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Enhancing women’s voices: From zines to blogs.

Speaking as someone who used to have her own zine by the age of 18, I can say that the emergence of Web 2.0 has completely revolutionized the way women communicate to exchange ideas, proposals and demands. The most exciting thing for me is that these tools, as opposed to independent publications we used to have before the massification of the Internet, allow us to expand the impact of our speech even more because we can get our voice to people who live in places that a few decades ago we didn’t even know where to locate on a map, all at a relatively low cost and in very different ways.

Part of the opportunities that Web 2.0 provides to the global women’s empowerment movement I think, is precisely this ability to connect with others who like us are interested in working for a given cause! They may live near or far from us, but in the age of the Web 2.0 that does not matter. Thus, our movement becomes a lot more stronger and stable, since it’s less likely to be broken or manipulated by the media or traditional powers once it has built not only local but also global support. In this sense we have seen lately how more and more women around the world are making use of the Web 2.0 to organize, denounce, or make visible their demands without fear, all the way from the Arab world revolutions, to the slut walks in several cities, the actions against femicide in Central America or other advocacy movements.

Based on my own personal experience, I can say that Web 2.0 has allowed me to get to know and organize with women's groups in Mexico and in other countries in order to raise my voice louder than before, and has made me more aware that even though we think we are alone, our cause is the same cause of many other women in the world. For example, thanks to Web 2.0 tools I've learned that there are courageous women in Saudi Arabia contravening the law that prohibits them to drive a car, that there is a feminist movement within the #15M of Spain, that there is an African association of women teaching other women how to use ITs, that there is an important women’s movement in Colombia in favor of peaceful resolutions to the armed conflict, that in Italy women organize to say Enough! to machismo, but most importantly, I’ve learned that these are great women who work very hard every day in order to protect and defend their rights, needless to say these examples have empowered me to keep going.

There’s no turning back. We young feminists are determined to take our place as agents of change and we will take on the Web 2.0!

Comments

katyrdz's picture

grammar

I hope I'm not making any horrendous grammar errors! :)

MaDube's picture

Wonderful post!

Dear Katyrdz

I did not see any errors because I was too engrossed in the spirit of your post. I loved the examples you gave in your second-last paragraph on how the efforts of women to empower themselves and other women have been profiled through Web 2.0. The examples create hope because they show how global the use of ICT's has become even though some continents might not be as technologically advanced as others. But there is still hope that if the struggle continues in this manner we will surely succeed.

Best,
MaDube

katyrdz's picture

Yes MaDube! I think women in

Yes MaDube! I think women in countries not as technologically advanced like you said are making a great effort in bringing technology to women and children in order to lessen the gap, I'm sure in a few more years we would have doubled the number of women with access to technology!

Carlotta's picture

Wow!!

You are thinking of grammar!! That was a brilliant article and i particularly liked the examples as well. You clearly did your research. Look forward to reading your other articles for the weeks to come.

katyrdz's picture

Thanks!

Thank you, I look forward to yours as well. I'm loving this program!

zoneziwoh's picture

Young Women For Change

Hi dear Sister, your words are touching and inspiring. I concur; young women are change agents too. And with the advent of web 2.0 and all its associated applications, we have seen proof to how women (young) are bringing meaningful changes in their communities.

Just like MaDube said, I am thrilled at the examples. It demonstrates your deep involvement and constant follow-up of all the recent development on women, locally and globally.

About the language skills, I believe a cross majority of Pulsewire members does not speak English as our first language, including myself. I also have issues with typos and syntax in making sensible sentences but that has not hindered my zeal. I will say, I am improving - at least when i go through my previous submissions and present, there is a lot of improvement. Since, we are here to learn, rest assure all is fine. You are doing great and your writing skills are not as bad as you think. Keep it up.

Stay Blessed

Zoneziwoh

Blog: http://zofem.blogspot.com/

facebook: Zoneziwoh

twitter: @ZoFem

katyrdz's picture

Thank you so much for your

Thank you so much for your encouraging words! I sure hope to improve my writing skills with the next assignments :)

zacyrus's picture

EXcellent

hi!
it's an excellent article. Looking forward a new article with new theme.
bye

Thanks for this article, katyrdz. I myself am a bit of a web dinasaur and it is enlightening to realise that younger people have the exposure so early in life to the wonderful world of the web. And not only that, but that you are prepared to use your knowledge and good fortune to share this with others. Well done.

I would like to, though, find out how we can reach the millions who have no access to the internet, many of whom are illiterate, but whose voices need to be fed through to those of us who have the tools, like Web 2 and 3.

Does anyone have information about systems which are used on the ground through intermediaries such as mobile phones for example, or radio - to get voices through?

There are some, such as Ushahidi (which I'm checking out at the moment - thanks PulseWire for this alert): http://www.ushahidi.com/about-us

Another one is a programme, using mobile phones as source of information, is called Jamiix developed by the Helsinki Deaconess Institute who are looking for new methods for finding young people who are at a risk of social exclusion and marginalisation. They partnered withAalto University, and youth services in South Africa.

The Jamiix counselling service, which was developed in Cape Town is seen as a tool to help youth workers get in contact with young people who have been stuck in their homes or in some other way remained outside society - for one reason or another. They use their mobile phones anonymously to contact youth workers. The phones are apparently security guarded so their parents and drug users do not have access.
     
In its home country South Africa, Jamiix has been a success. Up to half a million young people are using the service, reports Marlon Parker , the founder of the Jamiix counselling service.
    
  ”The entire project started from a certain school, where ten pupils began to use it. Then the word started spreading, and now we have a huge number of users”, Parker notes.
    
See http://www.hs.fi/english/article/Helsinki+is+to+introduce+youth+counsell...

Are there any other such platforms which anyone knows about, please?

Monica

I wish you nangamso, that is: May you continue to do the good work which you do so well
(a blessing from my ancestors, the Khoikhoi, the first people of South Africa)

Monica Clarke, Writer & Storyteller, bringing human rights alive.
I wish you 'Nangamso', that is: May you continue to do the good work which you do so well.
(A blessing from my ancestors, the Khoikhoi, the first people of South Africa).

Nezed's picture

Kat, can i give you an e-hug?

Kat, can i give you an e-hug? We women have come a long way and no turning back! Big thumbs up...

I do not aim for Perfection; Just excellence!

katyrdz's picture

Nezed!! I e-hug you back!

Nezed!! I e-hug you back! haha thanks for reading, we'll keep in toch! ;)

Stella Paul's picture

When loud enough, its heard

Dear Kat

Have you ever seen how little children connect? They speak in multiple languages, and yet get each other just fine! Because, they do not worry about being phonetically or grammatically correct and instead, catch each other's feelings and expressions. I feel that this is a forum where we are more inclined to read each other's feelings. And I can assure you, I just did that - got your feelings, heard your words. Web 2.0 has helped each of us speak louder and when anyone speaks loud, its ought to be heard.

Keep talking aloud!

Stella Paul
Twitter: @stellasglobe

katyrdz's picture

Hello Stella. Thanks for your

Hello Stella. Thanks for your comforting words! You are absolutely right, I think thanks to this forum we are getting to know wonderful women. Stop whispering, start shouting!

usha kc's picture

Dear Katy,, really inspiring,

Dear Katy,, really inspiring, powerful article, loved it sis.

Thuwaraha's picture

Dear Katy

"but most importantly, I’ve learned that these are great women who work very hard every day in order to protect and defend their rights, needless to say these examples have empowered me to keep going."

These lines inspired me alot.. Its nice... Go ahead and best wishes :)

Thuwaraha

katyrdz's picture

Thanks Thuwaraha! It's nice

Thanks Thuwaraha! It's nice to hear some many stories from wonderful women trough World Pulse!

spidercalf's picture

Hello!

from zines to blogs, i love it.
it is great.

fancychebii

katyrdz's picture

Thanks for the encouraging

Thanks for the encouraging words! Look forward to hear your stories as well!

Katharina's picture

Great post!

I can only side with what all the other great women have written: great post, Kat! I really like the examples you are referring to and I immediately checked them out myself. I'm also very fond of what you write about movements getting stronger, because they are not restricted locally, but take a global turn. As you write, that really makes them so much stronger. I'm very much looking forward to reading more from you!

Tari Andrea's picture

Wonderful story, Katyrdz!

Dear Katyrdz,

First, i'd like to say that u didn't make any mistakes! It wasn't a big deal for everyone for worrying their grammar. I understood what you have written though. Good story and you are one the young people in the world who cares about women's issues. I proud of you dear. Because me, myself, is a young woman too from developing country.

All i can say is you did great work and keep up the good things in your daily activities! Web 2.0 is also one of many tools that we use for broaden our network to make our voices bigger and bigger. I would be happy to read your following stories in the next assignments. :)

Warm regards,

Tari
Indonesia

--
M&E of The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria
Indonesia

"Be the change that you wish to change." - Mahatma Gandhi.

Tawjna's picture

Are You Ready?

Dear Katyrdz,

You + Web 2.0 = Women's Empowerment.

The beauty about this post is that I can sense your genuine care for the development of women. It is vivid in my head how your voice sounds in my ear. I can see you talking, only taking breaths when necessary because your passion compels you to get it all out.

When your voice is this loud, young lady, you need not fret too much about grammar.

Regards,

katyrdz's picture

Thank you so much for your

Thank you so much for your kind words Tawjna, you are really sweet! I appreciate very much all the support I get from the women at Wolrd Pulse! We definitely are building something importante here...

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