It’s already mid-February and one of the next events in Barcelona is the Mobile World Congress. From Monday 27th February to Thursday 2nd March this world-reference congress expects tens of thousands of visitors from around the world. According to figures provided by the organisers, last year’s edition had more than 100,000 attendees from over 200 countries and 40 new electronic devices were presented.
However, and despite the impressive figures and the big technological innovations presented at the congress, year after year we see that the Mobile World Congress does not provide any information on the issue of conflict minerals that are contained in mobile devices, or the terrible working conditions of the workers of companies producing these devices.
Because of this quite unethical approach, last year several organisations started to organise events running in parallel to the Mobile World Congress. Now, in 2017 there will be: the Mobile Social Congress 2017, the 2nd Congress on Technological Sovereignty and the Anti-MWC Event.
Mobile Social Congress 2017
Organised by Setem Catalunya, the Mobile Social Congress 2017 will take place on 28th February and 1st March in the Pati Manning in Barcelona. During the Mobile Social Congress, there will be panels to discuss blood minerals, the violation of human rights and labour rights in factories producing electronic devices, the alternatives to the oligopoly over telephony and the Internet, and technological autonomy.
During these two days there will also be workshops on reusing and recycling electronic devices with Circuit Pangea and eReuse.org, disassembly and recognising the parts of a Fairphone mobile phone, work sessions on business with open licenses and collaborative production of mobile applications and workshops on how to use GNU/Linux.
After these workshops and sessions there will also be workshops to learn how to mend your electronic devices and sessions with DJs.
2nd Congress on Technological Sovereignty
The programme includes conferences and discussions on: women and technology, big companies dealing with people, technological sovereignty, gender-based violence and new tecnologies, quantum computation, the Xarxa d'Innovació Pública (Public Innovation Network) and the open, free and neutral network Guifi.net. Workshops on Open Source Intelligence i Nabú Project and demonstrations on decidim.barcelona will also take place.
Organised by libertarian movements, these events will take place in different venues such as La Cinètika or Can Batlló. They will take place on Saturday 18th, Friday 24th and Saturday 25th February. There will be conferences on labour rights, the technologisation of borders, what really is behind the Mobile World Congress, new technologies linked to repression, electromagnetic contamination and social networks. There will also be networks on digital self-defence and open sources of information.