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Tag Archives: Internet

Explaining why 32 million Indonesian Facebook users are not counted by their government as Internet users

Samarajiva_IGF_2014

My previous post on Internet v Facebook users elicited a lot of responses. We also went back and relooked at the numbers carefully. The Myanmar census numbers came in (after 30 years?). Some changes were made. Here are some responses. Many people thought it was nonsensical to claim that Internet users < Facebook users. We […]

More Facebook users than Internet users in South East Asia?

Internet & Facebook users, 2014

I have always been intrigued by the differences between South and South East Asian countries. We saw this over and over again when we did the Teleuse@BOP surveys. But playing around with some numbers for Facebook users in four South and four SE Asian countries, I was astounded. In all the SE Asian countries, there […]

LIRNEasia at Internet Governance Forum 2014, Istanbul, September 2-5, 2014 (Part 1)

Setting the Scene Focus Session – Tuesday, September 2 • 11:00am – 12:30pm Sub-themes for IGF 2014 a) POLICIES ENABLING ACCESS Speaker: Rohan Samarajiva, LirneAsia, Sri Lanka Rohan will provide a bird’s eye view on progress and challenges in achieving affordable access for all. He will highlight controversial issues that came up in the last […]

Nothing is better than something, or the paternalistic approach to the Internet

Well before zero rating, poor people in Indonesia were telling us how they used Facebook, a few minutes after telling us they were not Internet users. This seemed like a choice they had made. We reported it, and actually made it a part of the argument we used to beat back the misbegotten effort by […]

China Internet use from mobiles overtakes use from computers

I wonder what Carlos Afonso, who was so upset when I said at IGF2009 in Sharm El Sheikh that most people in developing countries would be accessing the Internet over mobile devices, would have to say now? China had 632 million Internet users at the end of June, an increase of 14.4 million since the […]

China’s Internet model spreading in Asia?

A fascinating interview with the Chinese financier Zhang Lei by the Financial Times highlights the need to learn about and keep up with China’s ICT industry. Now Zhang is taking the Chinese template offshore. “The Chinese model, which is mobile-driven, is more suited to emerging markets than the US model, which is desktop driven,” he […]

US experts envisage a gloomy future for Internet; but perhaps they miss the big picture

The New York Times reporter seems to do a better job than the experts queried by the Pew Research Center on foretelling the future on the Internet. Just as important is the kind of changes to the Internet and content that no one seems to have talked about. The experts seem to think of the […]

Iranian net sophisticates and a refreshingly candid Minister of Culture

I saw first hand the futility of the Mullahs’ efforts to prevent Internet access by Iranian youth when I was in Tehran at the height of the Arab Spring. But what is new is that it’s the Minister of Culture who is highlighting the hypocrisy and futility. According to “The Iran Primer,” a website and […]

A net neutrality parable

I wrote this on the flight back from the Baku Internet Governance Forum of 2012, where we did serious damage to the ETNO campaign to introduce the “sending party network pays” principle into an international treaty document governing relations between telcos and companies such as Google (so-called OTTs). I make it a habit to try […]

Myanmar Deputy Minister on the challenges of meeting ever-increasing demand

Thaung Tin, Myanmar’s Deputy Minister of Communications and Information Technology, who formerly chaired KMD Group, a local computer training company, is a key figure in the ongoing telecom reforms. Here, he responds to questions from a journalist about the challenges MPT, the government-owned company, and the new licensees face. User rates are always increasing in […]

Google’s potentially disruptive drones

Last week in Vanuatu, a whole bunch of satellite providers and one builder of undersea cables were asked by Dean Bubley of Disruptive Innovations whether they had any thoughts on the potential disruptions posed by the various tech solutions to Internet connectivity being bruited about. They were not worried in one voice. Perhaps the news […]

Internet subscribers and users: What is the difference and why does it matter?

The 2013 Central Bank of Sri Lanka report is being sourced for the claim that one in ten Sri Lankans is on the Internet. But this number comes from adding apples and oranges: most individually used mobile broadband connections and mostly collectively used fixed connections. Now with 4G and 3G dongles around in large numbers, […]

Korea no model to emulate

We’ve been talking up the need to look beyond Korea as THE model to emulate because their vaunted successes have been achieved with massive long-term subsidies that are difficult for most countries to replicate. But here are some other less known features of the Korean Internet environment that one would not want to emulate: Every […]

Adventures in superfast Internet, Chattanooga Choo Choo

In 1969, this mid-sized city in the middle of the US was named the most polluted city in the US. Some four decades later, it’s one of the few cities where you can get 1 GB Internet for USD 70 a month. This balanced article in the NYT, lays out the lessons. But so far, […]

Internet balkanization, courtesy of NSA

One of the reasons we opposed the ill-considered efforts by ETNO and others to impose sending-party-network-pays charging on Internet traffic was the danger of balkanization: differential access to the Internet from different countries or splinternet. We beat back that effort in a temporary alliance with the US State Department, but little did we know that […]

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