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Web 2.0 : A reality in Women Empowerment

Picture taken in Chiapas, Mexico. December 2009.

The first time I used Internet, I remember I was around 8 years old. The image comes to me as clear as water. It was a normal Friday; I was playing with my best friend at her house and as she had a new computer, so with this excuse she showed me how did chat rooms worked and how we needed an email account in order to use a chat messenger. This was the first time I saw a live conversation with someone from a country that was literally “in the other side of the world”.

I know I was lucky enough to grow up in a generation where Internet and Web tools have been a part of our society. And right now, when web 2.0 breaks our physical barriers more than ever, the opportunities we have to get our voices heard and be a part of a team where interacting with people from different regions is very achievable. The possibilities are just infinite.

Years later, when I entered university I decided I wanted to be a journalist in order to represent the voice of people who might not have enough tools to express it to the world. And thankfully, this is the degree I am currently studying in order to get a “journalist” title – and a career. After attending classes and reading different publications, I got to understand that the Internet plays a key role in this field. And it was then when I discovered citizen journalism.

I believe that women empowerment can be achieved through Web 2.0 when female citizens know how to use a computer and have a will to tell their own stories. They become local journalists. This gives a very interesting and unique perspective for the issues they are trying to communicate, as they are the ones who transmit and write the stories directly to the public, without any intermediary. They write what they feel and see in their surroundings and this gives us a perspective about their own vision of the world.

When women are responsible for their own representation, and with they become able to create their own path, then change appears. And development becomes a reality.

For me, web 2.0 is a very powerful tool as I have been involved in different online publications for a few years now (some of the publications I have worked for, are mentioned at the end of this text). This lets me explore and understand my community, reach women that would like to get their voices represented and become a part of the mutual understanding that has to be achieved in order to promote peace and equality in my country, and in the world.

Global Voices: http://globalvoicesonline.org/author/andrea-arzaba/

TH!NK 3. Developing World Platform: http://development.thinkaboutit.eu/think3/blogger/arzaba

Comments

alia's picture

you were so lucky because you

you were so lucky because you used internet in that age , i used internet when i was around 20 years old ,so i think you have alot of experience you can share it with me ;)

a very good stroy , i hope we can get the peace that you mentioned it above :)

best regards ,
Alia

Andrea Arzaba's picture

Thank you!

Alia! I think we can both learn from our different experiences! And well remember you are lucky as well, because many women do not have the opportunity still to use Internet!

alia's picture

iam sure iam a lucky woman

iam sure iam a lucky woman because iam between great ladies such like you :)

Andrea Arzaba's picture

Alia!!!!

:) Me too! Thank you so much for your posts! What do u do back home?

Dear Andrea,

I love the spirit and curiosity of the 8 year old child and the discovery of the world via the internet. What an important turning point in your life and how you have transformed the lives of women in your country and beyond through the power of technology and journalism.

I appreciate how you value the "authentic" voice of women sharing their stories as they experienced it and in the first person voice. You provide HOPE and the possibility of transforming dreams into reality -- if you say it, believe it and share it with the world, anything is possible! The innocence and wisdom of a child is powerful when we give her or him the tools and knowledge available to explore and create positive change in the world.

Thank you for sharing the power of a child, and the wisdom of a woman who believes in the possibility of the human spirit. Please keep up the wonderful work and I look forward to reading more of your stories!

With Gratitude,

Linda Ando

With Gratitude,

Linda M. Ando

Iffat Gill's picture

Thanks for sharing this!

I am very much interested in the online behavior of young people online and hope to work more on this topic some time soon, What interests me from your story is the age at which you were introduced to the internet. If I am not mistaken I learned how to use internet at the age of 14 but my little cousin aged 6 (and so many more children of her age) is so much interested in these new technologies too. I am positive that this new generation of 'digital natives' will have a heck of a lot more experiences to share and it will be a totally new chapter in the age of communication and connection!
I enjoyed reading your post.

Best
Rose.

Iffat Gill

Sarah Diop's picture

You have a powerful voice

Andrea,

You write from a place of power and intelligence. Women of the world are lucky you found the internet at such a young age and decided on a career of journalism. With your desire to speak for the women of the world, I have confidence great change is inevitable. Your piece was strong and I feel you will grow into a great leader.

Thank you for this piece of writing and I look forward to reading more from you,

Sarah

Wishing you many Blessings,

Sarah

Andrea Arzaba's picture

Sarah!

Sarah!

Thank you for your kind words. I feel very honored...

I send you a big hug back to you!

We'll keep on posting :)

Andrea

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