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World within a click

‘ Didi (sister in Hindi), I saw your pictures on Facebook and I have opened an account as well,’ echoed my sister’s voice over the phone, traversing thousands of miles . The excitement was befitting because she lives in a very small village called Boko, in Assam, India where technology and overall development has only started to seep in. I have to admit, that both us were literally hollering at each other over her this new found accessibility and suddenly an exuberant world of communication unfolded before us. And this is exactly what I find exciting about Web 2.0.The promise and actuality of infinite possibilities and opportunities; of bridging distances; of providing a digital platform to link, share and express our voices.
To further expound my point, Web 2.0 and its technological advancement can play the role of a catalyst and add onto women’s empowerment. It opens new doors for information sharing and the capacity of reaching out to the millions of internet users. It transcends the mores of traditional media and allows the user be the manager of her own content, notwithstanding the censures of the society; Government or the repressive power. Because some women out there dared to write and expose, I and thousands like me, got to know about some heinous customs such as teenage breast ironing, genital mutilation, banishment during menstruation and similar such heart wrenching facts.

We are already witnessing some of the successes of Web 2.0 from across the globe. Most recently, women from Egypt were actively blogging, tweeting their angst against a disrupt and collapsing country. Closer home in India, few ordinary women managed to run a controversial campaign called ‘pink chaddi (underwear) against the moral police of India, who in open daylight physically attacked few girls coming out of a pub in Bangalore. These bands of women ran offline and online campaigns on Facebook, blogs, twitter and created a massive mobilsation of voices and sent pink underwear in thousands to the offenders, as a condemnation to their barbaric act. This movement created ripples as women from all across India, poured in with their voice and support. The proliferation of Web 2.0 helped in magnifying the efforts and garnering support which otherwise would have been limited in its reach and effect.

The tools of Web 2.0, especially Facebook, online news media and blogs; have proved very useful and empowering. I am using these tools extensively for both professional as well as personal use. Web 2.0, has allowed me to connect, reconnect with friends, larger networks, professional groups, etc. Online forums and campaigns has opened avenues for me to link up with like minded professionals fighting for the rights of women and children to education, safe environment, health and social equality; or protest against crimes such as human trafficking, exploitation of children and other such malice. And through blogs, I have been able to refine my thoughts and visiting others, have been able to expand my knowledge and insight.

Comments

Ana Dutra's picture

Dear Pinky, this is a great

Dear Pinky,
this is a great article!! I also had a experience like you describe with you sister. In my case, social media connected me to my godfather, 1.000 km distant and 40 years older than me.
I hope we learn together all the possibilities web 2.0 can offer! We are going to fly high!!
My best,
Ana

pinkypradhan's picture

Thanks Ana...I am looking

Thanks Ana...I am looking forward to an increase in interaction on Web 2.0!!!

Pinky

CindyColes's picture

Good story

Hi Pinky,

Thanks for telling the Pink Chaddi story. It's shocking to hear about such behavior - I feel for the girls who were attacked. But I'm encouraged to read how women in India are fighting back, and that they're using the web as a tool for mobilization.

Great work! I look forward to reading more of your stories.

Cindy Coles

viochan's picture

Great story!

Dearest Pinky,
Great article and great use of personal examples to highlight your story. My sister and I have lived thousands of miles away for 16 years now and thanks to FB, I feel like we're together every day. Needless to say, your story really made me smile.

You are funny and bright and your passion really comes through. Amazing piece - really.

All the best,

Violeta

pinkypradhan's picture

Hey Cindy Yes, when women are

Hey Cindy

Yes, when women are educated , they feel empowered.More so if they have economic independence. For a broadly traditional society like India, such action by girls and women led group was unheard og. But we had to retaliate. It is nobody's business if women want to have a drink in a pub. Sadly, in India, the common belief is such that going to one or drinking means that you are immoral both sexually and culturally.

I appreciate you taking out the time and reading it.

Cheers
pinky

Pinky

pinkypradhan's picture

Hey Viola..I am happy that

Hey Viola..I am happy that you found my article interesting. I am still coaxing my parents to have an internet connection back home, so that I can video chat with them.Yes, me and my sister are having a real good time on FB..commenting on each others pictures, status, sharing articles and videos.Enjoying every minute of it.

Smiles!!
Pinky

Pinky

Heather Shepp's picture

Thank you for sharing Pinky!

Dear Pinky, WOW.

I am so inspired by your assignment, specifically the experience you recently had with your sister, through technology! I also really liked that you brought the example of technology overcoming repressive sensorship into your assignment. Your example of the pink underwear campaign brought a lot of perspective for readers, I cannot wait to research it myself and share with my friends.

Keep up the incredible work, you are thoroughly inspiring!

pinkypradhan's picture

Hey Heather, Let me know

Hey Heather,

Let me know whether you found information on the Pink underwear campaign. You may also want to look up at 'the blank project'. These are helping women voice their angst aginst the repressive Indian society. I am happy that you like my journal.

Much love
Pinky

Pinky

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