The public sphere in Africa and other parts of the developing world is changing rapidly, thanks to “digital leapfrogging”, whereby areas which have had no or limited analogue communication systems are being catapulted into the digital age. No longer subject to the linear progression of technology, these areas have embraced digital, especially mobile telephone, methods. People who have never had access to basic communication equipment are making their first telephone calls and text messaging on hand-held devices similar to, or even more advanced than , those available to subscribers in the developed world.
With little infrastructure to build on, entirely new digital communication systems and associated social media networks are springing up. At the heart of this revolution are dynamic innovators, not least Frontline SMS and Kiwanja.net. CB3 was fortunate to catch up with Ken Banks, one of these pioneers, to find out exactly how this revolution is developing and how technology is changing the communication landscape in the developing world.