[Telecentres] Going forward

Don Cameron donc at internode.on.net
Mon Sep 27 08:22:00 BST 2004

By coordinating representation to WSIS do we potentially place ourselves in
danger of being perceived as just another extraneous group of service
providers of no real importance? - a group of fragmented individuals
offering nothing more than input to be evaluated by what is in truth a
rather insignificant and little known about process?


My thoughts on this may not be shared by all, but to me Telecentre's are the
Information Society - We are the ones at the fore of poverty alleviation
through ICT's; we are the ones providing education, a voice and opportunity
to the worlds impoverished masses through access to skills and ICT's. We are
also the providers most closely linked to communities, business and
governments through affiliation, the services we offer and the very nature
of thousands of physical points of access dispersed throughout the globe.
Many of us are funded by government, industry and community. Our depth and
spread far exceeds that of WSIS, our voice extends well beyond the limited
representation offered by WSIS.  


Rather than focusing on a few individuals providing input into WSIS, should
we not be recommending en-masse that if WSIS truly intends to achieve
relevance, should it not extend itself beyond the anonymity of a few
physical conference venues by utilizing the Telecentre movement to actually
join the information society? We do not need to present to WSIS, there is
little to be gained. however WSIS does need us if it ever intends to become
more than just another closed-door bureaucratic think-tank offering nothing
of value.


Perhaps we could discuss how we can best help WSIS - as a process it does
offer some value however it clearly needs to extend itself if the desired
outcomes are ever to be realized. 


Rgds, Don 

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