Wednesday, December 03, 2008

1.0 FTX Trip Summary

The Feminist Tech Exchange had been a dream come reality for APC particularly members like Jac sm Kee who has been looking for opportunities to build technical and media capacity of feminists. APC members from Asia, Latin America and Africa converged with the 130 women and men from around the globe and shared a space to express diverse views on how feminist approaches and practices can examine the field of information & communication technology. For capacity building, the 15 hours spent at the Monkey Valley resort, produced near-to-final projects ranging from radio programs, short videos and digital stories. Some of the videos were then shown at the AWID forum to all 2000+ delegates before the start of plenary or on large screens throughout the forum. As for the examination of feminist approaches to ICT, the plenary or dialogues addressed issues such as communication rights and policy implications (Anriette Esterhuysen, Executive Director, APC), violence against women and ICT (Jac) and women movement building (Srilatha Batliwala, Scholar Associate for AWID). Delegates became aware of the issues, but due to limited time, further discussions were seen to spill over to the AWID organized sessions, “Is the Internet Feminist?” and “Politics, Power and the Internet”.
I noticed that many participants were young Communication Officers from the respective organizations looking for improved ways to disseminate their advocacy work. I sat in on the wireless and mobile activism track which demonstrated technical applications for mobile phone activism and setting up community wireless networks.

I had the chance to meet for the first time some of IDRC’s ICT4D – Pan Asia research partners like IT for Change (India) and ISIS (Manila) and improve my knowledge on the Pan Asia programming for Gender. Some Acacia partners were also present such as Robert Kirunda (Uganda) from the new Acacia project, “Examining the Nexus between ICTs and Human Rights in Africa” (105271). It is fitting for this project to see the privacy rights, access to information and censorship issues from the feminist perspective particularly under those societies where websites are blocked and monitored for inappropriate content in the eyes of government.
Further Discussion: What was learned about the feminist practices of technology?
Output: The list serv also continues to be active as delegates send in links to their photos and lessons learned post-FTX.

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