Impact of icts on women s participation in public and political life
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Impact of ICTs on women's participation in public and political life. Association for Progressive Communications Women ’ s Rights Programme, January 2013 . Who we are / what we do . International network of organisations using ICTs for social justice – 43 members around the world

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Impact of ICTs on women's participation in public and political life

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Impact of ICTs on women's participation in public and political life

Association for Progressive Communications Women’s Rights Programme, January 2013


Who we are / what we do

  • International network of organisations using ICTs for social justice – 43 members around the world

  • Womens rights programme & ICT policy programme

  • Women’s rights programme – violence against women, sexual rights, evaluation


What is the issue

  • Information and Communication Technologies ICTs are not gender neutral – produced, used and distributed in a context of unequal power relations

  • For marginalised groups with access, ICTs present possibilities to construct, deconstruct and reconfigure both their own identities and the structures – whether government, media or social – within which they live

  • ICTs also enable new forms of discrimination, violence and exclusion


What are our entry points?

  • Women and marginalised communities are a key interest group in how the internet is governed, yet are are largely absent from spaces where decisions are made

  • When we access the internet it is with all of our civil and political rights intact

  • Norms and values offline are reflected online including – in discrimination and exclusion and in responses


Shifts and nuances

  • Internet governance

  • Anonymity

  • Privacy and consent

  • New actors

  • Defining harm

  • No recognition for extended notions / extended definitions of ‘personhood’

  • Interaction as workers, content producers, ‘ordinary’ users


Opening new possibilities

  • Public participation – Tahrir bodyguards, rape of black lesbians in SA

  • Organising – Meem

  • Subversion – Pink Chaadi, Uprising of Women in Arab World

  • Expanding citizenship

  • Performing identity, negotiating restrictions


Closing down spaces

  • Shut downs – DRC October 2012

  • Censorship, regulation and pornography

  • Misogyny and hate speech

  • Rape videos, privacy and consent

  • WHRDs – Egypt, Uganda

  • Defining harm, mobilising anxiety

  • Double standards of prosecution


Who are the actors

  • Individual users

    - norms and values

    (Technical community; Opus Dei - .fam)

  • Private sector

    - no transparency on regulations & enforcement

    - tracking technologies & privacy control

    - privatisation of access

  • State

    - protection vs rights framework


Recommendations

  • Extending definitions of personhood

  • Expanded debate on ‘right to forget’

  • Engaging private sector

  • Engage in internet governance eg IGF

  • Indicators for CEDAW report cards

  • Post-2015 development agenda

  • WSIS +10


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