The intricate relationship between the internet and activism was discussed by a series of experts on July 13, when the New America Foundation held a conference entitled “How to Ignite, or Quash, a Revolution in 140 Characters of Less: The Promise and Limitations of New Technologies in Spreading Democracy.” Although the conference focused on revolutionary activism, the conclusions reached by the panels apply to anyone who uses the internet as a way to generate social change.
The Tamagotchi Nature Of Social Networks... - http://bit.ly/nbNicg (via @elinamberg) << Sounds very familiar!
as with my initial enthusiasm for tidying up my socks, underwear, and T-shirt drawers, my interest quickly evaporated and now I pop people into just one G+ circle. All I'm doing is recreating my Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter networks on Google+, which made me think: why? I'm doing it because, as with other important web experiences, I recognize that you can't know the value of these things until you do them, and you are in them -- as far up to the neck as possible. Twitter is the best example of this effect: if you aren't in it then you will never get it -- no matter how many articles you read about Twitter. I never possessed a Tamagotchi, the tiny little electronic toys representing a virtual pet that required regular care and feeding through pressing the right buttons throughout the day, or they would "die." But my daily chore of keeping my digital presence alive across all my social networks feels like each one of them acts like a modern day, adult-themed Tamagotchi.
Born in Jordan, of Syrian origin, raised in Canada and studied and worked in the US, Sinan Khatib now calls Cairo home. He recently joined the Egyptian group-buying site Offerna, bringing ...
“In the US, it’s all about credit cards. Here, two thirds of the purchases that are happening on e-commerce sites are COD. It’s a totally different dynamic.” And that isn’t the only challenge. Khatib lists other challenges a US startup could face trying to make it in Cairo – navigating the neighbourhoods and hiring the right sales staff alone would be complex and potentially disastrous. That’s where a site like Offerna comes in. “The real massive value that people who understand how to localize appropriately and can deliver to the big guys, would be operations. How hard is it to create a landing page, to have SEO and offline marketing – that’s global thinking. Everyone’s doing it the same way. Groupon can sort that out on their own. What they cannot sort out themselves is operations and that is the key to why no one other than Egyptians could make this work. I would even go so far as to say even other Arabs in general would struggle. It won’t be impossible, but it would be a struggle. Let alone someone who doesn’t speak Arabic.”
The online outpouring of anger and sympathy after a weekend bullet train accident in China killed at least 39 people has highlighted a robust criticism that exists online, sometimes beyond the reach of even the most powerful Chinese Internet censors.
Dutch companies expect to increase their marketing budgets for social media by 30 percent in the coming year, while the number of employees active in social media will double, according to survey of 60 companies by Booz & Company. Mainly smaller companies are experimenting with social media, while mid to large companies are slower to adapt. Smaller companies, with sales of less than EUR 25 million, use mainly LinkedIn (80%), Facebook (77%) and Twitter (65%). Larger companies, with sales of over EUR 500 million, are mostly active on YouTue (60%), internal platforms (65%) and sites where consumers can compare products (35%). Mid-size companies, with sales of EUR 25-500 million, are lagging and are the least active on social media.
Governments and social media have reached a tentative partnership. While the Internet is no longer a "Wild West," people in power are still trying to figure out how best to approach online communities and their social tools.
We’ve chosen a few examples to illustrate some of the many ways government is embracing social media. Have a read through some of these initiatives and let us know in the comments how your own government or political representative is putting social media to good use. The list is neither exhaustive nor does it try to summarize the entirety of a government’s social outreach. It is instead meant to start a conversation. [USA, Canda, Russia...]
In looking at the world around, us, the shift that is the most apparent to many is the pace of technological change, with in the order of 100-fold increases in processing power, storage efficiency, and fixed and mobile bandwidth over the last decade. However I believe that the degree of social change over the last decade has been at least as much as that of technological change, if not more, across countries, cultures, and contexts. On the face of it, much of this social change has been driven by technology. The freer flow of information, enablement of expression and participation, ability to connect across boundaries, and rise of powerful open source technologies have helped to shape new values. Openness, transparency, authenticity, participation, opportunity are values that stem from the technologies that have dominated the last decade. Yet it could rather be that our shifting social values (or perhaps our underlying values that have long been yearning for expression) are shaping the technologies we develop.
Marieme Jamme: Social media is transforming communication about a continent that did not always have the chance to speak for itself...
Africa's "cheetahs" are changing their continent by investing seed capital in small businesses such as agricultural programmes, or helping young women to develop small businesses, and social entrepreneurs are bringing their voices to the world stage. These changes and progress deserve more exposure, because they are key to African development. There is a growing confidence among the African cheetahs. Social networks are talked about in villages, schools, and fast-growing cities where the middle classes are now demanding access to quick information. Africa has never had good PR, but for the first time we are witnessing a paradigm shift in narratives about the continent. Why is that? One reason is that more transparent, user-generated content is breaking through, with websites holding leaders to account.
data shows that Africa is a really dynamic market for social networking...
Africans are active participants in the social media industry, here are a few examples: Motribe – This South African company enables you to create your own mobile social network with speed and ease and offers you great social tools to power your mobile social network MXit – A South Africa-based mobile social network. Over 27 million registered users, adding over 40,000 every day. Check out this cool infographic about MXit Adloopz – An innovative Nigerian startup that puts a social twist to advertising on the internet Personera – Personera lets you create custom artifacts from your content on social networking sites like Facebook Nikohapa – A Kenyan startup that offers Foursquare-like checkins made simple and that reward you with discounts for checking in to partner stores Ushahidi – Crowdsources information using multiple channels including social networking platforms like Twitter Swift River – An Ushahidi project that adds super data processing to data coming from sources of unstructured information such as a twitter feed Zoopy – Another South African company that focuses on mobile video ForgetMeNot Africa: bridges the huge gap between the internet and mobile messaging worlds allowing any mobile phone to send and receive email and chat message on any carriers network. Quirk eMarketing – A digital marketing agency that also helps companies make use of social media for great results. Quirk has also spawned other cool companies in social media such as BrandsEye that creates great tools for online reputation management and crowdsourcing company IdeaBounty. And as far as group buying is concerned, Groupon has inspired many an African groupon clone. There are numerous African companies playing in this area – Rupu and Zetu in Kenya, DealDey in Nigeria, and a whole lot of others in South Africa
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