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Thursday, December 12, 2013
Trinidad & Tobago Guardian Online
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Advancing Caribbean Internet governance
Internet-related technologies play an increasingly significant role in the development of Caribbean economies and society. From online education, e-commerce and e-government to online social networks, government cyber-snooping, WikiLeaks and cybercrime, the Internet is impacting every facet of modern life. Yet, there is limited Caribbean participation in international fora shaping Internet governance.
The good news is this is changing. More individuals and organisations are getting involved and playing a role in the evolution of the Internet here at home and even across the globe.
One organisation playing a significant role in advancing the Caribbean’s Internet governance agenda is the Caribbean Telecommunications Union (CTU). The CTU is an intergovernmental organisation with a mandate to facilitate the development of the information and communications (ICT) sector in the Caribbean.
In 2005, through the combined efforts of the CTU and the Caricom secretariat, the Caribbean was first in the world to hold a regional Internet governance forum. That meeting, held in Guyana, marked the first coordinated effort by the Caribbean to develop regional, multi-stakeholder frameworks to deal with the growing influence of the Internet on Caribbean economies and society.
The organisation’s efforts over the past several years to increase public and government awareness of the Internet governance issues that impact the region have been consistent and fruitful.
In addition to support from governments and Internet advocates from across the region, the CTU has also managed to secure support from major international bodies including, the Internet Society (ISOC), the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN) and the Latin American and Caribbean Network Information Centre (LACNIC).
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