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World Telecommunication and Information Society Day 2020 Date and Theme: Know History and Significance of This Observance


World Telecommunication and Information Society Day (Photo Credits: File Image)

It is the World Telecommunication and Information Society Day 2020 today. Marked every year on May 17, this observance by the United Nations is to help raise awareness of the possibilities that the use of the Internet and other information and communication technologies (ICT). It also focuses on how telecommunication in societies and economies can bridge the digital divide. Every year there are seminars and conversations involving experts which suggest ways to develop communications and focus around the theme of the year. On this day, let us know little more about the history, significance and theme of the year 2020.

World Telecommunication and Information Society Day 2020 Theme

This year’s theme for this observance is “Connect 2030: ICTs for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)”. It will the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) members to reflect on the ICT advances for transition to smart and sustainable development. The five goals of the 2030 Agenda are Growth, Inclusiveness, Sustainability, Innovation and Partnership. The emerging trends for fostering these goals will be highlighted.

History and Significance

The day is observed on May 17 to commemorate the anniversary of the signing of the first International Telegraph Convention and the creation of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU). It has been celebrated since the year 1969, which was the foundation year of ITU. In the year 1865, the first International Telegraph Convention was signed.

In the year 2005, the World Summit on the Information Society called upon the UN General Assembly to declare 17 May as World Information Society Day. The main was to focus on the importance of the International Telegraph Convention and highlight the issue related to the information society. In the year 2006, the ITU Plenipotentiary Conference in Antalya, Turkey, decided to combine and celebrate both the events thus initiating May 17 as World Telecommunication and Information Society Day.

Talking about the recent situation of COVID-19 the UN Secretary-General António Guterres was quoted, “Information technology can be a beacon of hope, allowing billions of people around the world to connect. During the COVID-19 pandemic, these connections… are more important than ever.” This year a virtual conversation will be held since there is a lockdown across most nations. As we mentioned earlier, the focus will be on accelerating the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.​