World Telecommunication and Information Society Day is being observed today. The coronavirus pandemic has indeed highlighted the critical role of information and communication technologies more than ever. As the daily normal lives of people are hit by lockdowns and families are forced to stay at home, digital technology has become the only way to stay in touch with friends and family. World Telecommunication Day is celebrated annually on 17th May since 1969. On this day the International Telecommunication Union or ITU was founded and the first International Telegraph Convention in 1865, was signed.
The theme of World Temecommunication Day 2021 is: Accelerating digital transformation in challenging times. From children’s school education to adults’ working from home and important activities like banking and even just staying in touch with family, the role played by telecommunication has become crucial. ”The COVID-19 has also brought to the fore the startling digital inequalities between and within countries,” according to the International Telecommunication Union.
On World Telecommunication Day let’s take a look at the ITU’s call to action so that the digital divide can be bidged. The ITU, calls on ”to accelerate the digital transformation in challenging times. Here are the areas of focus: ”Continue leveraging telecommunications/ICTs by developing digital policies and strategies to adapt and respond timely and effectively to different challenges that may occur” and ”report national progress with special focus on the targets that particularly contribute to digital transformation in the framework of the Connect 2030 Agenda, by providing data and statistics, as appropriate…”.