Research

Our research breaks-down the legal-institutional frameworks on technology-mediated violence against women in India, and analysis its key gaps. Details and links for all reports and presentations developed under this project can be found below:

Examining technology-mediated violence against women in India. Towards appropriate  legal-institutional responses in India

January, 2018: This discussion paper argues that the omnipresence of the digital demands a re-evaluation of legal-institutional response to violence against women. The networked logic of the Internet, and social media platforms that overrun it bank upon virality, effectively rendering ineffectual notions of 'consent'. The paper attempts to posit a feminist response to the disruptions of the digital that builds upon jurisprudence of dignity, equality and privacy drawn from global and national legal frameworks. Finally, it recommends that rather than piece-meal alterations to the existing law, the paradigmatic shifts ushered in by the digital, justify investing in a new law for technology-mediated violence against women. Download full paper
 

Technology-mediated violence against women in India. How can we strengthen existing legal-institutional response mechanisms?

January, 2017: Our discussion paper on the issue of technology-mediated violence against women analyses the adequacy of the current legal and institutional frameworks in India and proposes alternate models that need to be debated and analysed. The paper raises a series of questions on overhauling the existing legal framework, effectively addressing intermediary liability and strengthening law enforcement and other institutional mechanisms. Download full paper
This paper was revised further in January 2018, please find the updated resource above. 

Report of the pre-consultation on technology-mediated violence against women

January, 2017: Our discussion paper led to the pre-consultation meeting organised in Bangalore in January 2017. A group of feminist scholars and practitioners came together at this meeting to review the discussion paper, debate the questions raised by it, and brainstorm on strategic directions to take this issue forward. Download full report

 

Writing wrongs or righting violations? – Unpacking the Supreme Court’s emerging stance on online censorship

March, 2017: This position paper looks at the issue of intermediary filtering in the context of two Supreme Court cases. The first was a petition filed by activist Sabu Matthew George in 2008, asking for a ban on advertisements on search engines related to pre-natal sex determination. The second case was a suo-moto PIL taken up by the Court in 2015, in response to women’s’ rights activist Sunitha Krishnan’s letter on the circulation ofn rape videos on social media sites. Our paper analyses these cases, alongside the arguments related to freedom of speech and the act of intermediary filtering of content, and argues for a more nuanced intermediary liability framework which acknowledges that all content cannot be treated equally. Download full paper

 

Submission on Online Violence Against Women to the Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women

Nov 2017:  IT for Change contributed to the 'call for submission on online violence against women' by the Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women, Ms. Dubravka Šimonović. The paper provides a state of play of the legislative, judicial and executive response to violence against women in India and highlights emerging good practices. Download full paper

Presentation at Majlis Legal Centre’s annual conference, ‘Negotiating Spaces’

March 2017: IT for Change also had the opportunity to present its research under the project at Majlis Legal Centre’s annual conference ‘Negotiating Spaces’. The conference focussed on analysing various facets, impacts and internal contradictions of online spaces, through a gender lens. 

 

The first presentation, ‘What's happening today to women's rights and citizenship?’ by Anita Gurumurthy, focussed on the network-data complex and its implications for women’s citizenship. See full presentation

In the second presentation, ‘Reading the content regulation debate in India: Questions on technology-mediated violence and the remit of the law’, Nandini Chami, raised key questions about the role of technological solutions in building a gender-inclusive online public sphere. See full presentation