The Campware Initiative: Free Software for Free Media in the Developing World
Douglas Arellanes, Head of Research and Development, Media Development Loan Fund/Center for Advanced Media Prague

Track: Open Society
Date: Tuesday, 19 September 2006
Time: 11:10 - 11:50
Location: Salon Versailles

In emerging democracies, independent news media play a vital role in ensuring transparency, sharing information across communities and covering stories the official media may not want exposed.

By providing technological solutions to independent media organizations based on free and open source software, the Media Development Loan Fund's Center for Advanced Media - Prague helps to build opportunities and capacity for these organizations, enabling them to serve their local communities as well as reach new audiences -- frequently in diaspora -- worldwide.

This talk will provide an overview of CAMP's activities, as well as discussing how the CAMP model can be applied to other narrowly defined constituencies, both in emerging and established democracies.

CAMP's Campware Initiative creates software tools and then works with independent media organizations to implement, train, and use them.

Its current projects include content management, hosting and consultancy for media in the former Yugoslavia; creating radio networks in West Africa, Peru, and Jordan; training and advocacy of open source software in Kazakhstan.

Campware's development model is somewhat different than the open source community at large -- focusing on the needs of a small subset of potential users.

Campware's products include the Campsite content management system for newsrooms; the LiveSupport radio playout and automation system; Cream, a CRM for media organizations; and Dream, a print circulation and distribution database. All Campware products are released under the GPL.