Inside the digital society
David Souter writes a weekly column for APC, looking at different aspects of the information society, development and rights. David’s pieces take a fresh look at many of the issues that concern APC and its members, with the aim of provoking discussion and debate. Issues covered include internet governance and sustainable development, human rights and the environment, policy, practice and the use of ICTs by individuals and communities.
Two years ago, the assumption was that the pandemic and ensuing lockdowns would have lasting impacts on digitalisation – that they would accelerate the process by which offline turned to online, increase its pace and shift the way we do things towards digital alternatives. But has this happened as much as was expected?
Fraud is now the commonest crime in the UK, and most of it is online. Cybercrime and cybersecurity have become some of the biggest problems in digital policy development, and we need to think broader and listen to victims to be able to respond to them.
A new paper says that the internet and its governance is now suffering from resistance to change, paranoia and a lack of strategic direction and accountability, among other problems. Some thoughts and critiques on the paper's conclusions and recommendations, as well as three ideas that it misses.
Many of the assumptions about the digital society made in its early days have proved unreliable. A look at how policymakers need a much better knowledge base if they are to help maximise opportunities and mitigate threats.
Our columnist reflects on five issues for the wider internet environment raised by Elon Musk’s planned acquisition of Twitter, including for human rights, freedom of expression and corporate accountability.
Digital cooperation will be crucial if we want ICTs to focus on the public good, and this column outlines some opportunities, threats, and paths forward for this.
A poor understanding of digital inequality continues to lead to inadequate and counterproductive policies. This column discusses six themes that could improve policymakers’ understanding of the nuances behind this persistent inequality and disconnect.
I’ve thought long and hard about what it’s possible to write as war rains down on the heart of Europe. I’ve decided to revisit three fundamental questions about the internet and digital development, and ask if we need to reconsider what we mean by them.
Should we be cyber-optimists or cyber-pessimists about our digital society and its future? Some new thoughts and updates on how I was thinking about this five years ago.
Cultural expression matters to how we experience life, and we need to reflect more on how digital society is impacting it and what that tells us about other changes as well.