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West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI);
In contemporary society, social media has made access to information easier. Social media has the potential to fundamentally change the character of our social lives, both on an interpersonal and a community level (Baruah, 2012: 1). It is obvious that social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, MySpace, Skype among others, are used extensively for the purpose of communication. One of the most important advantages of the use of social media is the online sharing of knowledge and information among different groups of people. Online tools and technology have facilitated communication in countless ways. They have also influenced our perceptions and attitudes towards communication.
Pew Charitable Trusts;
This report from the Pew Charitable Trusts highlights practices for state programs aimed at expanding broadband access to un- and underserved areas.
Based on interviews with more than three hundred representatives of state broadband programs, Internet service providers, local governments, and broadband coalitions, the report identified five promising and mutually reinforcing practices: stakeholder outreach and engagement at both the state and local levels; a policy framework with well-defined goals that connects broadband to other policy priorities; planning and capacity building in support of broadband infrastructure projects; funding and operations through grant programs, with an emphasis on accountability and data collection; and program evaluation and evolution to ensure that lessons learned inform the next iteration of goals and activities. The study explores how nine states — California, Colorado, Maine, Minnesota, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wisconsin — have adapted and implemented different combinations of those practices to close gaps in broadband access.
This report seeks to investigate existing research about crowdfunding for nonprofit organizations using the lens of #GivingTuesday as a way to focus on the questions, concerns, and potential for this relatively new tool for giving to nonprofit organizations. Crowdfunding is broadly defined as "the raising of capital from a large and diverse pool of donors via online platforms" (Davies, 2014). While many forms of crowdfunding exist, including funding of for-profit projects, businesses, and peer-to-peer giving, this report focuses on crowdfunding for nonprofit organizations exclusively.
Dangerous Speech Project;
Every day, internet users encounter hateful and dangerous speech online, and some of them choose to respond directly in order to refute or undermine it. We call this counterspeech. Only a few studies have attempted to measure the effectiveness of counterspeech directly, and as far as we know, this is the first review of relevant literature.
We've collected and reviewed related articles from a range of fields including political science, sociology, countering violent extremism, and computational social science. These articles do not all use the term "counterspeech," but they shed light on various features of successful counterspeech, for example, qualities that make speakers/authors more influential in online interactions or the extent to which pro- and anti-social behavior is contagious on the internet.
Open Society Foundations;
The digital revolution is radically changing every aspect of human life in the 21st century and it's essential that regulators address the challenges this transformation brings. The new European Commission should look beyond digital single market issues, and focus on creating new rights-based policies and regulations based on freedom, democracy, equality, and rule of law to ensure that existing offline rights are protected online.
Open Society Foundations;
Concern over online interference in elections is now widespread—from the fallout of the Cambridge Analytica scandal to the pernicious effects messaging apps have had in elections in Kenya or Brazil. Yet regulatory and monitoring efforts have lagged behind in addressing the challenges of how public opinion can be manipulated online, and its impact on elections. The phenomenon of online electoral interference is global. It affects established democracies, countries in transition, and places where freedom of expression and access to information are tightly controlled.
But fundamental questions of what should be legal and illegal in digital political communication have yet to be answered in order to extend the rule of electoral law from the offline to the online. Answering these questions would help determine the right scope for online election observation, too. This scoping report explains why social media is one of the elements of a democratic, rule of law–based state that observer groups should monitor. It aggregates experience from diverse civil society and nongovernmental initiatives that are innovating in this field, and sets out questions to guide the development of new mandates for election observers. The internet and new digital tools are profoundly reshaping political communication and campaigning. But an independent and authoritative assessment of the impact of these effects is wanting. Election observation organizations need to adapt their mandate and methodology in order to remain relevant and protect the integrity of democratic processes.
Carnegie Corporation of New York;
This volume focuses on the impact on artificial intelligence (AI) on nuclear strategy. It is the first instalment of a trilogy that explores regional perspectives and trends related to the impact that recent advances in AI could have nuclear weapons and doctrines, strategic stability and nuclear risk. It assembles the views of 14 experts from the Euro-Atlantic community on why and how machine learning and autonomy might become the focus of an armed race among nuclear-armed states; and how the adoption of these technologies might impact their calculation of strategic stability and nuclear risk at the regional level and trans-regional level.
Fondation Internet Nouvelle Generation (FING);
This report suggests 50 new ways to connect the digital and the ecological transitions. Published in March 2019, it targets innovators, public actors, companies and research organisations and aims to inspire their agendas for innovation, research, R&D and public action.
This publication was produced by Fing as part of its Transitions² program, in partnership with ADEME, Iddri, Inria, GreenIT.fr, the Conseil National du Numérique and Explor'ables.
Worldwide, small-scale fisheries (SSFs) contribute over half of global fish and invertebrate catch and generate employment for 90% of those working in the fishing capture industry, the majority of whom live in developing countries. Despite their importance, most of the world's estimated 10,000 SSFs are data deficient. Community data is critical to understanding fish stocks, and evaluating fisheries management policies, particularly in remote areas. This pilot study explores the potential for smartphones and the Open Data Kit software to assist in the collection of shark landings data in southwest Madagascar, where sustainable fisheries management is critical to economic and food security. The pilot builds on a previous study of participatory data collection using paper notebooks (2003–2016), which continued in eight villages throughout the smartphone trial (2013–2016), allowing comparisons in speed, accuracy and user experience to be drawn. Initial challenges, which included limited electricity supplies to charge the smartphones; typing errors caused by wet hands; and interpretation difficulties, were overcome during the trial with additional training and data accuracy improved as a result, with only 5% fewer records recorded on phones vs. paper notebooks by 2015. One major challenge - limited mobile network coverage – often prevented data from being uploaded from phones to an online database, meaning manual data extraction was required, with associated travel costs. With appropriate training, smartphones show promise as a useful and accurate tool for participatory fisheries data collection. However, this method may be better suited to regions with stronger mobile coverage.
How the multibillion-dollar business behind online advertising could reinvent public media, revitalize journalism and strengthen democracy
Carnegie UK Trust;
Switched On brings together recent research and evidence about key issues related to digital inclusion, with a particular focus on children and young people. Digital access is complex picture with multiple factors driving, compounding and impacting those who are included or excluded.
The report explores a number of features of the digital inclusion debate including analysing the components that comprise appropriate digital access, examines the impacts around a lack of access, maps exclusion factors in the UK and outlines the current policy and practice landscape, including successful interventions.
This is the first comprehensive study regarding the state of automated decision-making in Europe. Experts have looked at the situation at the EU level but also in 12 Member States: Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands Poland, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and the UK. They assessed not only the political discussions and initiatives in these countries but also present a section "ADM in Action" for all states, listing examples of automated decision-making already in use.