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COMMENT is WACC’s take on the rapidly changing world of communications and social media. The aim is to highlight topics that are of more than passing interest and likely to have a positive or negative impact on people’s lives. Topics may be political, social, economic or cultural in scope. Readers are invited to comment on COMMENT and to express their own views – which will be monitored only to prevent derogatory or offensive remarks. Topics include communication rights and wrongs, shrinking communication spaces, traditional and social media, the Internet of Things, and anything else that grabs our attention!
WACC is an international non-governmental organization that builds on communication rights in order to promote social justice. WACC believes that everyone has the right to communicate, in the same way that they have the right to food, shelter, and security. through strategic alliances. WACC aims to be a catalyst for positive change for the common good, sharing information, knowledge, and experience in the field of communications worldwide.

Media puppetry in Poland

08/11/19 | (0) Comments |

Here is an example of why media independence is vital to people everywhere.

In Poland, the ruling nationalist Law and Justice party (PiS) alleges the media are controlled by Germany and says foreign control should be stopped. The real aim is to bring the media into line with the politics of a country whose ranking in the annual World Press Freedom Index published by Reporters Without Borders has fallen every year that PiS has been in power – from 18th to 59th.

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It takes a village to keep children safe both online and offline

03/11/19 | (0) Comments |

Children now represent one third of all Internet users. This number is expected to increase once developing countries – where most of the world’s children live –become digitized. This is both exciting and worrisome. Exciting because it has been established that connectivity opens doors to new educational experiences, skills, and other benefits. Worrisome because of what we know and experience about the Internet’s darker side.

 
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Measures to tackle disinformation and propaganda in Europe

28/10/19 | (0) Comments |

Recently, the European parliament voted in favour of stronger EU measures aimed at countering “highly dangerous” Russian disinformation and at upgrading the EU’s anti-propaganda unit.

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Media reform is alive and kicking!

21/10/19 | (0) Comments |

In September 2019, in a victory for the principles underlying media democracy, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit rebuked the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) by overturning the agency’s latest attempts to eliminate long-standing limits on local-media ownership.

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Protest in the digital realm

14/10/19 | (0) Comments |

Digital technology is a growing force in today’s world. Since advocacy groups during the Vietnam War became incensed by televised images of suffering and torture, information and communication technology has changed the way we interact with the world around us.

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Media independence: A fundamental question

07/10/19 | (0) Comments |

It’s surprising that the issue of “fake news” took so long to raise its head. Deliberate misinformation and bias have been around for as long as journalism itself – more than 400 years by some accounts.

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How the 5G wireless dividend can help connect those left behind

30/09/19 | (0) Comments |

Private, public, and civil society actors should work together to encourage more sustainable financing of universal access efforts

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Political accountability in the age of Twitter

23/09/19 | (0) Comments |

On 19 September, Veteran BBC journalist John Humphreys hosted his last “Today” radio programme after 32 years. Known for his aggressive interviewing on a morning news programme that for decades has often set the tone and issues for the day’s news in Britain, he used his last programme to criticise current politicians for avoiding scrutiny by the media.

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When fact-checking isn’t about ‘right’ or ‘wrong’

16/09/19 | (0) Comments |

The rise of “fake news” charges and deliberate disinformation have  led to an important counter effort: fact-checking. News agencies, civil society organisations, and concerned individuals have taken on the fight for “truth” – assessing political claims and struggling to prevent misinformation guiding our decisions and behaviour.

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Children’s communication rights need better protection

09/09/19 | (0) Comments |

Google should have known better!

An Associated Press piece in The Guardian newspaper (“YouTube fined $170m for collecting children's personal data”, 4 September 2019) notes a serious violation of children’s right to privacy:

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