Internet use barriers and user strategies: perspectives from Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa and Rwanda
15 March 2017| 970 views
The introduction of OTT services that replace regular messaging applications in built into a phone, definitely has an impact on internet use. OTT services have become the main entry point to the Internet for most users in the prepaid mobile environment that characterises most African markets. This comparative country study, based on focus groups conducted in November 2016 in Kenya, Nigeria, Rwanda and South Africa, sought to develop evidence of why people, use the Internet the way they do, specifically when their data is subsidised. The study is meant to inform policy making and especially discourse around internet rights.
15 December 2016| 1,443 views
Surveillance has historically functioned as an oppressive tool to control women’s bodies and is closely related to colonial modes of managing populations. Big data, metadata and the technologies used to collect, store and analyse them are by no means neutral, but come with their own exclusions and biases. This paper highlights the gendered and racialised effects of data practices; outlines the overlapping nature of state, commercial and peer surveillance; and maps the challenges and opportunities women and queers encounter on the nexus between data, surveillance, gender and sexuality.
1 June 2016| 1,145 views
What are the relationships and interdependencies influencing the promises of being online: voice, visibility, and power? This ARROW for Change (AFC) issue on sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) and the internet documents some of these dynamics.
1 December 2016| 1,274 views
In IGF 2015 gender report cards were completed for a total of 107 workshops – more than double the 51 regional workshops reported on in 2015. A summary and analysis of the discussion and comments are included here.
This study led by Digital Empowerment Foundation analyses 14 projects that are active in India in the arena of civic participation, education and health, and examines its impact on women stakeholders. One of the objectives is to understand how mobile phones are benefiting women frontline workers (teachers, auxiliary nurses) and mothers; however, the study's main findings are that accessibility and availability of local content are two major challenges of using ICTs among women.
A feminist internet works towards empowering more women and queer persons – in all our diversities – to fully enjoy our rights, engage in pleasure and play, and dismantle patriarchy. This integrates our different realities, contexts and specificities – including age, disabilities, sexualities, gender identities and expressions, socioeconomic locations, political and religious beliefs, ethnic origins, and racial markers. The following key principles are critical towards realising a feminist internet.
Acknowledging the differences in perceptions between genders, and between urban and rural dwellers, what must be realized is that these differences are often not unique to aspects related to the mobile phone. The concerns, needs, and benefits ascribed to the mobile phone are more a reflection of people’s existing societal, familial, and gender norms prevalent in their environments, rather than having been elicited by the mobile phone. From the perception of the study participants, the phone is an enabler of extant human need and desire.
Conflicts over lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) rights, similar to other social struggles, are increasingly materializing within technical functions of Internet governance and architecture rather than at the surface level of content.
Findings of the Internet Democracy Project research study, ‘”Don’t Let It Stand!”: An Exploratory Study of Women and Verbal Online Abuse in India’, indicate that women in India develop a variety of strategies to deal with the verbal threats they face. However, these strategies very rarely include the law,resulting in a silence around questions of legal effectiveness and recourse for online verbal abuse.
This report was inspired by the scientific evidence examined during the *Gender Summit 6 Asia-Pacific*, in Seoul on 26-28 August 2015, showing how research and innovation outcomes are influenced by biological and social differences between females and males, and by the growing scientific consensus to integrate gender as a dimension of quality and impact in research.