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DATELINE: Lagos. Stakeholders in the Nigerian Internet ecosystem will gather in Lagos for two days, April 25th
and 26th, at the Recital Hall, Muson Centre, Onikan, to harness ways and means of boosting the ratio of Nigeria’s local Internet content. The LIC Forum will focus strongly on how to meet the content hosting prescription of the Internet Society (ISOC) for Africa, which at the current ratio in Africa is 20:80 where 80 per cent of African content is hosted abroad, and 20 per cent is hosted locally.
The two-day Forum with the theme: ”Sustaining Local Internet Content, the way forward for Nigeria”, is expected to facilitate increased Nigerian content on the Internet, the hosting of such content, locally, and an increased adoption of .ng as the domain name of choice, particularly among Nigerians.
The maiden LIC Forum 2013, a collaboration of Internet exchange Point of Nigeria (IXPN) and the Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NIRA) is aimed at addressing the dearth of internet content hosted and produced locally in Nigeria. With the Forum devoted to harnessing contents that are produced locally, and turning them into valuable commodities, the expectation is that the Forum would encourage a new hosting ratio of 80:20 in favour of Nigeria in particular and Africa in general.
The Managing Director IXPN, Muhammed Rudman and Chief Operating Officer NiRA, Opeoluwa Odusan in a joint statement said that the “LIC Forum would be used to sensitize all stakeholders, key players in the sector and the public on the significance of local content, the internet, our nation’s identity on cyberspace, as well as the emerging relevance of local hosting of content for capacity building, and job creation, among others.” They also stressed that this collaboration should stem the capital flight emanating from hosting content outside the shores of the country and the preference for domain names other than .ng domains due to some erroneous dispositions.
While assuring that the forum would address the dearth of Internet content produced and hosted locally in Nigeria, the group re-assured that the some of the misconception about the .ng country code Top Level Domain will be squarely tackled. The .ng is Nigeria’s unique identity on the Domain Name space, curiously however, the predominance of the adoption of .com and .co.uk still holds sway due highly to some misconceptions about the .ng country code Top Level Domain.
According to the statement, the Internet exchange Point of Nigeria (IXPN) embodies the physical Network infrastructure that allows Internet Service Providers (ISPs), Telcos, Educational Institutions and other IP centric organizations to exchange data traffic between their respective networks. The Forum organizers further stated that the key role of the IXPN is to allow networks to interconnect through the exchange, providing the necessary environment to keep local Internet traffic local, stable and reliable. The organizers asserted that the benefits to all the networks, operators and end-users are a reduction in costs, latency, and increased speed among others.
Therefore, the purpose of the two-day Forum is to sensitize all stakeholders, key players in the sector and the general public on the significance of local Internet content, our nation’s identity on cyberspace, as well as the emerging relevance of local hosting of content which has a multiplier effect on the economy through capacity building, and job creation, just to mention a few.
The agenda for the two-day event shall include the following: Infrastructure for Content Hosting, Cost of Local Fibre Infrastructure, Broadband Penetration, Content Provision and its Challenges, registrars challenges in hosting content locally, monetization of content et cetera.
The Forum will also afford a good opportunity for exhibitors especially ISPS and Telcos who may wish to leverage the event to showcase their services (Data Centres, Hosting Platforms, etcetera) relevant to the creation of local content and the hosting of local content locally.
Amongst other benefits, the Forum will also serve as a platform for networking as there would be discussion sessions to enable stakeholders share their individual and collective thoughts and experiences on producing and hosting local Internet content.
Participants at the Forum will include Government MDAs, ISPs, Telcos, Registrars of NIRA, Financial Institutions, Institutions of Learning, Bloggers, Various Professional and Trade Organizations, NGOs, Faith Based Organizations, the Print and Electronic Media, diverse categories of Content Producers, Authors/Writers and Publishers, and the interested public.