THE FATE OF NIGERIA IN THE WAKE OF BROADBAND ADVANCEMENT! TAKEAWAY FROM TPRC CONFERENCE

10 September 2017

Shavini, Mary-Cecile, Linda, Yang and Me

This week I had the privilege to attend the Annual Research Conference on Communications, Information and internet policy (TPRC45) at George Mason University, Washington DC from the 8th - 9th of September. I was sponsored by my department Georgetown Communications Culture and Technology (CCT) to be part of a team that would go represent it at the just concluded conference.

It was an insightful conference centered mostly on advancement in fields of technology, Internet and new media. What really caught my attention were the papers presented on broadband and internet neutrality. Those words where obscure and held faint meaning to this girl coming from the heart of Africa, it was surprising to see the advancement made in frameworks laid down for the adaptation for better internet speed and reach among communities in the USA. Stakeholders, academia, policy makers, practitioners came together to discuss issues from economic implications, privacy rights, broadband adaptable policies, internet and news content. 

As someone coming from Nigeria a part of the globe where policies, implementations and debate on issues like these aren't the front burner it gets disheartening. The intellectual class and elite has robbed a good number of the population great experiences like this despite traveling across board and getting an understanding of what is obtainable. In the age where 5G is already in existence, there are areas in Nigeria where 2G networks is yet to be obtainable and service providers are having a lee way providing crap network and internet service. Broadband service providers are charging so much for the limited access to internet and the regulatory body Nigerian Communications Commission, which is responsible for fostering advancements like these are yet to deal with issues of poor service provision and where the regulations exist the enforcement are only to the benefit of the political class. 

Lest we dwell on that, the conference made me realize that despite the fast paced the American tech sector seems to be going, there are loops and gaps especially the contradictory baits placed as services provided by broadband operators and companies like netflix and Over the top (OTT) service providers. 

 
In summary it was a great conference I met a fellow Nigerian a beneficiary of the past administrations effort to investing, in education. This scheme was stopped by the present administration a step in the wrong direction. 
Asides that I am still getting used to American style of cooking (may never get around it) but their breakfast and mode of presentation is always beautiful and mouth watering. I had great moments with my crew, and they made the experience less burdensome. 

What issues concerning communication and internet do you worry about and what would you like to be addressed?

Watch a mini video clip I did with Don Williams music, paying respect to the legend as he goes to be with the Lord. 

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