Speak up on this important issue!
It is World Telecommunications Day tomorrow. The purpose of World Telecommunication and Information Society Day (WTISD), states the ITU website, is to help raise awareness of the possibilities that the use of the Internet and other information and communication technologies (ICT) can bring to societies and economies, as well as of ways to bridge the digital divide.
This year’s theme is an important one – “Protecting Children in Cyberspace. It aims at ensuring that children can safely access the Internet and its valuable resources without fear of falling prey to unscrupulous predators in cyberspace.
ITU calls upon all stakeholders (policy makers, regulators, operators and industry) to promote the adoption of policies and strategies that will protect children in cyberspace and promote their safe access to online resources, states the ITU website.
So what does this call to action entail? Mostly it involves creating awareness and having legislation and policy that focuses on protecting the rights of children in cyberspace.
Very briefly it calls upon Member states to:
- Create public awareness on the issues related to protecting children in cyberspace and to identify policies, best practices, tools and resources for adaptation/use in their countries.
- Support ongoing work aimed at developing Guidelines on protecting children online for policy makers and regulators.
- Identify risks and vulnerabilities to children in cyberspace as the Internet and other online resources continue to expand.
- Build resource repositories for common use
- Promote capacity building aimed at strengthening global response in protecting children as they venture into cyberspace.
So how is Pakistan commemmorating World Communication & Information Society Day? I received an invitation yesterday from the Ministry of IT in Islamabad asking me to join them in the WTISD celebrations at the Marriott in Islamabad. The programme consists of a Video message from the Secretary General of the ITU and a welcome address by my friend Pervaiz Iftikhar CEO of the USF. This will be followed by presentation on the theme by the Member (Telecom) and an address by the Federal Secretary IT Mr.Hifzur Rehman who is hosting the event.
Here is the message from Dr Hamadoun I. Touré, ITU Secretary-General, on the occasion of World Telecommunication and Information Society Day 2009.
Although I won’t be able to dash off to Islamabad tomorrow, I hope the Ministry will put up the videos of the presentations and talks on their website so that sharing takes place.
In addition, there is an initiative that has been launched by Super Technologies in Pakistan. I received a call from Suzanne Bowen VP of Super Technologies last night to tell me about what they are doing and to ask for my support. There is no-one I know who says ‘no’ to Suzanne. She is such a vibrant and enthusiastic lady that you want to be a part of anything she is associated with.
Anyway, I felt strongly that Suzanne was right and Pakistan should be actively involved in commemorating WTISD. The theme too is very close to my heart. I am copying below an email from Suzanne and I hope that all of you will actively participate.
Super Technologies, Inc. and several of its friends such as P@SHA, the government of Pakistan, Interconnect Partners, Multinet Private Ltd, SATC, Foresight Technologies, Gerry’s, the Computer Society of Pakistan and others invite you to participate in ITU’s World Telecom Day with the very important theme of Protecting Children in Cyberspace in a unique manner that will last for decades. For details on how to participate, go and view the invitation video and the blog.We are looking for those who are participating in World Telecom Day in Islamabad and other cities in Pakistan to record video of themselves, the Ministry, other companies, families, parents, entrepreneurs, and other individuals about Protecting Children in Cyberspace and then post the videos to http://www.youtube.com or http://www.viddler.com and be sure to tag the videos like this: world telecom day, pakistan, protecting children in cyberspace. Let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org what you do so that we can publicize further via blogs and press release.
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