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When Startups And Revolutions Collide | TechCrunch

When Startups And Revolutions Collide | TechCrunch | Internet Presence | Scoop.it

In the last two months, tiny Silicon Valley startups have proven their ability to upset the well-laid plans of autocrats half a world away. Just this week, Turkey’s Prime Minister, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, failed spectacularly at banning Twitter, as local citizens found easy workarounds with tech tools, skirting blocks with tens of thousands of tweets mocking the impotent censors.

“I think that startups can perform functions once reserved to government, but they are well-served to be as educated as possible before they wade into foreign affairs,” Secretary Hilary Clinton’s former senior adviser, Alec Ross, writes to me.

The State Department is no longer the only bridge between a pajama-clad hacker and dissidents in the Middle East. Anyone with an Internet connection can wade into the dicey diplomatic waters of revolution, once reserved for governments. This new unregulated power has its promises and perils.

Turkey’s Backfire

In Turkey, anti-censorship tech has thus far provided a safe and almost embarrassingly easy workaround for clumsy government censors. Erdoğan brazenly threatened to “wipe out” Twitter after courts approved a ban on the micro-blogging service for hosting anti-government content.

Almost immediately after the ban was instituted, information for workarounds spread virally.

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Marc Kneepkens's insight:

This issue is very significant. Democracy and communication are very closely linked. Governments used to control the communication channels, but with the rise of the internet that is not the case anymore. Not only startups are making a difference. Big technology companies are gaining tremendous power. And so does every individual.

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Unlocking India’s innovation potential - The Times of India

Unlocking India’s innovation potential - The Times of India | Internet Presence | Scoop.it
Today we are at the edge of innovation in several fields including big data, clean energy, mobile and social computing.

Today we are at the edge of innovation in several fields including big data, clean energy, mobile and social computing. Yet, translating this into big rewards on the global stage continues to be a challenge for India. What are the opportunities and how do we leverage them as a nation?

The second most populous nation, the third highest GDP globally, a demographic dividend that has created vast base of young and educated workforce... yet, while much has been discussed on India's contribution to the world on the strength of our vast intellectual resources, unfortunately when it comes to innovation, we have a long way to go.

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Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Amazing to see these numbers. India's population between 15-29 is larger than the total population of the USA.

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