internet governance

What Is 'Harmful to Minors'? US EroTICs Partner Investigates Library Search Filters

Melissa Hope Ditmore on 2 Jun 2010
In this article, Kevicha Echols and Melissa Ditmore from Sex Work Awareness (SWA), researchers for the APC's EroTICs project, investigate the use of filters on public library computers with internet access. People in the United States (US) enjoy a great deal of access to information in print and online media due to the first amendment of the US constitution, which guarantees freedom of speech, and, thereby, its flip side, access to information. However, many people in the US, particularly youth and the economically disadvantaged (who are disproportionately people of colour), rely on school and library computers to access the internet for information, so legislation affecting information available on these computers affects their ability to access information. (Photo: Audacia Ray)

Negotiating transgender identities on a South African web site

on 2 Jun 2010
Jeanne Prinsloo, the APC's EroTICs project partner in South Africa, looks at the use of the internet by South African transgender people, and examines the internet's role in the process of transitioning from one gender identity to another. She concludes that the internet provides a critical space for trans people to access support, to rehearse their new identity, to hear marginalised narratives and to assess the risks they might take. Jeanne argues that calls for content regulation should not result in censorship and surveillance practices that would curtail the trans people's freedom of expression and their internet use.

Finding a difficult balance: Human rights, law enforcement and cyber violence against women

Mavic Cabrera-Balleza on 2 Jun 2010
GenderIT writer Mavic Cabrera-Balleza probed on new analytical frameworks of violence against women taking into account cyber violence and the challenges and dilemmas women activists confront as they struggle to address this relatively new dimension of gender injustice. She spoke with two women activists who are at the forefront of advocacy on violence against women at the national and international levels - Lesley Ann Foster, founder and Executive Director of Masimanye Women’s Support Network in South Africa and Charlotte Bunch, founder and Executive Director of the Center for Women’s Global Leadership at Rutgers University in New Jersey, USA.

Unequal protection, cyber crime and the internet in India

Weiting Xu on 2 Jun 2010
In assessing cyber crime legislation, policy makers and gender and development advocates must carefully consider the implications for privacy and information security. On the one hand, ICT have created opportunities to combat inequality through movements and communities against issues that were once deemed 'private', such as domestic violence and sex trafficking. On the other hand, ICT exacerbate existing structures of inequality by enabling cyber criminals to access and misuse private information to target vulnerable groups. As ICT blur the lines between personal and public, the nature of the internet and cyber crime - including how they affect human rights and social justice - must be questioned. Weiting Xu casts a gendered lens on cybercrime laws in India.

Dealing with fraud and internet "love": women and cybercrime in Burkina Faso

on 2 Jun 2010
Fraud, data piracy, seeking partners on the internet: women in Burkina Faso are as much victims as perpetrators. From Ouagadougou to Banfora via Bobo-Dioulasso, and from Ouahigouya to Dori, all towns with an internet connection are affected by this phenomenon. However, the fight against this crime is in the tentative stages, if not altogether non-existent. Legislation is still under development.

Cybercrime laws are not enough, there is also a need for education

APC on 2 Jun 2010
The different forms of online violence against women should be covered by criminal legislation to provide adequate protection and redress. However, laws are not enough. There is also a need for education, prevention, the development of defence mechanisms and a legal system that is capable of addressing these issues without subjecting the victims to further victimisation. Carlos Gregorio, a researcher at the Research Institute for Justice (<a href="http://www.iijusticia.edu.ar" target="_blank">Instituto de Investigación para la Justicia</a>) in Buenos Aires, Argentina, shares his views on a number of issues related to cybercrime.

The internet is for porn? kaBLOG on harmful content - 1 November 2007

GenderIT.org on 2 Jun 2010
<p>Are you troubled by pornographic materials on the internet? Do you consider it damaging? Or is it a valid expression of fantasy orof diverse forms of sexualities? Have you been harmed by sexually explicit and/or violent content through information and communications technologies? How have you dealt with this in your own use of the internet, mobilephone etc.?</p>

Feminist theory, practices and actions can lead to innovative solutions on internet governance

Flavia Fascendini on 2 Jun 2010
Civil society entities, academic figures and government officials met in Sao Paulo during the first few days of July to participate in the first seminar of the preparatory process for the meeting of the Internet Governance Forum, with the aim of developing proposals to take to that forum next November. Amongst the presentations, the talk “Internet governance and issues of gender” by gender and ICT expert Magaly Pazello stood out. Gender IT.org interviewed her about the political challenges women face regarding access to ICT infrastructure, as well as the coming landscape as the IGF meeting in November approaches.

The contented and the discontented: internet content regulation

Jorge Bossio on 2 Jun 2010
What does it take to regulate content on the internet? The apparently unruly character and development of the internet and accompanying technologies have been argued as defeating any efforts to truly govern how content is circulated in this space. Nonetheless, censorship and regulation is real. Here, Jorge Bossio examines various categorisations of content that enables their regulation, as well as strategies implemented in Peru, calling for greater individual responsibility and awareness in the constitution of harm.

Mommy knows best, or perhaps the church, or maybe the school? A conversation on online content regulation

Mavic Cabrera-Balleza on 2 Jun 2010
Who decides on what we should see and not see online? Should parents decide on behalf of their children? Or should it be the church? Or the school? Are women and children better left alone? Mavic Cabrera-Balleza, Senior Programme Associate of the International Women’s Tribune Centre and a member of the GenderIt blogging team at the first Internet Governance Forum (IGF) that took place in Athens, Greece from October 30- November 2, 2006 spoke with two other IGF participants—Caroline Wamala from Uganda and Itir Akdogan from Turkey on gender issues in internet governance and online content regulation. Following are excerpts from their conversation.

Content, Contingencies and Conflict on the Internet

Cecilia Gordano on 2 Jun 2010
As both a mirror and an extension of social relationships, the internet’s virtual space differentiates itself from traditional media by its decentralised and open architecture. This subverts power relationships between citizens, institutions, governments and markets. Confusion. Impunity. Unbounded freedom. Can and should this anthill be organised? What is the ethical reach of doing so? This article proposes to take up some of the important issues regarding the content that circulates through the network. To this end, this article presents the qualified opinion of two Uruguayan professionals from government and academia.

From Geek to the WSIS Gender Caucus

Jac sm Kee on 2 Jun 2010
Jac sm Kee grabs a conversation with Jacqueline A. Morris during WSIS PrepComm3 at Geneva, and finds out about how a girl from Trinidad & Tobago ends up being a gender & ICT advocate, her insights about the two priority issues in WSIS Phase II – financing and internet governance – as well as the efficacy of the WSIS Gender Caucus.

Gender and ICT Issues at Women's World Congress

Mavic Cabrera-Balleza on 2 Jun 2010
Gender and ICT advocates from all world regions joined some 2,000 other women activists at the Women's Worlds Congress 2005, Korea, June 19-24. The advocates met separately for 2 days at Sookmyung Women's University to discuss gender and ICT issues at the World Summit for the Information Society (WSIS 2005). The meeting produced the Seoul-Gyeonggi Declaration which outlines gender issues and recommendations in relation to internet governance and financing mechanisms.

Online safety for women

Kateřina Fialová on 2 Jun 2010
The BC Rural Women’s Network, sponsored by the Vernon Women’s Centre Society, announced a new project addressing Online Safety for Women. Funded by Status of Women Canada and the National Crime Prevention Strategy, this 12-month third phase project will address women’s safety when using the internet and email communications.

Review of the implementation of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action - Report of the Secretary-General

Kateřina Fialová on 2 Jun 2010
The UN Secretary-General's report (E/CN.6/2010/2) in preparation for the 54th Commission on the Status of Women who undertook the 15 year review of the implementation of the Beijing Platform for Action (BpfA), including the section J – Women and Media. Media and ICT are mentioned throughout the Report as important tools for awareness raising and information dissemination, for example, under the sections covering 'Education and training', 'Women and health', 'Violence against women', 'Human rights of women' and 'The girl child'.
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