These are some of the views and reports relevant to our readers that caught our attention this week.
Open Society Foundations
Mapping Digital Media: Digital Media, Conflict and Diasporas in the Horn of Africa
“The Open Society Media Program has commissioned background papers on a range of topics that are important for understanding the effects of new technology on media and journalism. The papers accompany a series of reports, "Mapping Digital Media," on the impact of digitization on democracy in 60 countries around the world.
The Horn of Africa is one of the least connected regions in the world. Nevertheless, digital media play an important social and political role in Eritrea, Ethiopia, and Somalia (including South-Central Somalia and the northern self-declared independent Republic of Somaliland). This paper shows how the development of the internet, mobile phones, and other new communication technologies have been shaped by conflict and power struggles in these countries.” READ MORE
The Wall Street Journal
Survey Finds Nearly 75% Of Europeans See Corruption As Major Issue In Their Country
“A survey by the European Commission found that 74% of respondents believe corruption in a major issue in their country.
The Eurobarometer survey (pdf), conducted in September 2011 and fielding nearly 27,000 responses, found a wide disparity between countries’ perceptions of themselves: 98% of Greece think graft is a major problem, while only 19% of Denmark’s respondents said the same.
‘It is disappointing to note that the practical results in tackling corruption across the European Union remain unsatisfactory,’ said Cecilia Malmström, commissioner for Home Affairs, in a statement. ‘How many times have we said it was high time to act? Europeans expect national governments to take decisive steps. It’s time they did.’” READ MORE
The New Age
Mbeki’s new mission
“Former South African president Thabo Mbeki has been given the responsibility of leading a high-level team to stem the illegal outflow of about $50bn (R384bn) yearly of African resources out of the continent.
Mbeki, who was recently appointed chairperson of the UN Economic Commission on Africa (Uneca) panel, is determined to put a stop to marauding foreign companies, individuals and governments draining the continent’s resources and wealth with impunity and thereby undermining the prospects of Africa’s development.” READ MORE
“The executive director of the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) has called for a "global coalition" between media, governments, business sectors and "civil society organisations" against censorship.
In the press freedom organisation's annual Attacks on the Press report, which documents the "media conditions" across more than 100 countries, Simon refers to "the next information revolution", where those keen to restrict the press have learnt "that maintaining a viable censorship regime is even more urgent in the information age."
He adds: ‘The reality is that there are few effective legal mechanisms to fight censorship on an international level.’” READ MORE
“The Mobile Observatory series includes reports on the large and mature European market, the extensive and dynamically evolving market of the Asia-Pacific region and the fast growing Latin-American region. This is the first African edition in the GSMA Mobile Observatory series. This Observatory provides a comprehensive review of the African mobile communications industry. Included are the latest statistics and market developments, as a reference point for mobile industry participants, policy makers and other interested stakeholders. It covers the state of the industry, including the evolution of competition, innovation in new products, services and technologies and the industry’s contribution to social and economic development in Africa. The report integrates data from a wide range of existing sources to provide a comprehensive picture of the African mobile industry. These include public sources such as the ITU, World Bank and research by National Regulatory Authorities as well as commercial providers such as Wireless Intelligence, Informa, Gartner, Buddecomm and IDC.
The mobile industry in Africa is booming. With over 620 million mobile connections as of September 2011, Africa has overtaken Latin America to become the second largest mobile market in the world, after Asia. Over the past 10 years, the number of mobile connections in Africa has grown an average of 30% per year and is forecast to reach 735 million by the end of 2012.” READ MORE