Winners in digital solution competition make anti-disinformation app
The grand finale of the Digital Khichuri Challenge 2019 (DKC), a competition for Bangladeshi young change-makers for formulating solutions to make the digital space safer and more tolerant, took place on December 11 at the BCC Auditorium, ICT Division.
Partnering with Facebook and the ICT Division, United Nations Development Program (UNDP) initiated its youth-centric platform Digital Khichuri Challenge in 2016 in order to uphold cultural diversity, pluralism and tolerance. The overarching objective of this initiative has been to facilitate the youth to develop positive alternatives to exclusionary appeals that underpin violence, said UNDP.
After the successful completion of the fifth cohort, DKC returned with 10 teams; five student-led teams and five startups, of social entrepreneurs, programmers, grassroots leaders, designers, storytellers, students, and others to compete in a fast-paced hackathon at BRAC CDM Savar from December 8-10 to formulate new digital platforms and solutions that can provide digital literacy to migrant workers.
Migrant workers often find themselves in places distant from their community, leading a life of isolation and social exclusion. They only find solace and some companionship using social media heavily to spend their time and keep in touch with their family, increasing their social media usage compared to when they were in Bangladesh. However, they lack awareness of the risks posed by social media, making them vulnerable to cybercrime, cyberbullying, disinformation and propaganda. The selected teams and startups at DKC formulated solutions to provide digital literacy to the migrant workers and protect them against the perils of the cyberspace.
They presented their solutions at the closing ceremony in the presence of the jury, fellow participants, UNDP representatives and other esteemed guests. Team Edsight and Choukosh were awarded as the winner and runner-up respectively in the student category. Team We Workers and Probash Kotha were awarded as the winner and runner-up respectively in the startup category.
Ed-Sight is an app-driven solution that will give language lessons to the migrants and help them analyze fake news through a trial and error approach. Choukosh is a live quiz app based on cybersecurity and digital literacy. The users will get a point for each round they cross, which can be redeemed to purchase gifts from their integrated online shop. They hope this app-driven solution will engage the migrant workers.
Team We Workers developed a one-stop solution to protect the female migrant workers against violence through an audio or video recording based reporting system. Mediators called ‘community angels’ will then support to resolve the solution. Probash Kotha wants to disseminate online content on digital literacy through digital dramas, digital posters, celebrity endorsements, live streaming, focus discussion and creating community leaders.
Tina F Jabeen, Investment Advisor, Startup Bangladesh, ICT Division; Faruk Ahmed Jewel, Head of Innovation Lab, A2i; Arafat Ara of Financial Express and Syed Saiful Haque, Chairman, WARBE Development Foundation were part of the jury board.