Full article here: http://dlvr.it/LrHGd
Acclaimed social thinker and best-selling author Malcolm Gladwell continues to assert that as far as promoting activism goes, social media is not the powerful tool it’s cracked up to be. Despite recent reports that rebels in both Egypt and Tunisia relied heavily on Facebook and Twitter to communicate, Gladwell believes that the websites offer little more value than that:
I mean, in cases where there are no tools of communication, people still get together. So I don’t see that as being… in looking at history, I don’t see the absence of efficient tools of communication as being a limiting factor on the ability of people to socially organize.
Gladwell goes on to point out that social media tools might actually be detrimental to revolutions in that they offer totalitarian governments the opportunity to “spy” on demonstrators.
I have to say, I’m a Malcolm Gladwell fan. I’ve read The Tipping Point and Blink and enjoyed them both. If we were not in the midst of working on a documentary that surveys the power of the Internet as a collaborative tool, I might have to agree with Gladwell. But right now, I still think I’d have to side with Clay Shirky.
Well, my goal of blogging once a week on online tools for social change lasted just one week…fortunately I have something you all should know about, so I am back on the wagon!
Although our official screening campaign for The Last Survivor won’t officially launch until April, some screenings have already begun. So we decided to release our action video player, also known as a “Spark,” today! Special thanks to Call2Action for building this for us.
What is so great about this video player is that it not only plays the trailer on any website, blog or Facebook feed, but without leaving the site you are watching it on you will find actions to help prevent genocide, work with refugees, or bring the film to your community.
Just click on the “share” tab to grab the code for your blog. Click the Facebook icon and the video will drop right into your status update. Your friends will be able to watch the trailer without leaving their Facebook homepage!
Please take a minute and share this amazing film with your friends and family:
Also, check out Call2Action and their many other “sparks!”
Happy 100th Anniversary to International Women’s Day! I’m a little late in my well wishes, but the sentiment is still there.
This is my first blog post for Righteous Pictures and after following Michael Kleiman’s always entertaining “This Week in RP” and Alexandra Bunzl’s inspiring post, “Can Art Change the World?” I”m a little nervous. For RP I hope to blog weekly on Technology and Social Change: How new online and mobile technologies are accelerating positive change around the world. You may also hear me talk about storytelling fairly often as its not the tools themselves that are creating change, its how people are using them to tell their story and allowing all of us the opportunity to see into each other’s worlds.
Being International Women’s Day, I wanted to highlight the launch of a new website, called Gawaahi, by my friend Sana Saleemand her Gawaahi co-founder Naveen Naqvi. I’m highlighting their website today not just because they are women, but because they are giving a voice to women in Pakistan. I had the honor of meeting Sana at the International Youth Conference in Islamabad in December, during which she skillfully schooled the Minister of Information on the government’s education policies.
In their own words, “Gawaahi.com is home to digital stories of Pakistan. Stories of abuse and survival, the testimonies of the survivors of the worst floods in Pakistan’s history, the narratives of Pakistanis celebrating their individual identities are just some examples of what we have for you. Our team finds stories that are under-reported in the mainstream media.”
Gawaahi.com serves as a platform for anyone (not just women) in Pakistan to submit their story on their own. Gawaahi also goes out into local communities to seek out stories and gather opinions, usually on video, from the people of Pakistan. Through their blogs posts and videos, they able to put a spotlight on the individuals, stories, and events that are often ignored by traditional media, which faces government and military control and intimidation.
One of the videos I watched most recently was of a seventeen year old girl telling her story of how after insulting a man, she was attacked by him with acid. I have heard about acid attacks on women many times before and have always been horrified. But watching this brave young woman stare straight into the camera and unabashedly tell her story, without the dramatic music and setting of a scripted, highly-produced video, effected me more than all the news stories of unnamed women I had read in print.
With an Islamic government and terrorist bombings nearly everyday, many of us have a negative idea of what life in Pakistan is like, and know very little about the actual people there, myself included. Gawaahi offers people in Pakistan a microphone for their voice and the rest of the world an insight into the stories and opinions of Pakistanis that news media rarely covers.
If you do one thing for International Women’s Day, please go to the website and just watch a few videos and learn from these incredible women. I think (and hope!) that like me, you will see a whole new side to Pakistan.