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EU Council backs controversial copyright crackdown

- April 15, 2019 in copyright, eu, Featured, Internet, News, Policy

The Council of the European Union today backed a controversial copyright crackdown in a ‘deeply disappointing’ vote that could impact on all internet users. Six countries voted against the proposal which has been opposed by 5million people through a Europe-wide petition – Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Finland and Sweden.
Three more nations abstained, but the UK voted for the crackdown and there were not enough votes for a blocking minority. The proposal is expected to lead to the introduction of ‘filters’ on sites such as YouTube, which will automatically remove content that could be copyrighted. While entertainment footage is most likely to be affected, academics fear it could also restrict the sharing of knowledge, and critics argue it will have a negative impact on freedom of speech and expression online. EU member states will have two years to implement the law, and the regulations are still expected to affect the UK despite Brexit. The Open Knowledge Foundation said the battle is not over, with the European elections providing an opportunity to elect ‘open champions’. Catherine Stihler, chief executive of the Open Knowledge Foundation, said:
“This is a deeply disappointing result which will have a far-reaching and negative impact on freedom of speech and expression online. The controversial crackdown was not universally supported, and I applaud those national governments which took a stand and voted against it. We now risk the creation of a more closed society at the very time we should be using digital advances to build a more open world where knowledge creates power for the many, not the few.

But the battle is not over. Next month’s European elections are an opportunity to elect a strong cohort of open champions at the European Parliament who will work to build a more open world.”

OKFI is looking for passionate contributors to its core operations

- March 28, 2019 in Featured, Jobs, recruiting

Hello OKFInauts! We at OKFI have been busy restructuring ourselves ever since the successful launch of MyData Global ry. We’ve specified some core roles that need passionate, competent people to help the cause of open knowledge in Finland. OKFI can offer a moderate compensation that scales with our operational volume.
OKFInauts at an OKFI retreat
We have four roles:
  • Sysadmin, already filled since 2018
  • Communicator, to be filled now
  • Project support, to be filled now
  • Treasurer, to be filled now
All these roles will have autonomy to fulfill their purpose the best way they see fit. We don’t count working hours, just expect certain results in return for the monetary renumeration. You can find the role domain descriptions in this Google Drive folder. There’s also a spreadsheet that estimates the monthly and yearly renumerations for the roles, based on currently active projects. Feel free to add comments if there is something you want to ask about or improve. And of course, if you feel like you could chip in with your time and awesomeness, do let us know. Message the chair Tarmo Toikkanen on our slack, or send email to tarmo@okf.fi. Please be prompt, these positions are filled as soon as we have suitable people to take them on. The post OKFI is looking for passionate contributors to its core operations appeared first on Open Knowledge Finland.

OKFI oli mukana Oodin All Digital Week -tapahtumassa

- March 28, 2019 in Featured

Open Knowledge Finland oli mukana keskustakirjasto Oodin All Digital Week 2019 -tapahtumassa tiistaina 26.3. Eurooppalaisen kampanjaviikon tarkoituksena on tarjota kansalaisille ikkuna digitaaliseen maailmaan. Monipuolista ohjelmaa oli tarjolla kaikenikäisille. OKFI:n  Mehalet Yared ja Zrinka “Zizi” Zvonarevic esittelivät järjestön toimintaa ja Anna “Ansku” Tuomainen piti 30 minuutin tietoiskun aiheesta “Kansalaisen digioikeudet”. Tietoiskussa esiteltiin EU:n tietosuoja-asetuksen (GDPR) tavallisen kansalaisen näkökulmasta ja antoi vinkkejä kuinka uusia oikeuksia voi toteuttaa jokapäiväisessä elämässä. Esittelypiste jaettiin yhdessä Wikimedia Suomen kanssa. Wikimedia on yleishyödyllinen yhdistys, joka edistää Internet-tietosanakirja Wikipedian sekä muiden Wikimedia Foundationin ylläpitämien palveluiden tuntemusta ja käyttöä sekä vapaan sisällön luontia ja levittämistä Suomessa. The post OKFI oli mukana Oodin All Digital Week -tapahtumassa appeared first on Open Knowledge Finland.

New report: Data journalism in Tanzania

- March 27, 2019 in Data Journalism, Featured, School of Data

Open Knowledge International and the School of Data are excited to announce the publication of a new research report into the state of data journalism in Tanzania. Data-driven journalism is an important and disruptive change in contemporary journalism practice. It is not a panacea solution to the fake news era, but it is a piece of the equation in achieving accurate, balanced, and critical reporting. The pathway to growing and optimising data journalism is imperfect, but over time, as media pushes its horizons, the field will grow cohesively. Especially in Tanzania, the efforts of trainers and advocates are integral to its lasting relevance and for pushing the limits of journalism in increasingly difficult circumstances. This report was prepared by Open Knowledge International and the School of Data for the World Bank in support of the Open Data and Accountability in Tanzania (SOGDAT) Programme funded by the UK Department for International Development. Key findings include the following:
  • Incentives to adopt data journalism matter, and opportunity costs need to be balanced carefully
  • It is key to manage expectations about the goals data journalism can achieve for media companies as well as society at large
  • Data trainings must be catered towards the work routines and needs of journalists, and should take into account how different media business models may support their uptake
  • Legal, political and social contexts influence journalism practice, the nature of reporting and the use of official figures to support media claims
The report uses semi-structured and unstructured in-depth interviews with media development experts and experienced trainers operating inside and outside Tanzania. It draws on interviews with reporters and editors from a cross-section of media houses: FM stations, print and online newspapers and TV stations produced in both Swahili and English languages. Our research was part of a wider programme of engagement with data users in Tanzania which saw the School of Data creating a local government data curriculum and providing training to stakeholders in the Tanzanian capital, Dodoma. Separately the Open Knowledge International product team built a data collection and data cleaning workflow aimed at improving the quality of geolocation data on schools in Tanzania. For further details and findings including recommendations for data trainers operating in Tanzania, download the full report.

Το OK Greece στην ημερίδα «Ανοικτοί εκπαιδευτικοί πόροι και Διά Βίου Μάθηση: Ευκαιρίες και προκλήσεις για την Ανώτατη Εκπαίδευση και τις δημόσιες βιβλιοθήκες»

- March 26, 2019 in Featured, Featured @en, News, ανοικτή εκπαίδευση, ανοικτοί εκπαιδευτικοί πόροι, διασυνδεδεμένα δεδομένα, Εκδηλώσεις, Νέα

Το «παρών» έδωσε το Ίδρυμα Ανοικτής Γνώσης Ελλάδος (OK Greece) στην ημερίδα «Ανοικτοί εκπαιδευτικοί πόροι και Διά Βίου Μάθηση: Ευκαιρίες και προκλήσεις για την Ανώτατη Εκπαίδευση και τις δημόσιες βιβλιοθήκες», η οποία διεξήχθη στις 15 Μαρτίου, στην Αθήνα. Το OK Greece εκπροσώπησαν ο πρόεδρός του, Δρ Χαράλαμπος Μπράτσας, και ο κος Σωτήρης Καραμπατάκης, Developer/Data Analyst. […]

EU copyright vote a ‘massive blow’ for internet users

- March 26, 2019 in copyright, eu, Featured, Internet, News, Policy

MEPs have today voted to press ahead with a controversial copyright crackdown in a ‘massive blow’ for all internet users. Despite a petition with over 5 million signatures and scores of protests across Europe attended by tens of thousands of people, MEPs voted by 348 to 274 in favour of the changes. It is expected to lead to the introduction of ‘filters’ on sites such as YouTube, which will automatically remove content that could be copyrighted. While entertainment footage is most likely to be affected, academics fear it could also restrict the sharing of knowledge, and critics argue it will have a negative impact on freedom of speech and expression online. EU member states will have two years to implement the law, and the regulations are still expected to affect the UK despite Brexit. Catherine Stihler, chief executive of the Open Knowledge Foundation, said:
“This vote is a massive blow for every internet user in Europe. MEPs have rejected pleas from millions of EU citizens to save the internet, and chose instead to restrict freedom of speech and expression online. We now risk the creation of a more closed society at the very time we should be using digital advances to build a more open world where knowledge creates power for the many, not the few.

But while this result is deeply disappointing, the forthcoming European elections provide an opportunity for candidates to stand on a platform to seek a fresh mandate to reject this censorship.”

Final copyright vote: MEPs must choose to save the internet

- March 26, 2019 in copyright, eu, Featured, Internet, News

MEPs will today vote on a controversial copyright crackdown that could restrict internet freedoms for millions of people. After years of negotiation, the final vote will be held on reforms that could result in automatic ‘upload filters’ which restrict what can be posted on social media platforms like YouTube. More than 5.1million people have signed a petition to ‘save the internet’, and scores of protests attended by tens of thousands of people were held across Europe at the weekend. While entertainment footage such as video game clips or copyrighted songs are most likely to be affected, academics fear it could also restrict the sharing of knowledge. The vote will be one of the last major decisions taken by MEPs before the European elections, and possibly the last by the UK’s MEPs ahead of Brexit. Over 120 MEPs have publicly pledged to vote against the crackdown, but that includes only three from the UK. Brexit does not offer an escape route from the changes, as any website that operates within the EU is likely to abide by the regulations. Catherine Stihler, chief executive of Open Knowledge International which campaigns for openness, said:
“If passed, this copyright crackdown will lead to a chilling effect on freedom of speech. It could change the web as we know it and restrict how we share research that could lead to medical breakthroughs or how we share facts to combat the spread of ‘fake news’. MEPs must choose to save the internet in this crucial vote. I particularly urge the UK’s MEPs to stand up and be counted while they still have a voice at the top table, as this will affect everyone in the UK even after Brexit. We must use digital advances for the public good and help build a more open world, not create a more closed society.”

Catherine Stihler was MEP for Scotland until January 2019. As an MEP, she was vice-chair of the European Parliament’s consumer protection committee and led the fight against the proposals. More background information on the proposal is available here: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-47239600

Kansalaiskide on Uutisraivaajan finaalissa

- March 23, 2019 in Featured, tietokide

OKFIn ja THL:n yhteishanke Kansalaiskide on päässyt HS-Säätiön Uutisraivaaja-kilpailun finaaliin. Kansalaiskide-projekti edistää harkittua ja jäsennettyä yhteiskunnallista keskustelua tuottamalla kansalaisjärjestöjen, journalistien ja muiden keskustelijoiden käyttöön kokeillun toimintamallin, tarvittavat nettityökalut, koulutusta ja käytännön esimerkkejä yhteistyössä Hiilineutraali Helsinki 2035 -toimenpideohjelman kanssa. Toimintamalli perustuu THL:ssä kehitettyjen ja vaikutusarvioinneissa käytettyjen tietokiteiden käyttöön. Ne ovat avoimia nettisivuja, joilla on täsmällinen kysymys ja joiden vastausta päivitetään jatkuvasti yhteiskehittämisen keinoin pohjautuen kritiikinkestäviin datoihin, jäsennettyihin keskusteluihin ja malleihin. Finalistivaiheen aikana konkreettisten aiheiden avulla kehitetään ketterästi ohjeistusta ja työkalujen vaatimusmäärittelyjä erityisesti kansalaisosallistumista varten (tähän asti tietokiteet ovat olleet asiantuntijoiden työkalu). Varsinaisessa projektissa ohjeistusta ja työkaluja käytetään laajamittaisesti kansalaisjärjestöjen ja mediatalojen kanssa yhteistyössä erilaisten ilmastonmuutokseen liittyvien ongelmien ymmärtämiseen ja viestimiseen. Lisätietoja täällä ja uutisraivaajan blogissa! The post Kansalaiskide on Uutisraivaajan finaalissa appeared first on Open Knowledge Finland.

Avoimuuden vaalipaneeli 2019

- March 15, 2019 in elections, Events, Featured, vaalit

Tule mukaan vaalipaneeliin kuulemaan puolueiden näkökulmia digimaailmaan ja avoimeen dataan. 1.4.2019 Helsingissä, Maria01:ssä. Miten rakentaa kilpailukykyistä, digitaalista Suomea, jossa on hyvä elää yhdessä älykkäiden robottien kanssa? Miten Suomi voisi ottaa osuutensa globaalista alusta- ja datataloudesta?  Miten saada mydata töihin reilulla tavalla, millainen on turvallinen kyberinfra? Miten saada suomalainen sote-aarrearkku hyötykäyttöön – vai onko henkilötietojen toissijainen käyttö ja yksityisyyden suoja ratkaisematon epäyhtälö? Miten taata avoin demokratia trollien ja jatkuvien aprillipäivien aikana? Tervetuloa maksuttomaan avoimuuden vaalipaneeliin, jossa tulevaisuuden tietoyhteiskunnasta keskustelevat Timo Harakka (SDP), Jyrki Kasvi (vihreät), Kristo Lehtonen (keskusta) ja Jouni Markkanen (kokoomus). Ilmoittaudu mukaan. Lisätietoja COSSin sivuilta. The post Avoimuuden vaalipaneeli 2019 appeared first on Open Knowledge Finland.

World Wide Web faces real dangers as it turns 30

- March 12, 2019 in Featured, Internet, Open Knowledge International

This article was originally published in The Scotsman. Sir Tim Berners-Lee’s invention of the world wide web has transformed modern life, but more work must be done to ensure it continues to be a force for good, writes Catherine Stihler. At the giant research laboratory in a suburb of Geneva, the innovative ideas produced by the scientists were stored on multiple, incompatible, computers. It was the year 1989, and one British worker at CERN decided to write a short document called “Information Management: A Proposal”. Tim Berners-Lee wrote: “Many of the discussions … end with the question – ‘Yes, but how will we ever keep track of such a large project?’ This proposal provides an answer to such questions.” In simpler terms, his theory addressed this idea: “Suppose all the information stored on computers everywhere were linked.” This vision of universal connectivity was produced 30 years ago today, and by 1991 it became the World Wide Web. Within just a few years, the web became something that wasn’t restricted to computer scientists alone, with the computers in libraries, universities and eventually people’s homes, fundamentally changing our lives. Over three decades, there has been a long list of extraordinary achievements, culminating in a world where we can now access the web from phones in our pockets, the TVs in our living rooms and the watches on our wrists. To mark the 30th anniversary, web founder Sir Tim Berners-Lee is taking a 30-hour trip, starting at CERN in Switzerland, travelling via London and finishing in Lagos. Throughout, he will be participating in a #web30 Twitter feed that will highlight significant moments in the web’s history. Former Vice-President Al Gore will recall the passing of the High Performance Computing Act in 1991, also called the Gore Bill, which promoted cooperation between government, academia, and industry. It helped fund work which led to the creation of the Mosaic web browser – a key moment as browsers are how we access the World Wide Web. In 1995, Microsoft launched Internet Explorer – a platform still familiar to millions of people around the world. There will also be a fun side to the celebrations, such as the moment the world was first introduced to ‘grumpy cat’. For me, as chief executive of Open Knowledge International, there are several key moments that I believe deserve to be remembered. Our role is to help governments, universities, and civil society organisations reach their full potential by providing them with skills and tools to publish, use, and understand data. We deliver technology solutions, enhance data literacy, provide cutting-edge research and mobilise communities to provide value for a wide range of international clients. In 2005 we created the Open Definition, the gold standard for open data which remains in place to this day. Two years later, our founder Rufus Pollock launched the Comprehensive Knowledge Archive Network, or CKAN as it is known. It’s a registry of open knowledge packages and projects — be that a set of Shakespeare’s works, the voting records of MPs, or 30 years of US patents. It is now used across the world, including the data.gov.uk site where you can find data published by central government, local authorities and public bodies in the UK to help designers build products and services. Another key moment which deserves to be celebrated came in July 2009 when a set of principles to promote open science were written down in a pub called the Panton Arms in Cambridge – the Panton Principles. Among those present was Rufus Pollock. When open data becomes useful, usable and used – when it is accessible and meaningful and can help someone solve a problem – that’s when it becomes open knowledge. It can make powerful institutions more accountable, while vital research can help us tackle challenges such as poverty, disease and climate change. All this would not have been possible without the invention of the World Wide Web. Today, however, we are at a crossroads. While the web has been a force for good, it has also allowed for the spread of fake facts and disinformation. Political earthquakes around the globe have led to the rise of populism, and people are uncomfortable about the amount of power held by some giant tech companies like Facebook and Google. The challenge for the next 30 years is to build a digital economy for the many, based on the principles of fairness and freedom. The web provides the opportunity to empower communities, and we must seize that opportunity and ensure that digital advances are used for the public good. So attempts to build a more closed society must be addressed. One example of that will come later this month when the European Parliament votes on a controversial copyright crackdown that threatens the future of the internet. If passed, it could lead to the automatic removal of legal online content which will have a chilling effect on freedom of expression. That’s why one of Open Knowledge International’s five demands for candidates standing in this year’s European elections is a public pledge to oppose the contentious ‘Article 13’ of these copyright reforms. We also want candidates to support improved transparency measures at social media companies like Facebook to prevent the spread of disinformation and fake news; champion ‘responsible data’ to ensure that data is used ethically and legally; back efforts to force governments and organisations to use established and recognised open licences when releasing data or content; and push for greater openness in their country, including committing to domestic transparency legislation. Sir Tim Berners-Lee’s invention has transformed our world, but the task is to ensure that it continues to transform our world for the better – and that falls to all of us. Let’s make the next 30 years of the digital era one of fairness, freedom and openness for all.