What Web 2.0 means to me
I think the most exciting thing about Web 2.0 is the opportunity to share stories and knowledge with a worldwide community, just knowing you are not alone in facing difficulties and problems gives me strength to speak out and make a difference to not only my life but others around me. With Web 2.0 those around me are not just the people I see everyday but a community of people from every part of the world who share a vision of a better place where women can, and do, have real equality.
It brings the opportunity to hear untold stories, written and filmed first hand and free from the censorship of governments and media organisations. Being part of global movement brings strength and solidarity, reading and seeing the stories not only adds to my knowledge but allows me to be a part of the movement for change. I am able to see how other people have found solutions and information to address difficulties and dilemmas in ways I have never imagined.
Some of the problems faced by women are horrendous and often are suppressed by a culture that forbids women to speak out against them. For the first time women are able to use global networks to tell their stories. The joys and successes enjoyed by women, breaking down barriers imposed by isolation, poverty, discrimination and suppression to achieve great things should have access to an audience of the world. Equally the reality for many of the misery of abuse and degradation faced by women who are otherwise denied a voice needs to be heard. The culture of shame imposed on women and girls to perpetuate abuses against them needs to be exposed for the cruel and inhumane practice that it is and not covered up by silence.
The lack of access to the internet is a significant barrier to the empowerment of women whether this is due to physical or financial constraints it will restrict opportunities to interact with others, find information, solutions, solidarity and self development that this connection with the world through links including World Pulse can offer.
For me, being able to use Web 2.0 tools like facebook and blogs enables me to be in contact with friends and colleagues wherever they are, to keep up to date with new opportunities and developments that can enhance my work and personal life and to empower the women I work with to look beyond their current circumstances to see there are other ways of looking at things or other ways of living than the status quo. I hope that as I become more familiar with all of the opportunities offered by using new media including developing networks and posting video I will be able to share my knowledge with emerging civil society organisations in my work and address the isolation experienced by people living on one of the most isolated communities in the world.