[Telecentres] Re: Basic Telecentre Items/ICT Definition

Don Cameron donc at internode.on.net
Mon Oct 4 15:44:12 BST 2004

Hi Joel, David and all,

The points raised certainly do 'hit the nail on the head' as far as
identifying a need to ascertain the very diverse array of reasons that
Telecentre's exist. As I understand the purpose of this forum (as distinct
from the purpose of Telecentre's), we as a movement have been asked to
provide input and support to the WSIS declaration and plan of action (please
correct me if I am wrong about this).

If I may be so bold as to suggest a few preliminaries leading from recent

1/ In order for Telecentre input to be real and recognized as such it must
be representative. The ICT arena has a great many individuals and interest
groups seeking input into WSIS however this is not the forum for these
groups. If the intent is for Telecentre's to provide input we must firstly
define what a Telecentre is, so we ensure that input (at least on this forum
and by any elected representatives) is coming from Telecentre's and based on
the many years of experience enjoyed by the Telecentre movement. I believe
this is one of the reasons we were formed as a group. 

2/ Defining what Telecentre's may be used for is possibly unnecessary beyond
the constraints of the WSIS declaration (we have already been advised that
we cannot provide input into the declaration itself and are limited by what
others have determined). I think the experience of this forum to date
highlights how Telecentre's can serve any number of purposes; many extending
well beyond the constraints of WSIS and ICT's - A true Telecentre is an
entity of the community. Yet even this definition may not be pertinent to
WSIS beyond our ability to deploy WSIS objectives.  

3/ Quite early in the development of this forum someone asked words to the
effect: "What exactly can WSIS offer the Telecentre movement and do we agree
with the stated aims and objectives of WSIS?" - To me this is the foremost
question underpinning our purpose on this forum. Telecentre's are what
Telecentre's are and WSIS is not about to change this... Do we agree with
the WSIS declaration? Are there areas we would seek to improve? Is WSIS
itself truly representative? What is WSIS offering to the Telecentre
movement in return for participation acknowledging we were not invited to
participate in the preliminaries? Do we en-masse wish to participate in and
support the objectives of WSIS, or do we wish to exert our influence to
foster greater participatory input before agreeing to offer such support? 

I do not profess to have the answers to any of these questions...

Rgds, Don  

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