S ituation of citizen media in Azerbaijan Presenter: Emin Huseynzade, New Media Specialist
What is the general situation of the internet in your country What percentage of the population use it What social groups (e.g. students) have the best access to it Which social groups are left out How strong is the urban/rural division More than 1.2 mln internet users in Azerbaijan Speed is low, prices are high 7 times lower, than it was 3.5 years ago. A lot of providers, low quality. iBurst technology – Elcell (prices is very high) Best access: students, youth, clerks, state organizations Worst: regions, middle and old generation, all smaller cities. Interesting situation: it is the cheapest prices in Uninet ?
Are there any mobile phone-based services other than just telephony If so, which ones are the most popular Are mobile phones used for citizen media creation ? There are 3 GSM (Azercell, Bakcell, NarMobile) operators and 1 CDMA – Catel Different services (Zengimcell, MMS) 4mln 440 tsnd. mobile users - 51% of population WAP is very popular (wap.xana.az) Mobile internet is also expensive Interesting situation: WiFi in Baku
What are the most significant new media projects in the country How popular are they Do they reach outside the core high tech users Are there companies based on new media/citizen journalism products ? The most interesting for Azerbaijanis’ are blogs, more than web sites Mix.az, Load.az, People.az, Baku.ws – all are blogs, mostly entertainment Azeriblog.com and story about blog.az According to Alexa: in Azerbaijan - 6 in Russian Day.az 27 in Azeri Mix.az Sirr.az Myxazar.com – networks Working with youth, mostly There is no new media company, but some has inside Interesting: The most popular blog Mix.az
Who are the new media authors Do any of the local opinion leaders/intellectuals blog ? Mostly youth, lack of money a lot of ideas. There are a lot of blogs. Example: Ilgar Mamadovs blog
Are podcasts or other forms of multimedia popular ? There is no voice podcast in Azerbaijan yet, but some online TV (AN TV, Channel 13, just started in 2008) Internet speed creates problems for them. There is some online radios – day.az 1news, etc. How there been cases of spectacular use of the new media in your country ? A lot of people uses internet forums, but most active is internet groups in yahoo, google,etc. Networks will involve these people. Most active group is Azeristudents:
What are the new media mostly used for Have they been used for social activism ? ADR forum, FASE, Barcamp, Blogging training, news, actions, flash mobs. Mostly is speaking about current situation in country. There were people trying to make groups speaking about Iran, Islam, love, state policy- unsuccessfully. People talk about everything Do social networks exist Are they popular Have they been used for social activism ? There is myxazar.com, dream.az and latest sirr.az They just started and becoming popular. Needs money for PR. Sirr.az:
Little money, big job. Groups, Blogs, Photo/video sharing, Internal mail system, Friends, etc. EventsStill in beta till middle of November. Working on new structure on test.sirr.az Example: Sirr.az Profile page
What new media infrastructure (e.g. blogging platforms, training center, aggregation projects) there exists in your country How much dependence there is on the global toolkit (gmail, yahoo, etc) or the Russian one ( mail.ru , yandex.ru ) or the Turkish in the case of Azerbaijan Are there strong local competitors ? Transition Online – Caucasus project. Some part of blogs is in English, Russian and a little in Turkish blogging systems. People prefer Azerbaijani language or supporting Azerbaijani language systems. Azeriblog.com case. Need to develop more!!! Is there internet censorship in your country How is it implemented What is the impact it is making on the new media Have there been threats or direct attacks against bloggers/new media people ? Eynulla Fatullayev, editor-in-chief Gundelik Azerbaijan were jailed because of the words in Internet forum fikrini.de closed, tinsohbeti.com non-accessible Censorship based on speed, only one entry in whole country, fiber-optic cable is not using.
How do the traditional and the new media interact ? Mediaforum.az case. Having old type of web page. A few forums. A lack of knowledge Networks and blogs is the biggest potential. Digg, Tecnorati type site. Creating special blogs, podcasts and vblogs could be the main Bridge. Mailing lists, photo blogs. Where do you see the biggest potential for the new media in your country or in the region ?
Contacts: <ul><li>Emin Huseynzade , new media expert </li></ul><ul><li>Transition Online, Caucasus Project Manager </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] or </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>Phone: +994 70 31790 70 . </li></ul><ul><li>Baku, Azerbaijan </li></ul>