New media and citizen journalism: The case of Groundviews

Presented the work I had done with Groundviews to a group of activists from South Asia recently, noting that using social media platforms on the web, combined with mobiles, it is increasingly possible to bear witness to and report on inconvenient truths, no matter what the timbre of government. I also flagged that in contexts where mainstream media, for whatever reason, where unable and unwilling to report on issues like war crimes, graft and corruption by those in power and gross human rights abuses, citizen journalism offered new avenues to highlight these issues. I also noted that many NGOs / CSOs and activists in the region, fearless to get on to the streets, were also largely ignorant of and resistant to the potential of new media to strengthen their personal and institutional advocacy and activism. This I said needed to change, and provided examples where the more creative use of web based media, through Groundviews, generated eyeballs and attention on places, actors, issues, processes and events that would otherwise have gone unnoticed, or violently erased.

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