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A Lens on the Information Society

9th February 2004

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LensIn December 2003, a controversial World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) took place in Geneva to produce an action plan on how information and communication technology should best work in a globalised world.

This 15-minute film, A Lens on the Information Society, follows two young video journalists, one from India and one from Uruguay, as they turn their cameras on the people and issues involved in the debate over the future of the information society.

Monjima Sinha works for a local television station in Calcutta and this was the first time sheíd travelled outside India. Claudia Abend, from Uruguay, is just finishing a degree in media and social communications. They spent a week in Geneva looking at this summit from their own perspectives and getting to grips with the issues.

The World Summit on the Information Summit opened with many people and organisations disagreeing with the official summit agenda. As a result, a parallel event, the ICT for Development platform, was held alongside it where members of civil society could get their voice heard. Broadcasters, scientists, communications campaigners and others also organised separate events. It was a communications jamboree that Monjima and Claudia would find difficult to fathom.

The film follows the two journalists as they talk to people attending the summit, interview media experts on communication rights and community media, cover Kofi Annan meeting the inventor of the web, Tim Berners Lee, and track down a group that was banned from the summit for being too critical.

A Lens on the Information Society also shows some of the problems the two journalists faced in covering an event of this size for the first time. It's their personal experience and coverage which resulted in both of them feeling that while they'd learned a lot personally and professionally, they were still unsure whether the event itself had achieved very much.

The film was made by Monjima Sinha, Claudia Abend and Rachel Stabb of OneWorld TV, as part of a video project for young journalists sponsored by Fondation pour Homme, OneWorld Latin America and OneWorld South Asia. View the stories Monjima and Claudia filmed at WSIS here.


OneWorld TV
Interactive video website tackling global issues.
UK Online - Get Started
Is a government-led drive to help everyone make the most of the internet. It's Get Started campaign, running in 6,000 centres across the UK, aims to help people who have never used the internet before get online.

Follow the links to view similar stories:
International, Justice/Citizenship

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