Net Prophet

Welcome to Net Prophet, a blog tracking new media and tech developments across Central Europe and Eurasia

Tajikistan’s recent YouTube block highlights a fickle friendship with the Web

May 29, 2013
To friend or to unfriend?  Tajikistan cannot make up its mind about the Internet.   Read More »

Elva, crowd-sourcing conflict in the South Caucasus

Elva is a platform developed in Georgia that allows to easily receive feedback from local communities via SMS. Successfully used to map local needs along the ABL with South Ossetia, it could soon be used elsewhere Read More »

Karimova gets schooled in Twitter debate

May 17, 2013
How does she manage it all? Even though her schedule must be packed, Gulnara Karimova, an ambassador to the UN and daughter of Uzbekistan's President Islam Karimov, still seems to find time to lecture human rights activists, though not too successfully. Read More »

Hungary: Government limits FOIA transparency law

In an unexpected move last week, Parliamentarians in Hungary took action to change the country's Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) in an effort to limit the scope of data accessible to the public under the law. Read More »

U.S. calls Ukraine the pirate king

May 8, 2013
U.S. officials are calling Ukraine the world’s “worst abuser of intellectual property rights,” charging that Internet piracy there has gotten so bad that even government agencies are using illegal software, according to AFP. In response, U.S. trade officials said they are considering trade restrictions against Kyiv. Read More »

Azerbaijan legislating civil web discourse

May 3, 2013
Just as Azerbaijan is being criticized in the Freedom House report, the country’s legislature is considering a measure that would punish untoward statements on the Internet, reports. Read More »

New app warns Romanian drivers of upcoming potholes

Apr 30, 2013
Although a solution to Romania's endemic road problems is still nowhere in sight, a team of Romanian IT specialists has come up with an app for mobile phones that allows drivers to avoid potholes. Read More »

Dimon Don’t Cry

The Russian Prime Minister, Dmitry Medvedev, doesn't like his online nickname “Dimon,” but whatever we think of Dimon’s playground problems how does one stand up to online bullies? And why are so many of them Russian? Read More »

Georgian authorities reassure Christians about use of digital IDs

Apr 26, 2013
Rumors that electronic ID cards carry hidden satanic symbols have swirled in Georgia since the cards were introduced in 2011. Efforts by the Georgian Orthodox Church to quash the story, even a ruling approving the cards by the church’s Holy Synod, seem not to be working, so the government has stepped in, writes. Read More »

Estonia’s Winny Puhh makes 1 million new Internet friends

The members of Estonian rock band Winny Puhh bear (ahem) little resemblance to the red-shirted, honey-loving cartoon character, but they’ve managed to win over Internet audiences with a 2013 Eurovision-qualifying performance regardless. Read More »

Kazakhstan climbs up the post-Soviet IT heap

Apr 24, 2013
In the annual Global Information Technology Report of the World Economic Forum, Kazakhstan has outshone its Central Asian neighbors – and Russia – to rank 43 of 144 countries, reports. Kyrgyzstan, on the other hand, ranks at the bottom of all post-Soviet nations, at 118.     Read More »

Latvia whizzes in as Wi-Fi wonderland

Apr 23, 2013
Estonians often boast that free wireless Internet access is available throughout their country — even in remote forests and along deserted beaches. And now neighboring Latvia will be able to tout the same thing. Read More »

Skolkovo police raid fuels Putin-Medvedev split speculation

Apr 22, 2013
On 18 April, Russian authorities searched the Moscow offices of the Skolkovo Foundation, a high-tech incubator, in a move certain to fuel speculation of a widening rift between Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, Reuters reports. Read More »
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