Nov 18

Can Social Media Activism be Truly Grassroots?

In my last blog I wrote about how two young women had used the internet to campaign (successfully as it turns out) to get the New Zealand singer, Lorde, to cancel her concert in Tel Aviv because of Israel’s violence against Palestinian people and their occupation of Palestine. There are numerous examples of Social Media being used for progressive causes (#MeToo, BlackLivesMatter, Occupy, Resist to name a few), but can the social media really be used for grassroots organizing? Continue reading →

Oct 18

Crossing Borders

The other day I heard about an event I want to share with you: the Journalism Across Border conference. It took place from 26 Sept – 28 Sept at University of Technology Ilmenau in Germany. Let’s get right to it.

Source: https://www.tu-ilmenau.de/mw/conference/call-for-papers/

Continue reading →

Sep 18

Digital Inequality grows in Africa, but authorities are worried about access!

If most Africans are unconnected to the Internet, why the sudden urge to restrict access by African Leaders? Perhaps the online organisers are doing something right!

Zimbabwe Social Media Protest

Source: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-36776401

Internet access in Africa is growing, but still lags far behind the rest of the world. According to Internet World Stats 35.4% of people access the internet on the continent compared to 54.4% globally. However, even these figures hide unequal distribution; they include the South Africa with a rate of 53.7% and Morocco with 62.4% which contrast with Eritrea, DRC and Niger with rates of less than 5%. Continue reading →

Sep 18

Welcome to the Group 6 Blog

A general theme was agreed to examine how inequalities in access to ICT4D infrastructure and knowledge influences activism in the digital age. Much has been written about how the ‘digital divide’ between and within rich and poor countries impacts on an individual’s ability to engage effectively and competitively in political and economic life. But how does it effect social movements and activism? Does the digital divide work for or against grassroots organisations trying to make an impact on the political landscape? Does it advantage some grassroots organisations whilst disadvantaging others?

A provisional/working title for the blog is “Bridging the Digital Divide”. Perhaps with a subtitle of ‘Activism in an age of Digital Inequality’ . A title page could include something like a bridge image with a connected 1st world city and disconnected 3rd world city either side.

Blog postings will aim to explore this conceptual framework of activism and the digital divide within the context of specific themes for which each blogger will be effectively a ‘correspondent’. The purpose of this is to provide as much free artistic/investigative license to the blogger as possible but within a common framework so as to harness the individual expertise and experience of group members.