Bytes for All
May 2008

Bytes for All

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India votes against Microsoft's OXML 

India voted against Microsoft's OXML (Open eXtended Markup Language) being adopted as a standard, along with existing ODF (Open Document Format), by the Geneva-based international standards body, ISO (International Organisation for Standardisation), where representatives of member countries are slated to decide on the matter by March 29. The decision was taken at a standards committee of the Bureau of Indian Standards.

Indian Government decides against curbing piracy

In what is viewed as a setback for the film industry's efforts to stop piracy, the Indian Government rejected the recommendations of the draft disk policy on grounds that it would lead to the creation of  inspectors, and thus go against the grain of liberalisation policy. For the past few months, the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting had been examining the draft optical disc law to check film piracy.

Grameenphone's CellBazaar wins 'Asian Telecom Innovation of the Year'

CellBazaar – an innovative market-access service from Grameenphone Ltd., has been voted 'Asian Telecom Innovation of the Year' during the Telecom Asia Awards 2008. The annual Telecom Asia Awards has been taking place since 1998. This is the first time Telecom Asia has introduced the 'Innovation of the Year' award, and Grameenphone CellBazaar is proud to be the first receiver of this prestigious award.,

Wikipedia Founder Proposes Support for Open Textbooks

Wikipedia co-founder James Sanger put out an appeal last week in the Journal of Higher Education to donate money to create textbooks online that would be free for children in grades K-12 worldwide.

IOSN hosts conference in Chennai with a strong focus on FOSS and FOSS-based solutions

The South Asia Node of International Open Source Network (IOSN), along with Practical Action, recently organised a Round Table Conference on 'ICT for Poverty Reduction' in Chennai. The discussion was designed to have a strong focus on Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) and FOSS-based solutions. The conference saw participation from organisations such as the NIC (National Informatics Centre), MSSRF (M S Swaminathan Research Foundation), CEERI (Central Electronics Engineering Research Institute) and NRCFOSS (National Resource Centre on FOSS).

Drishtipat launches business challenge
Drishtipat, a volunteer organisation working on promoting human rights and social in Bangladesh, today announced the launch of the Challenge 2008. The Drishtipat Challenge invites the general public to submit proposals on business projects for the opportunity to receive a loan of up to US$5,000 per project. While it is recommended that the project serves a social development objective, the primary goal is to create economically viable businesses that can stand on their own and grow. 

Call for papers – 2008 GigaNet Symposium – December 2008, Hyderabad

The Global Internet Governance Academic Network (GigaNet) is a scholarly community that promotes the development of Internet governance as a recognised, interdisciplinary field of study and facilitates informed dialogue on policy issues and related matters between scholars and governments, international organisations, the private sector, and civil society organisations. The third GigaNet Annual Symposium will be held on December 2, 2008, in Hyderabad, India, the day before the 3rd IGF (Internet Governance Forum) meeting. Attendance at the Symposium will be open to all and free of charge. There is a call for papers from scholars/academicians who are interested in presenting bonafide research papers at the conference.

Inauguration of Bangladesh Telecentre Reference Desk

Under the umbrella of Bangladesh Telecentre Network (BTN), 'Telecentre Reference Desk' was inaugurated on March 30, 2008. Telecentres in Bangladesh are regularly struggling with numerous computer related and other technical problems. Reference Desk is equipped to provide expert support online and offline. The desk will also link local technical support service providers with telecentres where only advice is not enough.

The Internet Alert : A new online publication

The Internet Alert is published on a weekly basis. It covers developments related to Internet Freedom and Internet Governance. Links, events and articles mentioned are summarised weekly from the Internet Freedom Bookmarks site – that can be accessed at:
To subscribe to the alert :

New Berkman Study Mapping Iran's Blogosphere

Berkman Center for Internet and Society announced a major research initiative from the Internet and  Democracy project. Mapping Iran's Online Public: Politics and Culture in the Persian Blogosphere utilises a unique methodology that blends computational analysis and human coding to investigate the contours and scope of the discussions taking place in the Persian blogosphere. The study builds on data generously shared by Morningside Analytics and on analyses and input from Persian-speaking researchers. Iran experts and the Berkman community provided feedback and criticism throughout the research.

Launch of Information Society Watch

Close to a year after the launch of Information Society Watch (IS Watch), IT for Change is happy to announce the launch of Information Society Watch

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