Newer posts are loading.
You are at the newest post.
Click here to check if anything new just came in.

February 24 2015

02mydafsoup-01

February 17 2014

Dancing and Rising for Justice in Southeast Asia

Filipino activists hold a 'One Billion Rising' dance protest near the Philippine presidential palace to push for greater subsidy to social services.

Filipino activists hold a ‘One Billion Rising’ dance protest near the Philippine presidential palace to push for greater subsidy to social services.

The ‘One Billion Rising’ campaign was supported by many groups and individuals in the Southeast Asian region. This year, the theme was broadened to include the call for justice aside from the particular demand to end violence against women.

In Cambodia, the violence inflicted on striking garment workers was highlighted during the preparation of the event:

…there have been crackdowns and violence on garment factory workers who demonstrated for better working conditions which resulted in many (casualties). Other female land rights activists had also been savagely beaten, arrested and detained without investigation. Reparations have never been made for the victims and until (today) the perpetrators have not been brought to justice

But the biking activity on February 14 was blocked by the police since it was seen as a threat to peace and order.

Cambodia's bike event was blocked by the police

Cambodia's bike event was blocked by the police

In Indonesia, ‘One Billion Rising’ activities were held in seven cities across the country.

The 'One Billion Rising' dance was performed in seven cities in Indonesia

The ‘One Billion Rising’ dance was performed in seven cities in Indonesia

'Rise for Justice' in Indonesia

‘Rise for Justice’ in Indonesia

Members of the Women in Hai Hau in Nam Dinh province, Vietnam led a practice session for the ‘One Billion Rising’ dance event. Below is a video of their rehearsal:

In Thailand, students of Chiang Mai University supported the ‘One Billion Rising’ campaign. Below is a video of their practice session:

Another 'One Billion Rising' photo in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Image from Facebook page of Lisa Kerry

Another ‘One Billion Rising’ photo in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Image from Facebook page of Lisa Kerry

In the Philippines, the women’s group Gabriela coordinated the ‘One Billion Rising’ campaign and they were able to mobilize thousands of women in various parts of the country. Joms Salvador, secretary general of Gabriela, explained the importance of the campaign to eliminate all forms of violence against women:

Sometimes, because of the impunity of poverty, human rights violations, violence against women and children, people tend to be desensitized. We need to realize that such situations must not be the norm and that these have to change. We need to act collectively and make our call for justice stronger because things could only get worse when we keep silent and just watch idly by.

In the city Davao located in the southern part of the country, the issue of corruption was underscored in the fight for meaningful justice:

With the state of the country marred by corruption especially with the anomalous use of the public funds, then all taxpayers should be with us in dancing to call for justice

'Justice' is the theme of this year's 'One Billion Rising'

‘Justice’ is the theme of this year's ‘One Billion Rising’

'Rise, Release, Dance' activity in Davao City, located in the southern island of Mindanao in the Philippines

‘Rise, Release, Dance’ activity in Davao City, located in the southern island of Mindanao in the Philippines

'Justice for typhoon Haiyan victims' is one of the demands of the campaign

‘Justice for typhoon Haiyan victims’ is one of the demands of the campaign

Workers called for a wage hike as part of the campaign for social justice

Workers called for a wage hike as part of the campaign for social justice

February 11 2014

International Open Data Day Set for February 22

Bloggers, hackers, designers, statisticians and other citizens who are interested in Open Data and Transparency will gather online and offline for the International Open Data Day on February 22, 2014. The event takes place to encourage governmental data openness.

Open Data Day is a gathering of citizens in cities around the world to write applications, liberate data, create visualizations and publish analyses using open public data to show support for and encourage the adoption open data policies by the world's local, regional and national governments.

Anyone can organize a local event in their city as long as the event is open for others to join. The attendees can participate in creating anything related to Open Data, be it with local or global applications, visualizations, scraping data from a government website to make it available for others or even organize a series of workshops with government officials, journalists or other stakeholders affected by open data.

The hashtag that will be used for the even is, #ODD2014. Some Twitter users have already started posting their comments on the hashtag.

Dozens of cities are participating in the hackathon.

International Open Data Hackathon

International Open Data Hackathon

Announcements are also made on Twitter for local events in different places.

The Open Data Day in Egypt, http://t.co/PdqDzokxcP

Add your city to the list if it is not already there, and start planning for a local event there.

February 09 2014

Public Buses Return To Cambodia’s Capital


Promotional poster of the Phnom Penh bus trial.

Phnom Penh residents in Cambodia have one month to ride public buses which is part of an experiment to re-introduce public buses in the country’s capital in order to reduce traffic congestion.

Phnom Penh has one million motorbikes (motorcycle taxi or motodup) and 300,000 cars but this expanding urban hub surprisingly doesn’t have a mass transportation system.

The Phnom Penh governor hopes the one-month trial which will end on March 4 will help convince Cambodians to use public buses:

…the purpose of this pilot project is to reduce traffic accidents and traffic congestion as well as to change the Cambodians’ habit from using personal cars to public buses.

Public buses were first deployed in 2001 but the program lasted for only two months because of lack of government subsidies and passenger interest. Aside from riding the motor taxis, Phnom Penh residents also use the popular tuktuks.

Abigail Gilbert sees several benefits of using the bus:

The last public bus trial, more than 10 years ago, was not popular, as locals preferred the door to door service of the two-wheeled variety. This new City Bus trial, partly funded by the Japanese International Cooperation Agency, will discover if attitudes have changed. There are some clear benefits for visitors to the city, including the icy air-con, the impossibility of bag snatching, a set fare, and a clearly marked route.

Phnom Penh resident and prominent blogger Tharum Bun welcomes the arrival of the buses:

We’ve talked a lot about traffic jam, too many motorcycles and vehicles, and no public transportation. Starting early this February, the bus will run on Monivong Boulevard. It’s an opportunity for most of us, who are willing to get back on the bus.

But Tharum learned that some motor taxi drivers are worried about the impact of the buses on their livelihood:

The motor taxi driver told me that he’s worried about this this public transportation as he’s got only one source of income.

The trial will involve 10 buses running every day from 5:30am until 8:30pm.

Many Phnom Penh residents were excited about the bus trial and they quickly posted photos of the public buses on Twitter:

*Thumbnail used is from @KhiriCambodia

February 06 2014

Pay Hike Ends Garbage Strike in Cambodia

Trash piled up for three days in Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s capital, as hundreds of garbage collectors went on strike to demand a pay hike and better working conditions. The strike ended on Wednesday, February 5, when workers agreed to a slight pay hike.

More than 400 garbage workers of the Cintri company refused to work last Sunday to protest their monthly salary of 65 US Dollars. They vowed to dance until their demands are met such as a $150 monthly pay, health bonus, and overtime pay during weekends.

Cintri, a subsidiary of the Canadian Firm Cintec, signed a 50-year exclusive contract in 2002 to collect Phnom Penh’s trash.

Initially, the management agreed to a slight salary hike:

Cintri management agreed to raise the basic monthly salary for general staff from $65 to $80, and from $70.5 to $95 for daytime waste collectors. Nighttime waste collectors were offered a salary increase from $97.5 to $110, and daytime garbage truck drivers were offered an increase from $110 to $120, and from $120 to $135 for nightshift drivers.

But workers rejected the package. After several negotiations, and after several days of mounting trash in the city, both parties came to an agreement. Street cleaners will now get $90 per month and truck drivers will receive $130. In addition, a health care center will be funded by the company. The uniform fee charged against employees will be scrapped too.

During the brief garbage strike, Phnom Penh residents complained of stink coming from the uncollected trash in the streets. Below are some reactions on Twitter:

The launching of Cambodia's first public bus was not enthusiastically reported because it coincided with the strike

After the end of the strike, garbage workers started collecting trash in the streets

The garbage strike came right after the government violently dispersed a strike by garment workers who have been demanding a $160 monthly minimum wage. It was feared that the garbage strike will be dispersed as well because of the increasing presence of military and police forces in the city.

*Thumbnail is from @LTO_cambodia

February 03 2014

Human Rights Video: 2013 Year in Review

A video by WITNESS on the Human Rights Channel of YouTube wrapped up some of the most significant protests and human rights abuses of 2013. Dozens of clips shot by citizens worldwide are edited together to show efforts to withstand injustice and oppression, from Sudan to Saudi Arabia, Cambodia to Brazil.

A post on the WITNESS blog by Madeleine Bair from December 2013, celebrates the power of citizen activism using new technologies including video, while readers are reminded that the difficulty of verification and establishing authenticity remains a big obstacle.

“Citizen footage can and is throwing a spotlight on otherwise inaccessible places such as prisons, war zones, and homes,” says Bair. “But given the uncertainties inherent in such footage, reporters and investigators must use it with caution.”

Reposted byiranelection iranelection

January 22 2014

Cambodia Garment Workers Demand $160 Monthly Minimum Wage

Image from Facebook page of Dae-oup Chang.

Image from Facebook page of Dae-oup Chang.

The poster illustrates the $160 monthly minimum wage demand of Cambodia garment workers.The current standard is $80 but the government is only willing to grant a $15 increase. A nationwide strike was launched by workers last December but this was violently dispersed by the police early this month.

January 11 2014

PHOTOS: Brutal Crackdown of Cambodia Labor Strike

Soldiers threaten a female bystander during a crackdown of the labor protest in Phnom Penh. Photo from Licadho

Soldiers threaten a female bystander during a crackdown of the labor protest in Phnom Penh. Photo from Licadho

The Licadho human rights group has uploaded a set of photos showing the brutal crackdown of a strike conducted by garment workers in Cambodia. The workers have been demanding an increase in their monthly minimum wage which is currently pegged at 80-100 US dollars.

January 05 2014

One Year in Asia

Antoine Lavenant, with his girlfriend spent a year in Asia – China, Laos, Cambodia, Thaïland, Malaysia, Philippines and Sri Lanka. The video is a brief record of their exciting journey.

January 04 2014

Opposition Rallies and Public Gatherings Now Banned in Cambodia

Civilians wearing red arm bands joined the police in dispersing the crowd gathered inside the Phnom Penh Freedom Park. Photo from Licadho.

Civilians wearing red arm bands joined the police in dispersing the crowd gathered inside the Phnom Penh Freedom Park. Photo from Licadho.

After the violent dispersal of striking garment workers, the government of Cambodia has banned the political opposition from staging more rallies in Phnom Penh, the country’s capital. Even the gathering of two persons in the streets is now prohibited.

Four people died yesterday and dozens were injured after police opened fire at garment workers who have been demanding a monthly minimum wage of $160. Currently, garment workers receive $80 a month.

Workers got the support of the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party which vowed to raise wages if it assumed power in the country. The opposition has been holding daily protests at the Phnom Penh Freedom Park, also known as Democracy Plaza, to press for the ouster of the government of Prime Minister Hun Sen which has been accused of manipulating this year’s election results. The opposition has boycotted the parliament sessions even though it has 55 seats.

The opposition was able to gather tens of thousands in the streets since December. The protest was the biggest anti-government rally in Cambodia in recent years.

Today, the protest camp has been forcibly removed by government forces. The local government said the opposition’s protest permit was cancelled because of security issue.

Licadho, a human rights group, described how the protesters were dispersed from the Freedom Park:

The violence began at around 11.00 this morning when hundreds of police and military police blocked roads surrounding Freedom Park and rapidly and without warning moved in to clear the park of protesters. As they approached, the residing protesters, many of whom were monks or women with their children fled in fear leaving behind their belongings. The forces were accompanied by hundreds of thuggish civilians wearing red arm bands who used metre-long steel poles to beat and intimidate the peaceful protesters

Licadho’s report about the street patrolling of uniformed officials accompanied by civilians wearing red arm bands was echoed by Ruom:

On January 4th, seemingly intent on preventing any further protest, police surrounded Freedom Park, the major rallying point for the Cambodian National Rescue Party – the main opposition party. Uniformed officers and plain clothed citizens, armed with wooden rods and pieces of rebar, forced CNRP supporters – largely comprised of rural seniors – out of the park. For the next hour they destroyed the tents and stage that had been host to rallies since October

Twitter reports also verify the brutal protest crackdown which the government ordered today:

Even journalists were attacked by thugs in the streets:

Ou Virak of the Cambodian Center for Human Rights is angered by today’s event and warns against more violence coming from the state:

…the time for free speech is over. The events that have taken place over the past several days are a major step backwards for Cambodia in terms of democracy and human rights.

The opposition CNRP announced that it will cancel a scheduled rally on Sunday because of the crackdown but it condemned the government repression including the reported issuance of arrest warrants against its leaders.

January 03 2014

Police Open Fire on Striking Garment Workers in Cambodia

Four are confirmed dead and dozens injured after police and military clashed with striking garment workers in the industrial area of Phnom Penh, the capital city of Cambodia.

Tens of thousands of garment workers have been on strike since the last week of December after the government refused the demand of unions to raise the monthly minimum wage to $160. The current minimum wage is only $80 dollars and the labor council is only willing to grant a $15 dollar hike in basic pay. As protests intensified, the government agreed to raise the minimum wage by another $5.

But workers have been firm in asserting their $160 minimum wage demand. The garment sector is a $5 billion dollar export industry in Cambodia which employs more than 600,000 workers. Many of the leading clothing brands in the world get their supply from Cambodia, which has one of the lowest minimum wage rates in the Asia-Pacific.

John Vink reported what he saw on the scene of the clash:

At least 3 people were shot dead and several were severely injured by hundreds of bullets fired by armed forces during a brutal crackdown in the morning of January 3rd on barricades set up by thousands of striking workers on Veng Sren road, in the industrial area of Phnom Penh. Several others were arrested and subsequently tasered, beaten up or beaten unconscious

Tension rose yesterday when police arrested several protesters, including monks and human rights activists. In response, protesters set-up road blockades which the police tried to clear in the morning. Witnesses claimed that police used live ammunition in dispersing the protest.

Licadho described the crackdown as the “worst state violence against civilians to hit Cambodia in fifteen years.” The human rights group is demanding that

…security forces must now put an immediate end to the use of live ammunition against civilians and ensure that all those injured are safely transported to hospital without delay

Ou Virak of the Cambodian Center for Human Rights thinks that the police acted violently to protect the interest of big business:

While many of the political demonstrations which have taken place over the last few months have been met with restraint from the security forces, there is an increasingly clear link between the excessive use of force by security forces and the protection of the big business of Cambodia. Of the 25 cases where we noted excessive use of force, 21 were related to strikes by garment workers or protests over land.

Workers got the support of the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party which vowed to raise wages by $160 if it is able to assume power in the country.

The opposition has been holding daily protests at the Phnom Penh Freedom Park to press for the ouster of the incumbent government which has been accused of manipulating this year’s election results. Prime Minister Hun Sen has been in power in the past three decades although his party lost many seats in the recent parliamentary polls. The opposition has boycotted the parliament sessions even though it has 55 seats.

Many workers have joined the opposition rally which could further undermine the Hun Sen administration. Labor unions have vowed to continue the protests until their demand is granted by the government.

Opposition leader Sam Rainsy announced their intention to file charges against the government in relation to the bloody crackdown of the strike:

We will lodge a complaint to the ICC so that those criminals in power who today ordered soldiers to open fire on workers, be prosecuted.

For its part, the government accused the opposition of provoking the violence to get public sympathy.

The strike of garment workers and the opposition rally produced the biggest ever street demonstration in Cambodia in recent decades. After today’s violence, the political crisis in Cambodia is expected to worsen.

*Thumbnail used is from Facebook page of CNRP, Cambodia's opposition party.

December 31 2013

Human Trafficking in Southeast Asia

The Asian Forum of Parliamentarians on Population and Development has published a policy briefer that tackled the extent of human trafficking in Southeast Asia.

Many Southeast Asian countries are at the bottom of a lot of the world's supply chains, including for food, garments, and technology. Yet few countries in the region have adequate laws for addressing corporate responsibility for human trafficking, including in their supply chains.

The primer also provides country-specific recommendations on how to best address the human trafficking issue in the region

December 27 2013

Cambodia’s Garment Workers Hold Nationwide Strike for Pay Hike

A worker holding a sign calling for a $160 dollar monthly minimum wage. Photo from the blog of Mu Sochua

A worker holding a sign calling for a $160 dollar monthly minimum wage. Photo from the blog of Mu Sochua

Tens of thousands of Cambodia’s garment workers participated in a nationwide strike to press the government to raise the monthly minimum wage to $160 dollars. The current minimum wage is only $80 dollars and the labor council is only willing to grant a $15 dollar hike in basic pay. A government official also told workers that the demand for a $160 minimum wage will be met only in 2018.

The garment sector is a $5 billion dollar export industry in Cambodia which employs more than 600,000 workers.

Striking workers put roadblocks in Phnom Penh aside from protesting in front of the Ministry of Labor. As strikes continued to grow, factories were told to cease operations. John Vink reports:

The roadblock in front of the Ministry of Labour was kept all through the day by workers striking for a salary rise.

Another roadblock, in front of the Special Economic Zone in Kambol, some 19 km outside of Phnom Penh, was set up by striking workers after they were pushed back by riot police when trying to enter the SEZ. The SEZ was sealed off with a double layer of containers and fences with barbed wire.

Below is a video which shows a clash between workers and the police:

Workers got the support of the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party which released a statement in favor of the $160 dollar minimum wage demand:

If the minimum wage is not raised to $160 immediately, rising food prices and living expenses will make it impossible for garment workers to address their basic needs, and strikes that have pledged the garment sector lately will continue.

The opposition has been holding daily protests at the Phnom Penh Freedom Park to press for the ouster of the incumbent government which has been accused of manipulating this year’s election results. Prime Minister Hun Sen has been in power in the past three decades although his party lost many seats in the recent parliamentary polls.

Many workers have joined the opposition rally which could further undermine the Hun Sen administration. Labor unions have vowed to continue the protests until their demand is granted by the government.

Meanwhile, factory owners have warned that the ongoing strikes will negatively affect the local economy and the conditions of workers. They also urged the government to adopt a ‘zero tolerance on illegal strikes.’ This appeal was criticized by the Cambodian Center for Human Rights which wants to address the ‘root causes of the labor dispute’:

CCHR is concerned that such statements calling for zero-tolerance on illegal strikes will only exacerbate problems within the garment sector. Regardless of the legality of the strike, a zero-tolerance policy will only ignore the root causes of the labor dispute and most likely lead to further violent crack downs against workers and union members.

The current strike has put a spotlight on the plight of garment workers in Cambodia and in particular the necessity for the government and the garment industry to come up with a better plan on how to improve the welfare of workers.

IMF Silent on Corruption in Cambodia?

Jessica Evans of the Human Rights Watch criticized International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde for being silent about Cambodian's corruption problem when the IMF leader visited the country early this month:

Lagarde missed a major opportunity in Cambodia to highlight governance problems, but she can right this by speaking out when she returns to headquarters. If the IMF’s message on corruption is to be more than rhetoric, Lagarde needs to convey it both publicly and privately each time she meets with leaders of the world’s most corrupt nations.

December 24 2013

Are Volunteer Programs Empowering — or Exploitative?

This article by Angilee Shah for The World originally appeared on PRI.org on December 19, 2013 and is republished as part of a content sharing agreement.

Giving time to a cause you believe in can be extremely rewarding. As Demba Kandeh, a volunteer worker in the Gambia, explained, “Volunteering is a beautiful thing.”

But when do volunteer programs empower and when do they exploit? Does building this kind of workforce benefit communities? Would essential services simply not be provided if it weren't for volunteers, as several people told Amy Costello in her investigation of volunteer health workers in Senegal.

With help in part from the Global Voices community of bloggers, we found perspectives from around the globe.

Laura Morris, 28, an editor [for Rising Voices!] in Paris, spent five months as a volunteer for a small NGO in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, and seven months as a volunteer for an organization that provides care for the elderly in London. Morris says she understood why the Cambodian organization did not pay her — she was the only foreigner there, and they could not have afforded the salary — but she thinks that the London nonprofit simply took advantage of a tough job market and gave her work that should have been performed by a paid employee.

“I volunteered for it, so it was my decision to work with them, but I was also asked to do work that I absolutely should have been paid for, that was much higher than entry-level,” Morris says.

Have you volunteered for a nonprofit organization? Share your own experiences and follow the hashtag #TrackingCharity on Twitter to discuss.

7 Rallies that Rocked Southeast Asia in 2013

1. ‘Million People March’ Against Corruption in the Philippines. Filipinos were outraged after a whistleblower exposed how legislators have been systematically stealing from their pork barrel allocations. Netizens called for a massive gathering in Luneta, the biggest park in the country’s capital to push for the abolition of pork barrel. Days before the August 26 rally, the president and congress vowed to abolish pork but it didn’t stop citizens from joining the event. It turned out to be the biggest rally during the administration of President Benigno Aquino III.

2. Thailand protest against the ‘Amnesty Bill.’ Various sectors, including those supportive of the government, rejected the controversial ‘Amnesty Bill’ which was approved by the parliament on November 1. Opposition to the bill emerged after it was reported that the amended version of the measure would benefit corrupt politicians and human rights violators. In particular, the opposition party said the bill will ‘whitewash’ the crimes of former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra who fled the country after being found guilty of plunder by a local court. The Senate eventually voted down the measure.

3. Anti-Government protest in Thailand. The shelving of the unpopular ‘Amnesty Bill’ didn’t end the protests in Thailand. More rallies were organized by the opposition but this time they started to demand the ouster of Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra whom they accused of being a proxy of her elder brother. Rallies have intensified in the past few weeks and protesters were able to occupy several government buildings. Yingluck announced that the parliament will be dissolved to make way for an election on February. But the opposition said they will boycott the polls and instead they wanted to set-up a People’s Council. Thailand’s political crisis is expected to deepen in the next few weeks. This video shows the size of a rally in Bangkok last November.

4. Cambodia’s post-election protest. Tens of thousands participated in several assemblies, marches, and camp-ins organized by the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party since September to protest the alleged manipulation of electoral results by the ruling Cambodian People’s Party. The ruling party won by slim majority after it took 68 seats compared to the opposition’s 55 seats. It was the ruling party’s worst electoral performance since 1998 which has been in power in the past three decades. This video shows a protest scene at Phnom Penh's Freedom Park last September:

5. Malaysia ‘Black 505’ post-election protest. On May 8, 2013, hundreds of thousands gathered in Kuala Lumpur, the country’s capital, to protest the outcome of the election which gave the administration coalition a slim majority. ‘Black 505’ refers to the May 5 General Election which was tainted by allegations that the ruling coalition committed massive electoral fraud to remain in power. The ruling party, which has been in power since the 1950s, lost in the popular voting but it still retained majority of the parliament seats. The series of protests, which spread to other provinces, was also referred to as the ‘Malay Tsunami’. This video shows the protesting crowd assembled in a stadium:

6. Rallies in Singapore’s Hong Lim Park. Thousands gathered in Singapore’s Hong Lim Freedom Park on May 1, 2013 to protest the government’s White Paper on population. The May Day protest was the second time that a big crowd gathered in the park to speak out against the population program which many Singaporeans criticized since it would mean the hiring of more foreign workers. Then on June 8, 2013, an assembly organized by the ‘Free My Internet’ movement became the ‘largest blogger-led protest’ in Singapore which aimed to oppose the government’s new licensing scheme for news websites. The video below shows some of the Singapore blogs which replaced their homepages with a black image in solidarity with the protest:

7. Indonesia General Strike for Pay Hike. Workers in Indonesia have launched a two-day general strike on October 31-November 1 aimed at pressuring the government to raise the minimum wage. Tens of thousands joined the factory shutdowns, union visits, and rallies across the country although the turnout was smaller compared to last year's general strike.

Thousands of workers left production in a Sanyo factory. Photo from Facebook page of Tia Claudia E. Mboeik

Thousands of workers left production in a Sanyo factory. Photo from Facebook page of Tia Claudia E. Mboeik

December 06 2013

#GVMeetup: Recreating the Virtual Global Voices World for Real Audiences

You've been reading their stories and have been following them on Twitter for years, but have you ever met the Global Voices authors and translators covering your countries?

This winter we launched our first official global in-person ‘meetups’ led and facilitated by Global Voices members, who live and know those local communities in six countries. 

And we are already half-way through!

They will be sharing their experiences of bringing the virtual Global Voices mission, energy and love to very real offline audiences in their countries.

In Karachi, Kampala, Cairo and Skopje dozens of participants have already met GV members who facilitated peer learning and knowledge sharing in the field of citizen media. And #GVMeetup facilitators are getting ready to woe audiences in Porto and Phnom Penh next!

More information on our Google + event page.

 

 

November 18 2013

How Social Media is Changing Cambodian Politics

Colin Meyn explains how the ‘rapid spread of social media is altering Cambodia’s political landscape.’ The young electorate desirous of change plus the aggressive campaigning of the opposition in the Internet made a huge impact in the recent elections. Interestingly, the Prime Minister also mentioned Facebook several times in his first major speech during the opening of the parliament: “The government has no policy to close Facebook, but I would like to appeal to people not to let Facebook become a tool to damage social stability and insult people.”

October 31 2013

Meetup with Global Voices!

gv-logo-below-square-144You may feel as if Global Voices community members are already longtime friends after being a regular reader of their posts and translations highlighting the online conversation in their countries. Perhaps you may also follow them on Twitter or are familiar with their digital projects and activities. Certainly these virtual connections can help make the world feel like a smaller place, but there is still something elemental about offline interactions that can only help strengthen these online bonds.

Throughout the months of November and December, we are organizing six global in-person ‘meetups’ led and facilitated by Global Voices members, who live and know those local communities.

However, these gatherings are much more than networking social events. They are opportunities for knowledge sharing, skills building, and future collaboration among peers who share similar missions.

Perhaps you have an idea for a citizen media outreach project and you want to find potential partners. Or you may want to learn new strategies for digital storytelling for a global audience. You can also learn more about Global Voices’ work and how to become a volunteer. These and much more may be a part of the half-day program.

The six cities for this first round of meet ups are:

Karachi, Pakistan – November 1, 2013
Cairo, Egypt – November 16, 2013
Kampala, Uganda – November 16, 2013
Skopje, Macedonia – November 30, 2013
Porto, Portugal – December 14, 2013
Phonm Penh, Cambodia – To be announced

These meetups are free to attend, but RSVPs are required. With each meetup, we will publish a post, as well as a Facebook Event invite with more details on how to sign up and the proposed agenda. This post will also be updated with these details. Special invitations will also be sent to previous applicants from our Rising Voices microgrant competitions, many of which come from these cities.

We're also launching a hashtag – #GVMeetup to follow along even if you one of these meetups are not scheduled for your city.

These six meetups are part of a pilot project to explore ways that our vast Global Voices community in all corners of the world can help facilitate peer learning and exchange among readers and other individuals and organizations in the field of citizen media. We hope to build upon this experience for more meetups in 2014!

In the meantime, for more information please write to rising [at] globalvoicesonline [dot] org

October 28 2013

Is Cambodia a One-Party State?

Anirudh Bhati rejects the position by some analysts that Cambodia has become a one-party state after the main opposition party boycotted the inaugural session of the National Assembly:

…it would be erroneous to assume that Cambodia has relapsed into a one-party state simply based on the premise that the current assembly is being boycotted by the opposition just as it would be inaccurate to characterize the United States as a two-party system.

Older posts are this way If this message doesn't go away, click anywhere on the page to continue loading posts.
Could not load more posts
Maybe Soup is currently being updated? I'll try again automatically in a few seconds...
Just a second, loading more posts...
You've reached the end.

Don't be the product, buy the product!

Schweinderl