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Weekly Wire: the Global Forum

Kalliope Kokolis's picture

These are some of the views and reports relevant to our readers that caught our attention this week.

Keeping online newsrooms sustainable in the developing world

“Independent news websites in the developing world tend to be on shaky ground, as they often oppose a corrupt regime or report in a censored environment. Their work attracts hacking attempts from the government and sends advertisers fleeing.

Offering a solution to this two-pronged problem of sustainability for these sites is Media Frontiers, a social-purpose enterprise of International Media Support, a nonprofit, Danish press freedom organization.”  READ MORE

Open Democracy
The future is ‘smart’ but is it equal? African women’s digital agency

“Africa’s move towards smartphones and mobile applications (apps) will usher in an age of more sophisticated digital data and content sharing.  Predictions that 69% of mobiles  in Africa will have internet access by 2014 are being underpinned by a drive down in retail prices, which some analysts suggest gives the region more growth potential than any other.  However, it is also acknowledged that economic realities will keep mobiles out of reach for the masses for some time, while entrance into an age of more sophisticated digital data and content sharing will require a much needed education and skills impetus.  So what does this mean for African women and how do existing gender inequalities interact at various levels?   If this new phase of mobile technology represents a gear change in an individual’s opportunity for digital agency, what are the considerations at stake here for the majority of African women?”  READ MORE

ICT Works
Citizen election reporting in Kenya was a breakthrough in online-offline collaboration

“The Kenyan elections were more than a month ago, but a debate continues in the crisis mapping community about whether the various technologies deployed to track and respond to outbreaks of violence were a confused and possibly dangerous mess, or a successful contribution to what was ultimately a peaceful (if disputed) process.”  READ MORE

Rockefeller Foundation
Announcing Digital Jobs Africa

“The Rockefeller Foundation has been working on the issue of youth employment in the rapidly growing information and communications technology (ICT) enabled sectors for the last several years. Today, we are thrilled to announce the official launch of the next phase of our work: Digital Jobs Africa.

Digital Jobs Africa will unfold over the next seven years with the goal of impacting the lives of one million people through job creation for high-potential but disadvantaged youth in six African countries - Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria, and South Africa - all of which have dynamic and growing services sectors and offer the potential for continued ICT development. Building off of the Foundation’s work over the last three years, the initiative will leverage significant funds and support from other stakeholders with a nearly $100 million budget. The Foundation's partnerships and collaborations with the private sector, development organizations, civil society organizations and governments will be a critical success factor in achieving the impact goal.” READ MORE

Transparency International
Technology Against Corruption

“As mobile phone usage and internet access around the world increase it is clear that technology is transforming society.

The same goes for the fight against corruption: Websites like in India and the use of Twitter and Facebook in events like the Arab Spring have shown how technology opens up new possibilities for citizens to demand change and public accountability.

Transparency International and its chapters are promoting people power in the digital age by hosting and developing various web- and mobile-based accountability initiatives. Below is a snapshot of some of these initiatives which were presented at a recent meeting of over 70 representatives of Transparency International’s free legal advice centres around the world.” READ MORE 

Melinda Gates to New Grads: Online Connections Are Crucial

“Melinda Gates, co-founder of the Gates Foundation, delivered the commencement address to Duke University's 2013 graduating class. A 1986 Duke graduate, Gates centered Sunday's speech around the word "connected," and how technology has revolutionized the way we communicate.

Gates believes that with this communications revolution, we can make the world a "neighborhood" — quoting Martin Luther King Jr.'s famous speech — by using tech as a tool.

In her speech, she discusses both those who believe that Millenials can transform the world simply by being connected, as well as the counter-narrative, claiming that technology and social media have disconnected youth from the things that really matter. Gates disagrees with both arguments, which is a particularly resonant stance after the recent and much-disputed Time cover story, entitled ‘The Me Me Me Generation.’” READ MORE

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