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The Power Of The Net


Talk for Rotary Club Petaling Jaya on June23, 2009

Talk for Rotary Club Petaling Jaya on June23, 2009

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  • Blogger David Armano posted for help for an abused Rumanian immigrant who cleans houses. 3 children, youngest has Down syndrome. Daniela, age 9, Brandon, age 6, and little Evelyn age 4. Daniela is divorcing her spouse after years of abuse. In recent years her mortgage went unpaid and she's lost her house. As of this moment, Daniela's family is staying at our house and we are trying to help her find a one bedroom apartment for her family to live in.  With Evelyn, her youngest having Down's Syndrome and Daniela herself being a Romanian immigrant with very little family support she literally has no one to turn to. Except us (all of us). Daniela cleans houses when she can leave her family. I'm not even going to tell you what she gets paid—it's obscene. Right now her options are pretty limited, aside from an apartment, there is only a group shelter. Not very pretty. 545 people would donate $16,880.
  • Assisted in developing a website for Women’s Aid Organization in 2000 and trained two in-house people remotely to take over site after handover. Two years later receive word that site had saved a life! A distraught son in London, worried about his last phone call to his mother, could not get through via phone, looked up any Malaysian website and found wao.org.my and called. WAO sent a person to house in Damansara, it rarely does that, usually those seeking help come to them. House was accessible, the mother was found very distressed condition, having taken something. She was taken to nearest clinic.
  • http://www.silencespeaks.org/stories.html * The Center for Digital Storytelling (http://www.storycenter.org/) is a California-based non-profit arts organization which helps young people and adults design and produce 3-5-minute personal digital stories. The “Silence Speaks” Digital Storytelling Project (www.silencespeaks.org) was created to connect survivors and witnesses of abuse with their creativity and make their voices the centerpiece of violence prevention and social justice work.
  • Haji Mohamad wanted to learn how to design web pages, took a bus to Taiping, and attended classes. First time he walked into the class, all the boys there immediately hushed up until he revealed that he was not the teacher. Used to be teased by his kampung folk brethren and used to get headaches for staring at the PC a lot.
  • In Jan 2009, 40 goons of Hindu fundamentalist group Sri Ram Sena beat up women at bar and lounge called Amnesia in Mangalore. Two women were hospitalized. The video of the attack was posted on YouTube. Sena Chief Pramod Muthalik said they also planned to protest Valentine’s Day and any couples found in pubs would be dragged to the nearest temple to be married. Police arrested most of the men involved in the incidents and Muthalik himself was held on the eve of Valentine’s but not before TEHELKA journalist Nisha Susan turned to Facebook and formed a protest group called “ Consortium of Pubgoing, Loose and Forward women”. As the group grew exponentially within two days, Susan decided to launch an offline activity via a blog called the Pink Chaddi campaign. The idea was to send Sri Ram Sene chief Pramod Muthalik’s boys pink underwear. Over 39,000 people joined the Facebook group within ten days from all over the world and dispatched a variety of underwear to Sene’s offices. The page was later hacked.
  • It was non-violent. It shamed the perpetrators and brought global attention to the issue as it struck a chord with women around the world. It wasn’t easy like an email petition which had low transactional costs and wouldn’t have had the same impact. The protesters had to mail in the panties, some scrawled with the word biotry, discrimination and intolerance on them.
  • INTERNET TO AID TSUNAMI VICTIMS When the Rotary Club of Colombo Regency, Sri Lanka, invited a man to speak, about web logs at a lunch-time meeting in November, members had no idea that only a month later they would use their new knowledge to create such, a Web site and raise tens of thousands of dollars to aid Sri Lankan survivors of the world's deadliest tsunamis in recorded history. Just one day after massive waves slammed into coastlines along the Indian Ocean, the club created, a weblog that allows people to immediately donate money, food, and medicine - and read about what the club is doing with the goods and funds. The case shows how Rotary clubs can use technology to respond to emergencies. In the case of the Colombo Regency Rotarians, they used text messaging, e­mail, an electronic commerce site, and a weblog - also known as a blog­ to quickly muster international attention and provide relief to survivors of the disaster. "Our club has been successful because we have been able to reach out to the international community through the Web site," said Chamila Wickramasinghe, who is the secretary of the club and was its first president. "You've got to be open to new technology." Perhaps the club embraced new technology because it is a relatively new club with young members. Charted in 2002, the club has a roster of 23 members with an average age of about 33, Wickramasinghe said. She added that about half of them, including herself, had been Rotaractors. Little did they know that on Sunday, 26 December, a knack for using technology would come in hand Wickramasmghe recalled how the efforts al came together. That Sunday morning, she was relaxing at her parents' house in Colombo when she learned during a phone call with a fellow Rotarian that a wave-had struck the area. It turned out to be just one of a series of tsunamis, triggered by an earthquake with a magnitude of 9.0 off the western coast of northern Sumatra, Indonesia. More than 150,000 people have died, according to the United Nations. Indonesia has suffered the most deaths, followed by Sri Lanka. Wickramasinghe, who owns a Sri Lankan spa, didn't have to worry for her own safety because her parents' home was far enough away from the beach. After watching details emerge on the news, at about 2 p.m. she used her cellular phone to send a group text message to Colombo Regency Rotarians to tell them to start collecting clothes and dry rations for survivors. That evening, after watching the death toll rise, she sent a text message to the club's board members, calling for an emergency meeting the next morning. At the meeting, Wickramasinghe called the Texas office of lankafood.com, an e-commerce Web site commonly used by expatriates to send goods to family and friends in Sri Lanka. Wickramasingne knew of the site because she lists her spa on it. By the end of the day,she had posted a link on its Web site so that people could donate money or purchase food and medicine for Sri Lankans. Also that same day, the club's 2003-04 president, Tharanga Gunaratne, set up the blog - her first ever - by using Blogger, a Web publishing service. Blogs are Web sites that allow the authors to quickly post information and receive comments from readers. In the club's case, the blog included the link to lankafood.com and it mentioned a bank account number where people can donate money, which will be used to buy food and rebuild houses and schools, Wickramasinghe said. As of 4 January, about US$ 50,000 had been deposited in the account and an additional $ 35,000 had been pledged, said Wickramasinghe, a former manager of global payments and cash management for HSBC in Sri Lanka, the bank handling the account. After the blog was posted on the Web, club members e-mailed friends and family members to advise them of the blog, the bank account number, and the link to lankafood.com, which began receiving orders within 24 hours. Under the arrangement, lankafood.com, which does not benefit from the agreement, sends the orders for food and medicine to the Colombo Regency club, which then buys the items from the local wholesale market and distributes them. Wickramasinghe and some other club members have been paying for the goods with their own credit cards while they wait for the wiring of funds from lankafood.com. Wickramasinghe had to increase her credit limit. As of 4 January, about US$32,000 worth of orders had been placed through lankafood.com for the Rotary Club of Colombo Regency to buy, Wickramasinghe said. But the club has not just been gathering money and food. It also has a plan for distributing the goods and using the financial donations. The day after the tsunami, the board mapped out a three-phase strategy for relief efforts: The first phase is ongoing and involves meeting survivors' immediate needs by providing water, food, and clothing. The second leg involves conducting health camps to treat and prevent diseases at sites for displaced Sri Lankans. The last leg is long-term and focuses on rebuilding schools and homes. The club also aims to link up with other Sri Lankan Rotary clubs to distribute the supplies. The club has already coordinated with the Rotary Club of Batticaloa to distribute food and medicine in that city on the eastern coast of Sri Lanka. "We want to do work jointly because if it's long-term (assistance), we can't do it alone," Wickramasinghe said.
  • Gen Y tends to rely on their network of friends and their recommendations, not traditional ads. "Ads that push a slogan, an image, and a feeling, the younger consumer is not going to go for,'' says James R. Palczynski, retail analyst for Ladenburg Thalmann & Co. Instead, they respond to "humor, irony, and the unvarnished truth."
  • Universal McCann Comparative Study on Social Media Trends April 2008 http://www.universalmccann.com/Assets/2413%20-%20Wave%203%20complete%20document%20AW%203_20080418124523.pdf
  • social media is about sociology and less about technology


  • 1. The power of the Internet Rotary Club of Petaling Jaya, June 23rd, 2009 By Julian Matthews, Trinetizen Media
  • 2. 3 stories
  • 3. 1: Daniela’s story
  • 4.  
  • 5. 2: The WAO story
  • 6. 3. Jamie’s story
  • 7.
    • “ It was an extremely important part of my healing process to make the story. I hope folks in Malaysia have the opportunity to make such stories for themselves. I entered the workshop intending on making a macro political analysis of violence against women, and had a four-page script. The teacher came up to me and circled the center of my script and said, this is actually your story! I couldn't believe it. But she was right. The story was specifically about my mother. What I learned is that people care more about stories when they are in multimedia format , putting them onto video actually allows some people to hear a story where they wouldn't be able to stomach having you tell them the same story sitting in front of them,” Jamie, abuse survivor.
  • 8. 3 lessons about the Web
  • 9. Lesson 1: “ It’s never too late to learn,” says Haji Mohamed Abu Hassan, 64-year-old retired school teacher, Kg Jana Sambungan, Kamunting. Named oldest Malaysian webmaster by fan at that time, after winning more than 35 awards for website design. Published in Golden Surfers, CNet
  • 10. The web is a powerful means to self-organize and effect change Lesson 2:
  • 11. Case study: Pink panty protest
  • 12.  
  • 13.  
  • 14. A few committed people can make a significant difference Lesson 3:
  • 15. Tsunami: Dec 26, 2004
  • 16. Crisis blog
    • In November 2004, Indrajit Samarajiva, a Canadian of Sri Lankan descent was asked to speak at lunch gathering at Colombo Regency Rotary Club, Sri Lanka to talk about blogging…
    • A month later, when the deadly tsunami struck, the members set up a blog reliefforsrilanka.blogspot.com and used it to raise money + coordinate donation of shelter, food, medicine to aid survivors
    • "Our club has been successful because we have been able to reach out to the international community through the Web site," said Chamila Wickramasinghe, who is the secretary of the club and was its first president. "You've got to be open to new technology."
  • 17.  
  • 18.  
  • 19.  
  • 20. Club receives award
  • 21. “ The cost of all kinds of group activity – sharing, cooperation and collective action – have fallen so far so fast that activities previously hidden beneath the floor are now coming to light.” Clay Shirky, Here Comes Everybody
  • 22. The Internet circa 1993
  • 23. Internet in 2009
  • 24. Rise of broadband in Malaysia Note: Internet penetration est. 62.8%, about 15.8m June08, Source: Internetworldstats.com/MCMC
  • 25. Phone penetration 62.8% 96.8% Internet penetration We are nearing the tipping point… Source: Malaysia, Q42008, MCMC
  • 26. Tomorrow’s members are today’s “digital natives.”
  • 27.  
  • 28. Where Is Everyone?
  • 29.
    • 83%
    have watched video clips Source: Universal McCann Comparative Study on Social Media Trends April 2008
  • 30. “ In 2009, if you’re not on a social networking site, you’re not on the Internet ”
  • 31.  
  • 32.  
  • 33. www.twitter.com/rotary
  • 34. Hint: Share some stuff.
  • 35. Why use social media?
    • Fish where the fish are: People are increasingly spending more time in social networks rather than portals or destination sites.
    • Reach more people: Introduce non-members to your activities and projects
    • Spread your message: Your content can be embedded on blogs and websites, further disseminating your messages
  • 36. Iran: Neda Agha Soltan
  • 37.
    • Everyone is the media
    • We are no longer passive consumers, we are active producers and creators
    • This change is fundamental, permanent and messy. Live with it.
  • 38.
    • Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world.
    Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has. Margaret Mead, cultural anthropologist
  • 39. (Attribution: Some slides were updated from a presentation by Marta Z Kagan)
  • 40. Julian Matthews e: [email_address] w: trinetizen.com b: trinetizen.com/blog t: twitter.com/trinetizen m: +60-12-915-9528