Posted by: ateedub | July 20, 2008

Web Usage in Africa

Sorry for the delay on this. I meant to have it done on Tuesday. But here goes:

After a discussion yesterday (ie, Monday) about Internet usage in Africa, I wanted to provide a written overview and some further resources about the topic. Some colleagues and I were discussing international use of social media and we looked at several blogs written in Africa. One of the major questions that came up was why do so many bloggers write in English even if that’s not the primary language of the country?

There are a lot of reasons for this that in my mind include:

  • Infrastructure and access to the web
  • Levels of education
  • Intended audiences
  • Major languages on the web

I’ve compiled a list of resources for anyone interested in learning more about this. Rather than describe each link, I’ve placed them into categories so you’ll know what you’ll find there. While some of these links are older, they still provide interesting information about the growth and evolution of Internet use in Africa.

A couple of highlights:

Who’s Online?
http://www.internetworldstats.com/africa.htm
http://www.internetworldstats.com/stats1.htm
http://www.africaaction.org/bp/inetall.html (from 1997)
http://www.acacia.org.za/africa_internet_map.htm
http://www.uneca.org/aisi/nici/country_profiles/South%20Africa/southinter.htm
http://whiteafrican.com/2008/04/16/measuring-africas-internet-connectivity/
http://www.balancingact-africa.com/profile1.html
http://www.balancingact-africa.com/news/back/balancing-act_412.html

What are They Doing?
http://www.africa.upenn.edu/afrfocus/afrfocus021704.html
http://www.africaaction.org/docs01/inet0102.htm
http://gigaom.com/2007/05/27/in-africa-money-not-necessary-for-mobile-banking/
http://whiteafrican.com/2007/12/31/why-the-internet-matters-in-africa/
http://www.africaaction.org/docs01/inet0102.htm

Technology in Africa
http://www-sul.stanford.edu/depts/ssrg/africa/elecnet.html
http://www.fao.org/News/2001/011205-e.htm
http://www.satsig.net/ivsat-africa.htm
http://www.balancingact-africa.com/
http://www.columbia.edu/cu/lweb/indiv/africa/cuvl/Internet.html
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/4787422.stm
http://www.suvabay.com/
http://allafrica.com/stories/200807070598.html
http://www.idrc.ca/en/ev-34486-201-1-DO_TOPIC.html
http://www.africaaction.org/docs00/inet0010.htm (from 2000)

Africa on the Web (lists of resources)
http://www.columbia.edu/cu/lweb/indiv/africa/cuvl/

http://www.nai.uu.se/library/resources/guidetoafrica/
http://www.ipl.org/div/subject/browse/rci05.00.00/
http://home.utah.edu/~jwr9311/MENA.html (from 1998 )
http://www.anc.org.za/sanet.html

Popular African Portals
http://www.iafrica.com/
http://allafrica.com/
http://www.woyaa.com/

Discussion about Internet in Africa
http://www.economist.com/world/africa/displaystory.cfm?story_id=9990626
http://www.idrc.ca/en/ev-9437-201-1-DO_TOPIC.html

http://www.mg.co.za/article/2007-12-31-the-father-of-internet-in-africa
http://www.firstmonday.dk/issues/issue3_4/ott/index.html
http://www.unesco.org/webworld/points_of_views/180302_cornu.shtml

Advertisements

Responses

  1. Good reference post. You asked:

    “One of the major questions that came up was why do so many bloggers write in English even if that’s not the primary language of the country?”

    Two quick points:

    1) Besides being a premium language on the web, it’s also the one that you search in and can find results for. Arguably, there’s as much (more?) going on in Francophone and Arabic-speaking Africa on the web as there is on the Anglophone side – we English speakers have a hard time find it.

    2) The people in-country speaking about technology issues are generally not just talking to their counterparts in-country. So, you won’t find that many Kenyans writing about technology in Swahili; a) because English is the language of business, and b) because they realize that they’re not just writing to Kenyans, but to a global audience.

  2. […] can read the rest of this blog post by going to the original source, here […]

  3. http://thekampalan.blogspot.com/

    Another great one.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Categories

%d bloggers like this: