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VOF Week One: (It is not by chance that we have found ourselves here)


Meet Handala. The symbol that most people in my region relate to today is: a cartoon character. Handala hasn’t managed to grow up since the war, which turned him into nothing more than a damaged, barefooted refugee. This kid is always alone as he wanders around scenes of cruelty and horror, yet we do not see any reaction or expression on his face, for we cannot even see Handala’s face – he is only portrayed from the back.

On a broader level today, Handala could well be a reflection of who we are – we as lonesome individuals wandering amidst the noise and cruelty of the world, standing faceless, passive, poor and voiceless.

The so-called reality is thrown in front of us as we flip through our hundreds of channels and browse through the millions of sites made available to us. It all gets shoved in our faces between the ads and coffee breaks. Decisions are made, concepts are sold, flesh is labeled, wars are initiated and injustice is justified, and the minute of silence we get is rarely comforting and we do not mind it getting interrupted by the next ad. We observe it all in our passive/voiceless state as our lives get defined for us before we can manage to work it out.

What excites me about Web 2.0 is that in the midst of the chaotic noise and disqualified communication, I find myself to be connected with you. I doubt that it is by chance that we have found ourselves here and decided to stay for a while. You, searching and observing, are walking the same path with me.

Sure, the back of Handala may well be the reflection of the state of today's individual, but perhaps we as individuals are not really alone. Not all of us are too scared to open up our ears in fear of the change that listening might cause. Not all of us are holding on to our unquestionable truths with stubborn conviction. Through the same device, we connect. We make up our OWN media rather than have it shoved in our faces. We identity our OWN stories and relate based on our OWN shared values. In this new form of communication, we get to be a PART of the information-building-process, a PART of our own lives.




Yours is the first entry I have read since this process has commenced, and I love how you have addressed the subject of Web 2.0. You're right -- we are in this together, a part of something much grander than each of us individually. It is our shared ideas, stories, and visions that make this whole concept so powerful.

Thanks for your insight; I look forward to the remainder of your entries!

With love from Canada,


shiku steve's picture

Handala-the village woman

Arda, as I go though your wonderful and well pieced together piece,I reflects abit about this Handala.For A moment I think of that village woman who goT no knowledge,access or hope of ever interacting with the rest of the women.She face life hurdles alone, face oppression alone ,cries alone and finally beleive she is in her best position to face the tribulation.She believe men are superior thus,should shoulder anything that come her way. Without ever raising a voice.If we do not find and help this Handalas ,They will lot in men's hard rules!!!

Love Shiku

TUMAINI's picture


I agree with the comments above, Arda your piece is so well written and extremely insightful and i totally agree with your sentiments. Its so true and i certainly find myself these days so drawn in and at the same time so numbed by the all the information that is thrown to me by mainstram media and life.

Indeed this interface is such a great way to escape and interact with all the women and get to hear the real voices and know all that is going on around that we may not be aware of.

Nice to meet you, and i cannot wait to read more of your work.

Peace and Blessings

Maria de Chirikof's picture

not by chance

I really like that idea of it not being pure chance alone that we all came here like this. How it is something real we are feeling all over the world and our curiosity and desire to bring real change has all brought us to the same place.


LauraB's picture

We get to be a part

Taking part- yes we get to be a part. You've hit it- participatory process; creating, shaping, building this world we live in.
We're not passive in this process. Our world is the one we are creating. You are in it- in the middle of this process. Bravo!!

Nzasu's picture

Miss Israel

Its actually billions of sites there are over 6 billion websites today.New information is set to double every 72 hours refer to my post I think you will enjoy the read and the resources there.Curiosity what religion do you practice.

Jocelynbrazil's picture

VOF Listener

Hi there! My name is Jocelyn and I am evaluating your VOF assignment for week one. What an honor!!! It is so concise and beautiful. I loved the way you took a popular media metaphor for your country and used it to dialogue about the importance of Web 2.0. It really gave me insight into where you come from. I would have loved to hear even more details about daily life in terms of media in Israel because your writing style and your voice is so vivid and evocative. I would also love to hear even more personal details about you in your assignments. Thank you for sharing, I can't wait to hear more.

JaniceW's picture

Insightful perspective

Arda, I loved your approach to this topic and its originality. You hit the nail on the head and meanwhile, provided a thought-provoking perspective. It is a joy to read your post for VOF and I wish you all the best for the remaining projects. Janice

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