July 2016 Newsletter

by Prasad Krishna last modified Sep 17, 2016 02:13 PM
Welcome to the July 2016 newsletter of the Centre for Internet and Society (CIS).

 

For us at CIS, July was filled with a a wonderful diversity of activities, opportunities, windows, and future gazing. We made a crucial intervention by bringing attention to the misrepresentation of India's position at the UNHRC meeting by global media, and continued our contribution to the drafting of the open data license by Government of India.

We made a submission to the Ministry of Home Affairs to reject the Geospatial Information Regulation Bill, and also appealed to the MPs to re-examine the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP). We contributed to the making of an open source typeface and input tools for the Santhali language. We were studying developmental initiatives driven by big data in three parts of India (more on that in the August newsletter), mapping the emerging global governance frameworks for big data in development, and planning our future steps in this field. We initiated a study of digital transitions in Indian newspapers with support from the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism at University of Oxford, and also produced a series of analysis of industrial policy engagements by NASSCOM and iSPIRT.

We also kept pushing digital and new media research in India through our annual call for essays (abstracts have been accepted), and a brilliant talk on game studies and storytelling by Dr. Souvik Mukherjee. We were busy, and happily so.

- Sumandro Chattapadhyay

Previous issues of the newsletters can be accessed here.


Highlights

CIS in the News

CIS gave inputs to the following media coverage:

CIS members wrote the following articles:

 

-------------------------------------

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.

 

►NVDA and eSpeak

Monthly Report

 

-----------------------------------

Access to Knowledge

-----------------------------------

Our Access to Knowledge programme currently consists of two projects. The Pervasive Technologies project, conducted under a grant from the International Development Research Centre (IDRC), aims to conduct research on the complex interplay between low-cost pervasive technologies and intellectual property, in order to encourage the proliferation and development of such technologies as a social good. The Wikipedia project, which is 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.

 

►Copyright and Patent

Blog Entries

Participation in Events

  • Mapping & Mobility (Organized by Carnegie India; June 28, 2016). Anubha Sinha attended the event.
  • Workshop on Declaration on Patents Protection: Regulatory Sovereignty under TRIPS (Organized by the Inter-University Centre for IPR Studies, Cochin University of Science and Technology, Centre for Economic Studies and Planning, Jawaharlal Nehru University and the Institute for Studies in Industrial Development; Institute for Studies in Industrial Development, Institutional Area, Vasant Kunj, New Delhi; July 12 - 13, 2016). Sunil Abraham was a speaker.

 

►Wikipedia

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 Entry

Participation in Event

  • Architectures of Knowledge (Organized by Columbia's Group for Experimental Methods in the Humanities; Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai; July 4, 2016). Rohini Lakshané was a speaker.

Media Coverage

 

-----------------------------------

Openness

-----------------------------------

Our work in the Openness programme focuses on open data, especially open government data, open access, open education resources, open knowledge in Indic languages, open media, and open technologies and standards - hardware and software. We approach openness as a cross-cutting principle for knowledge production and distribution, and not as a thing-in-itself.
Article
Submission
Participation in Event

 

-----------------------------------

Internet Governance

-----------------------------------

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 IDRC) is on surveillance and freedom of expression (SAFEGUARDS). The second one (under a grant from MacArthur Foundation) is on restrictions that the Indian government has placed on freedom of expression online.

►Privacy

Research Paper

Blog Entries

Event Organized

Participation in Event

  • Privacy Law and impact of emergent technology (National Law School of India University; Bangalore; July 12, 2016). Amber Sinha taught an elective full credit course for final year undergraduate students.

►Big Data

Blog Entry

►Freedom of Expression

Blog Entries

CIS sought a series of information from ICANN on various topics. The DIDP Requests and the responses solicited were compiled and published by Asvatha Babu:

Participation in Events

 

-----------------------------------

Researchers at Work

-----------------------------------

The Researchers at Work (RAW) programme is an interdisciplinary research initiative driven by an emerging need to understand the reconfigurations of social practices and structures through the Internet and digital media technologies, and vice versa. It aims to produce local and contextual accounts of interactions, negotiations, and resolutions between the Internet, and socio-material and geo-political processes:


Blog Entries

Participated in Event

Event Organized

  • Game Studies: A Talk by Dr. Souvik Mukherjee (CIS, Bangalore, July 28, 2016). Dr. Souvik Mukherjee, Assistant Professor, Presidency University, Calcutta gave a talk on game studies, digital media, internet cultures and traditional humanities.

 

-----------------------------------

About CIS

-----------------------------------

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.

► Follow us elsewhere

► Support Us

Please help us defend consumer and 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 sunil@cis-india.org (for policy research), or Sumandro Chattapadhyay, Research Director, at sumandro@cis-india.org (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 tanveer@cis-india.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.

Document Actions