Call

Posted by Tanaya Rajwade, Elonnai Hickok, and Raouf Kundil Peedikayil at Oct 31, 2019 09:05 AM |

In the wake of the Christchurch terror attacks, the Prime Minister of New Zealand, Jacinda Ardern, and the President of France, Emmanuel Macron co-chaired the Christchurch Call to Action in May 2018 to “bring together countries and tech companies in an attempt to bring to an end the ability to use social media to organise and promote terrorism and violent extremism.”

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Through the looking glass: Analysing transparency reports

Posted by Torsha Sarkar, Suhan S and Gurshabad Grover at Oct 30, 2019 04:10 PM |

An analysis of companies' transparency reports for government requests for user data and content removal

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Department of Labour Interaction Program: Online Business Platforms

Posted by Bharath Gururagavendran at Oct 29, 2019 06:05 AM |

The Department of Labour convened an interaction program of sorts at Vikas Soudha in Bangalore on 21st October, 2019 to hear the issues plaguing the emergent gig economy.

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Comments to the Code on Social Security, 2019

Posted by Aayush Rathi , Amruta Mahuli and Ambika Tandon at Oct 27, 2019 03:57 AM |

This submission presents a response by researchers at the Centre for Internet & Society, India (CIS) to the draft Code on Social Security, 2019 (hereinafter “ Draft Code ”) prepared by the Government of India’s Ministry of Labour and Employment.

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Comments to the United Nations Human Rights Commission Report on Gender and Privacy

Posted by Aayush Rathi, Ambika Tandon and Pallavi Bedi at Oct 24, 2019 04:25 AM |

This submission to UNHRC presents a response by researchers at the CIS to ‘gender issues arising in the digital era and their impacts on women, men and individuals of diverse sexual orientations gender identities, gender expressions and sex characteristics’. It was prepared by Aayush Rathi, Ambika Tandon, and Pallavi Bedi in response to a report of consultation by a thematic taskforce established by the Special Rapporteur on the Right to Privacy on ‘Privacy and Personality’ (hereafter, HRC Gender Report).

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“Politics by other means”: Fostering positive contestation and charting ‘red lines’ through global governance in cyberspace

Posted by Arindrajit Basu at Oct 20, 2019 06:55 AM |

The past year has been a busy one for the fermentation of global governance efforts in cyberspace with multiple actors-states, industry, and civil society spearheading a variety of initiatives. Given the multiplicity of actors, ideologies, and vested interests at play in this ecosystem, any governance initiative will be, by default, political, and desirably so.

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The Mother and Child Tracking System - understanding data trail in the Indian healthcare systems

Reproductive health programmes in India have been digitising extensive data about pregnant women for over a decade, as part of multiple health information systems. These can be seen as precursors to current conceptions of big data systems within health informatics. In this article, published by Privacy International, Ambika Tandon presents some findings from a recently concluded case study of the MCTS as an example of public data-driven initiatives in reproductive health in India.

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Farming the Future: Deployment of Artificial Intelligence in the agricultural sector in India

Posted by Elonnai Hickok, Arindrajit Basu, Siddharth Sonkar and Pranav M B at Oct 16, 2019 01:41 PM |

This case study was published as a chapter in the joint UNESCAP-Google publication titled Artificial Intelligence in Public Service Delivery. The chapter in its final form would not have been possible without the efforts and very useful interventions by our colleagues at Digital Asia Hub,Google, and UNESCAP.

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We need a better AI vision

We need a better AI vision

Posted by Arindrajit Basu at Oct 14, 2019 01:55 PM |

Artificial intelligence conjures up a wondrous world of autonomous processes but dystopia is inevitable unless rights and privacy are protected.

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AI for Good

Posted by Shweta Mohandas and Saumyaa Naidu at Oct 09, 2019 03:30 PM |

CIS organised a workshop titled ‘AI for Good’ at the Unbox Festival in Bangalore from 15th to 17th February, 2019. The workshop was led by Shweta Mohandas and Saumyaa Naidu. In the hour long workshop, the participants were asked to imagine an AI based product to bring forward the idea of ‘AI for social good’.

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Designing a Human Rights Impact Assessment for ICANN’s Policy Development Processes

Posted by Collin Kure, Akriti Bopanna and Austin Ruckstuhl at Oct 03, 2019 02:35 PM |

As co-chairs of Cross Community Working Party on Human Rights (CCWP-HR) at International Corporation of Names and Numbers (ICANN), Akriti Bopanna and Collin Kurre executed a Human Rights Impact Assessment for ICANN's processes. It was the first time such an experiment was conducted, and unique because of being a multi-stakeholder attempt.

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AI: Full Spectrum Regulatory Challenge Launch Workshop [Reference Files]

Posted by Pranav M B at Oct 01, 2019 12:40 PM |

These are the files released at the AI Full Spectrum Regulatory Challenge Launch Event, organised by CIS, and CCG-NLUD on September 27 2019. At the event, Sunil Abraham discussed the draft policy brief linked below, which is an output of the Regulatory Practices Lab at CIS.

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Artificial Intelligence: a Full-Spectrum Regulatory Challenge [Working Draft]

Today, there are certain misconceptions regarding the regulation of AI. Some corporations would like us to believe that AI is being developed and used in a regulatory vacuum. Others in civil society organisations believe that AI is a regulatory circumvention strategy deployed by corporations. As a result, these organisations call for onerous regulations targeting corporations. However, some uses of AI by corporations can be completely benign and some uses AI by the state can result in the most egregious human rights violations. Therefore policy makers need to throw every regulatory tool from their arsenal to unlock the benefits of AI and mitigate its harms.

This policy brief proposes a granular, full spectrum approach to the regulation of AI depending on who is using AI, who is impacted by that use and what human rights are impacted. Everything from deregulation, to forbearance, to updated regulations, to absolute and blanket prohibitions needs to be considered depending on the specifics. This approach stands in contrast to approaches of ethics, omnibus law, homogeneous principles, and human rights, which will result in inappropriate under-regulation or over-regulation of the sector.

Find a copy of the working draft here.

Setting International Norms of Cyber Conflict is Hard, But that Doesn't Mean that We Should Stop Trying

Posted by Arindrajit Basu and Karan Saini at Sep 30, 2019 07:00 PM |
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Last month, cyber-defense analyst and geostrategist Pukhraj Singh penned a stinging epitaph, published by MWI, for global norms-formulation processes that are attempting to foster cyber stability and regulate cyber conflict—specifically, the Tallinn Manual.

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Comparison of the Manila Principles to Draft of The Information Technology [Intermediary Guidelines(Amendment) Rules], 2018

Posted by Akriti Bopanna and Gayatri Puthran at Sep 30, 2019 02:25 PM |

This paper looks at the Manila Principles intermediary liability framework in comparison to the amended draft Information Technology [Intermediaries Guidelines (Amendment)] Rules, 2018 introduced by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) in December, 2018.

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Examining the Constitutionality of the Ban on Broadcast of News by Private FM and Community Radio Stations

Posted by Gurshabad Grover, Torsha Sarkar, Rajashri Seal and Neil Trivedi at Sep 27, 2019 04:36 PM |

Gurshabad Grover and Torsha Sarkar along with Rajashri Seal and Neil Trivedi co-authored a paper that examined the constitutionality of the government prohibition on the broadcast of news against private and community FM channels.

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Capturing Gender and Class Inequities: The CCTVisation of Delhi

Posted by Aayush Rathi and Ambika Tandon at Sep 27, 2019 03:24 PM |

Ambika Tandon and Aayush Rathi generated empirical evidence about the CCTV programme well underway in Delhi. The case study was published by Centre for Development Informatics, Global Development Institute, SEED, in the Development Informatics working paper series housed at the University of Manchester.

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The Networked Public: How Social Media is Changing Democracy

The Networked Public: How Social Media is Changing Democracy

Posted by Amber Sinha at Sep 19, 2019 01:50 PM |

The book looks at how networks exert unchecked power in subverting political discourse and polarizing the public in India. Towards that, it investigates the history of misinformation and the biases that make the public susceptible to it, how digital platforms and their governance impacts the public’s behaviour in them, as well as the changing face of political targeting in a data-driven ecosystem.

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Core Concepts and Processes

Posted by Shruti Trikanand and Amber Sinha at Sep 13, 2019 08:00 PM |

When we embarked on this research project, we began with the primary questions of what constitutes a digital identity system. In the last few years, with the rise in national digital identity projects, there has been significant academic and media attention to the idea, benefits and risks of a digital identity system.

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Submission to Global Commission on Stability of Cyberspace on the definition of Cyber Stability

Posted by Arindrajit Basu and Elonnai Hickok at Sep 11, 2019 01:35 AM |

"The Global Commission on the Stability of Cyberspace released a public consultation process that sought to solicit comments and obtain feedback on the definition of “Stability of Cyberspace”, as developed by the Global Commission on the Stability of Cyberspace (GCSC).

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