Global Voices – The world is talking. Are you listening?
This project provides an opportunity for all the blogers, authors and translators to gather in one place in order to present the current situation of the blogosphere in their country. The Global Voices team is composed of members living all over the world, translating and reporting for the global audience what the bloggers throughout the world are saying.
Global Voices seeks to shine light on news that mainstream media often choose to ignore. Through a wide variety of technologies – weblogs, podcasts, photos, video, wikis, tags, aggregators and online chats – Global Voices is trying to call attention to conversations and points of view arising from the citizen media. The main goal of Global Voices is to protect the freedom of expression in the world and the right of the citizen-journalists to report on events and get their message across without any fear of being censored or prosecuted.
In addition to this website, Global Voices has an Advocacy program to help people speak out in places where their voices are censored online. The Advocacy program has a goal to build a global network of bloggers and online activists committed to the fight against censorship and the protection of the right to freedom of expression and free access to online information. Another program of Global Voices is Rising Voices . This program helps community voices to be included in the global conversation, by providing resources and funding of local groups. The target group are marginalized communities.
Another program of Global Voices is the Lingua project ; translation of the contents into 15 different languages in order to get the website closer to a wider audience.The Metamorphosis Foundation is also participating in the Lingua project, as an initiator of the Macedonian and Albanian Lingua websites. Aside from these two languages, the Global Voices contents are also translated into: German, Spanish, French, Italian, Malagasy, Portuguese, Arabic, Farsi, Bangla, Hindi, Chinese (Simplified), Chinese (Traditional), Japanese.
"Any additional languages for which there is momentum will be added to Lingua. Lingua volunteer translators receive credit for their work and can gain valuable exposure or build translator portfolios that way. Mostly, Lingua translators are helping bridge worlds and amplify voices. If you would like to get involved, contact the site manager of one of the projects above."
Global Voices Citizen Media Summit: 27-28 June 2008, Budapest, Hungary
The annual Global Voices summit dedicated to citizen media was held in Budapest, Hungary on June 27-28. The conference gathered together all the GV activists, as well as many journalists, bloggers and other interested parties in one place.
The summit started with the keynote speeches of the Global Voices founders – Ethan Zuckermann and Rebecca MacKinnon . After the brief introduction, they presented the idea from which Global Voices was born.
The first day of the summit was dedicated to censorship, which is very common in some parts of the world. Speakers from all over the world were presenting their problems and the methods that they are using for publishing their story online. Many of them are using SMS, Twitter and other services in order to get their message across. One of the sessions during the first day was dedicated exactly to the tools used for avoiding censorship, out of which “Tor” was highlighted as the most adequate.
The second summit day was dedicated to other Global Voices projects such as Rising Voices and Lingua. At the very beginning of the first day, a short video for all the current Rising Voices projects was displayed and the audience had the chance to get familiar with the activities. There was a presentation about how the growth of blogging, social networking and micro-blogging services, such as Facebook and Twitter, video and photo sharing websites, as well as YouTube and Flicker, and the spread of mobile technology provides an opportunity for the common citizens to participate in the democratic process in countries like Iran, Kenia, Armenia and Venezuela.
At the end of the second day, Lingua – the successful “subsidiary” of Global Voices had its own session as well. During this session, the Macedonian, Albanian and Hindu language were once again presented as new members of the Lingua family, and the official inclusion of Italian language was also announced. The last session of the summit was used to discuss how the bloggers can fill the gap with new, creative fashions when the traditional media are not able to report, for instance – in cases of natural disasters or political crises.
The new grantees from the Rising Voices project were selected at the end of the Summit and gratitude was expressed to all the sponsors and friends of Global Voices, as well as to all the volunteers and participants.