Groups Form International FoundationTo Bridge Digital Divide
WASHINGTONThe U.S.-based Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT) and Belgium-based Internews organizations last month announced the launch of the Global Internet Policy Initiative (GIPI). The GIPI is a foundation established to assist developing countries on enacting policies that narrow the digital divide. Jim Dempsey, CDT’s director of technology, told The Washington Post that “there’s a lot of confusion out there about what it takes in terms of policy to create an environment where the Internet becomes affordable, widely available and can be used for economic growth and human development.” The GIPI is expected to educate and advise government policymakers and grass-roots advocates on a range of Internet policy issues, including universal service, privacy, technical standards, licensing, digital signatures, content controls and the domain name system, according to Dempsey.The coalition has already hired 10 full-time “country coordinators” who are familiar with the laws and languages of the countries in which they are stationed. Project funders are varied, including Microsoft, AOL Time Warner, the Soros Foundation and the Markle Foundation. For more information, visit <www.gipiproject.org>.
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