Suggested Readings

Information and Internet Rights in Zimbabwe

This research paper, compiled by Izak Minnaar, highlights key advocacy principles in relation to information and internet rights, using the AfDec principles. The paper aims to guide MISA Zimbabwe in its efforts to embolden ordinary citizens to play an active role in the shaping of internet policy and the protection of their digital rights in Zimbabwe. Here, the assessment of key advocacy principles, , texts and references offers pertinent guidelines to strategically implement policies and law regulations that recognise, protect and promote digital rights. The internet is a powerful tool for the realisation of all human rights, thus it is incumbent that individuals have the means to exercise their fundamental right to access information, as highlighted in the paper. This research paper was supported by the AfDec Strategic Advocacy Fund.

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Freedom of Expression in Zimbabwe

This research was commissioned by MISA Zimbabwe as part of its project which was supported under the AfDec Strategic Advocacy Fund. The research assesses the overall status of the right to freedom of expression in Zimbabwe. In making this exploration, the paper analyses how laws and policies in the country’s statutes infringe on the right to freedom of expression. The report assesses how the violation of freedom of expression affects journalistic practice and media freedom and highlights how regulation of the internet can shape trends and citizen behaviour on the internet.

 

Researcher:

Hlengiwe Dube

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Bridging the Digital Gender Gap in Uganda: An assessment of women’s rights online based on the principles of the African Declaration on Internet Rights and Freedoms

This study conducted by the Women of Uganda Network (WOUGNET) assesses the status of women’s rights online in Uganda based on five of the key principles of the African Declaration on Internet Rights and Freedoms, namely internet access and affordability, marginalised groups and groups at risk, right to information, right to privacy and data protection, and gender equality. In its paper, WOUGNET explores the digital gender divide and its impact on gender inequalities in Uganda. To remedy these structural disparities, WOUGNET highlights key actions and recommendations for bridging the digital gender gap that government leaders, civil society and other relevant stakeholders should consider in ongoing debates and processes for the adoption and amendment of internet-related policies. The paper emphasises the importance of incorporating a gender lens in understanding the effects of public policies on women’s daily lives in Uganda. The study was supported by the African Declaration on Internet Rights and Freedoms Strategic Advocacy Fund.

Feature Image: Courtesy of Pickist.com

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The promotion of human rights online through the Digital Rights Senegal website

The website Sénégal Droits Numériques (Digital Rights Senegal), created by the ICT Users Associations (ASUTIC), is a useful resource for a wide range of internet governance stakeholders, and in particular civil society organisations. The website offers a variety of tools to promote an understanding of human rights online, their protection and promotion. Despite progressive moves made by the government to adopt several internet laws in Senegal from as far back as 2008, it is apparent that several laws contain provisions that violate the exercise of human rights both offline and online. This website seeks to increase participation of stakeholders in Senegal’s internet governance processes. ASUTIC received a grant under the African Declaration on Internet Rights and Freedoms Strategic Advocacy Fund.

 

PIC Courtesy Of: occupy.com | Senegal and Yan Marre

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Statement on internet shutdown in Togo

A coalition of some 35 civil society organisations has written to several international bodies including the African Union and the United Nations Human Rights Council over the recent internet shutdown in Togo. Signatories to the letter include Paradigm Initiative, Reporters Without Borders, World Wide Web Foundation, Access Now, Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) and Ghanaian Centre of PEN International, the Association for Progressive Communications (APC) and members Collaboration on International ICT Policy for East and Southern Africa (CIPESA), Fantsuam Foundation, and Kenya ICT Action Network (KICTANet). The Coalition calls on the international bodies “to bring a halt to the spate of Internet shutdowns in Africa and to publicly declare your commitment to this effort.

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Overcoming gender-based digital exclusion in northern Nigeria: A strategy document

By Center for Information Technology and Development (CITAD), December 2016

Although in a number of countries the gender dimension of the digital divide has been bridged, this is not so in Nigeria where there is huge differential between men and women in terms of access and use of the internet. Within the country, it is worse in the states in the northern parts of the country. This is due to a number of factors including culture, religion, education and attitude.

In an effort to understand this and to develop appropriate strategies for digital inclusion of women in the region, CITAD undertook a pilot research aimed to understand the factors that inhibit the effective use of the internet by women in the north. This paper is part of the research undertaken in Bauchi and Keno, with support of APC, which funded the project with a subgrant.

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State of Internet Freedom in Africa 2016 - Case Studies from Select Countries on Strategies African Governments Use to Stifle Citizens’ Digital Rights

The report presents the findings of a study on what governments are doing to inhibit citizens’ access to ICT, for example content blocks, censorship, filtering, infrastructure control, law-making, court cases; how governments are using ICT activity and data to monitor citizens; and how government bodies and functionaries are using propaganda, impersonation, threats, cloning, and other tactics to shape online content in their favour.

Full country reports are available for ten countries: Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe. The research was conducted as part of CIPESA’s OpenNet Africa initiative (www.opennetafrica.org), which monitors and promotes internet freedom in Africa.

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Much ado about nothing? Zero rating in the African context

A fresh, public-interested assessment of the zero-rating of certain applications (apps) and platforms in the African mobile prepaid environment is overdue. This policy paper examines the issue of zero-rating within the contexts of the range of discounted and dynamically-priced African mobile network operator (MNO) products, and the priority public policy issues facing the continent in relation to the Internet. The research is based on a four country assessment-Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa.

The key research – and indeed policy – issue underlying this paper is the extent to which African MNO zero-rating strategies for OTT services produce pro-poor outcomes, i.e., the extent to which these strategies enhance affordable access to the Internet. In addressing this question, this paper draws on a combination of the limited empirical fragments in the debate on zero-rating and the extensive pricing data collected across 50 African countries by RIA.

Authors: Alison Gillwald, Chenai Chair, Ariel Futter (South Africa), Kweku Koranteng (Ghana), Fola Odufuwa (Nigeria) and John Walubengo (Kenya).

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State of Internet Freedom in Uganda 2016 - Charting Patterns in the Strategies African Governments Use to Stifle Citizens’ Digital Rights

This research was carried out by the Collaboration on International ICT Policy for East and Southern Africa (CIPESA) as part of the OpenNet Africa initiative (www.opennetafrica.org), which monitors and promotes Internet freedom in Africa.

The report presents the findings of a study on what the government in Uganda is doing to inhibit citizens’ access to ICT, for example content blocks, censorship, filtering, infrastructure control, law-making, court cases; using ICT activity and data to monitor citizens; and how government bodies and functionaries are using propaganda, impersonation, threats, cloning, and other tactics to shape online content in their favour. Other country reports for Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe as well as a regional State of Internet Freedom in Africa 2016 report, are also available.

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State of Internet Freedom in Democratic Republic of the Congo 2016

This research was carried out by the Collaboration on International ICT Policy for East and Southern Africa (CIPESA) as part of the OpenNet Africa initiative (www.opennetafrica.org), which monitors and promotes Internet freedom in Africa.

The report presents the findings of a study on what the government in Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is doing to inhibit citizens’ accessto ICT, for example content blocks, censorship, filtering, infrastructure control, law-making, court cases; using ICT activity and data to monitor citizens; and how government bodies and functionaries are using propaganda, impersonation, threats, cloning, and
other tactics to shape online content in their favour. Other country reports for Burundi, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe as well as a regional State of Internet Freedom in Africa 2016 report, are also available.

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