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Online Tools in Civil Society Activism, Conflict Sensitive Journalism, and Cross Border Communication


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13th August, Istanbul, Turkey

Published in: News & Politics, Technology
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Online Tools in Civil Society Activism, Conflict Sensitive Journalism, and Cross Border Communication

  1. 1. <ul><li>ONLINE TOOLS IN CIVIL SOCIETY ACTIVISM, CONFLICT-SENSITIVE JOURNALISM, AND CROSS-BORDER COMMUNICATION </li></ul><ul><li>ISTANBUL, TURKEY </li></ul><ul><li>Onnik Krikorian Caucasus Regional Editor, Global Voices [email_address] [email_address] </li></ul>
  2. 2. What is Global Voices? <ul><li>Global Voices is a community of more than 300 bloggers and translators around the world who work together to bring readers reports from blogs and citizen media everywhere, with an emphasis on voices that are not ordinarily heard in the mainstream media. </li></ul><ul><li>Global Voices is translated into more than 30 languages by volunteer translators, who have formed the Lingua project. Additionally, Global Voices has an Advocacy website and network to help people speak out online in places where their voices are censored. </li></ul><ul><li>We also have an outreach project called Rising Voices to help marginalized communities use citizen media to be heard. Technology for Transparency examines the use of online tools in increasing transparency and accountability globally. </li></ul>
  3. 3. Global Voices Impact <ul><li>Four websites most consistently account for links between countries: YouTube , Wikipedia , the BBC and, a distant fourth, Global Voices Online . The last of these, launched at Harvard University in 2005 […] works to create links between bloggers in different countries, and to find what it calls “bridge bloggers” […] </li></ul><ul><li>The Economist, 2 September 2010 </li></ul><ul><li>Working relationships with BBC, Reuters, Pulitzer Center for Crisis Reporting, La Stampa and many others. Frequently quoted by CNN, BBC, New York Times, The Economist etc. </li></ul>
  4. 4. MENA Special Coverage Twitter @gvmena
  5. 5. Caucasus Special Coverage Twitter @gvcaucasus
  6. 6. Situation in the S. Caucasus <ul><li>Armenia - February 2008 presidential election, 10 dead, State of Emergency declared - Media 'Not Free' (Freedom House) - 187,520 Facebook users (as of 1 August 2011) </li></ul><ul><li>Azerbaijan - Foreign radio stations taken off the air January 2009 - Media 'Not Free' (Freedom House) - 431,600 Facebook users (as of 1 August 2011) </li></ul><ul><li>Georgia - August war with Russia - Media 'Partly Free' (Freedom House) - 640,400 Facebook users (as of 1 August 2011) </li></ul>
  7. 7. Internet Use
  8. 8. Blogs: The new Samizdat?
  9. 9. Non-politicized Activism
  10. 10. Progressive Youth Movements OL! Azerbaijan
  11. 11.
  12. 12. Tweeting Protests
  13. 13. Eynulla Fatullayev Campaign
  14. 14. Novelty and Innovation <ul><li>Mary Joyce of the Meta Activism project has warned that a key factor in successful online activism appear to be novelty – it’s hard to articulate “best practices” because one of the best practices is to be the first to try a particular technique. If we take the lesson from Fatullayev’s release that Twitter campaigns, focused on individual public figures who use Twitter, leveraging offline media attention are a useful strategy, it seems likely that campaign organizations will adopt the technique and use it to the point where future implementations aren’t worth an article or a blog post. </li></ul><ul><li>Ethan Zuckerman , Global Voices Co-founder </li></ul>
  15. 15. 10 Tactics for Activism
  16. 16. Platforms for Engagement
  17. 17. Russia-Georgia War
  18. 18. New & Social Media in Conflict <ul><li>Anyone who believes that all citizen media are objective and impartial is either mad or hasn't actually read any citizen media. […] What's become very difficult is using citizen media to understand what's actually happening on the ground. As we all know, some of the reports from both camps in the South Ossetian conflict were likely manufactured and inaccurate. This sort of situation can get even more complicated when there aren't impartial journalists on the ground. </li></ul><ul><li>Ethan Zuckerman, Global Voices co-founder </li></ul>
  19. 19. New & Social Media in Conflict Ceasefire Liberia
  20. 20. Caucasus Conflict Voices
  21. 21. Positive Response <ul><li>Mr Krikorian […] found Facebook to be an ideal platform to build ties... </li></ul><ul><li>The Economist, A cyber-house divided </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>[…] Onnik Krikorian reports that Facebook has created a space where young Armenians and Azeris […] can explore friendships that would never otherwise develop... </li></ul><ul><li>CNN, Does Facebook unite us or divide us </li></ul><ul><li>[…] bloggers such as Onnik Krikorian are overcoming intense nationalist propaganda to establish contact with the other side of the Karabakh conflict divide. It is still a small movement but […] an inspiring example... Thomas de Waal, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
  22. 22. Questions & Discussion <ul><li>[…] the internet is not magic; it is a tool. Anyone who wants to use it to bring nations closer together has to show initiative, and be ready to travel physically as well as virtually. As with the telegraph before it—also hailed as a tool of peace—the internet does nothing on its own. </li></ul><ul><li>The Economist , A cyber-house divided </li></ul>
  23. 23. Links <ul><li>Global Voices Online </li></ul><ul><li>Global Voices Advocacy </li></ul><ul><li>Rising Voices </li></ul><ul><li>Technology for Transparency </li></ul><ul><li>Caucasus Conflict Voices </li></ul>