Like the Brazilian government, the World Social Forum wants distance from Microsoft. According to Luciano Brunet, of the Coordination of Information Technology of the Social Forum, all the technology installed in the area of the Forum will use open-code computer programs, the so-called free software.
Brunet added that the infrastructure for 2005 will have a press access center with approximately 180 computers, all using Linux and other free software. Besides this, 30 “cyber cafes” will be available.
“The Forum will provide over one thousand points of internet access,” Brunet affirms.
“Communications: Counter-hegemonic Practices, Rights, and Alternatives” will be one of the 11 central topics under discussion at the 5th WSF, which will be held from January 26 to 31 in Porto Alegre, in southern Brazil.
In previous forums, the subject of communications was diluted with other topics. This time it will be highlighted, as may be noted by the number of activities already scheduled: nearly 150.
According to Joaquim Ernesto Palhares, collaborator of the Brazilian Media Observatory and vice-president of Global Media Watch, an international press observatory, the debate over communications is indispensable, to expose the concentration in the Brazilian media and the monopoly of information, among other themes.
Besides the Brazilian organizations, which are responsible for two-thirds of the proposed activities in the communications field, international groups such as CRIS (Communications Rights in the Information Society), AMARC (World Association of Community Radio Broadcasters), ALER (Latin American Radio Education Association), ALAI (Latin American Information Agency), and Global Media Watch will be present at the debates.
Over five thousand journalists, representing 69 countries from five continents, have already been granted credentials to cover the World Social Forum.
Translation: David Silberstein