Emma Watson, trolls and a feminist internet

Jac sm Kee on 25 September 2014 | 12,769 views
Within days of her highly visible and publicised speech, Emma Watson became the subject and target of violence. The threat and reality of using women’s sexualised bodies as weapons to humiliate, shut them up or blackmail them into submission is an increasingly prevalent expression of violence against women online. Jac sm Kee, APC´s Women´s Rights Programme manager shares her insight on the emerging reactions, and also criticizes the framing of the UN #HeForShe campaign since it seems to position women as passive subjects needing to be rescued.

EROTICS, activism and feminist porn

Caroline Tagny on 27 August 2014 | 4,443 views
Caroline Tagny interviewed Rohini Lakshané, who used to work with EROTICS India, and Sheena Magenya, from the Coalition of African Lesbians during the Global meeting on gender, sexuality and the internet in April 2014 to ask them how they understand pornography from their respective contexts, and how do they engage their activism with the intersection between sexual rights and internet rights.

Feminist Principles of the Internet

APC on 20 August 2014 | 26,485 views
Over three days, the participants discussed and debated intersections of gender, sexuality, and the internet – not only as a tool – but as a new public space. In thinking through these issues, the participants at the meeting developed a set of *15 feminist principles of the internet*. These are designed to be an evolving document that informs our work on gender and technology, as well as influences our policy-making discussions when it comes to internet governance.

Becoming an agent of change

Lamia Kosovic on 19 August 2014 | 3,894 views
Are feminists bored with online activism? Cyber feminists’ minor politics and affirmative political approach often presents us with dynamic, thematic and changeable maps of affinities, of political kinship, and there is a strong potential in the crafting of such unities. However, there are more than just a few obstacles that feminists in the virtual communities have to deal with. “But their engagements continue,” states Lamia Kosovic in this article written for GenderIT.org. “Cyber feminism today is more about cartography, where maps can always be mapped differently. And our task is to become active agents in the production of changes in order to bring intrusions capable of dismantling this organism and its conceptual ties,” she incites.

Marginalised desires and the internet

Nyx McLean on 12 August 2014 | 3,690 views
This article explores marginalised desires and the need individuals have to express these desires online, especially when it may not be safe to do so offline. Attention is brought to the need to protect individuals’ rights to engage in sharing content and expressing their desires online; and the need for digital security to protection their data and identities. The article also discusses notions of identity, community and the need to form safe spaces (including the need to report violence experienced online).

Thirty years after 1984: Who’s looking at you?

Melissa Hope Ditmore on 12 August 2014 | 3,750 views
Recording cameras everywhere, facial recognition software, gait-recognition technology, unauthorized collection of pictures: It is widely known now that private companies are working with states on surveillance, but does this affect women and girls in a particular way? “While online security is for everyone, women and girls are frequent targets of malicious attacks online, and they suffer greater consequences from online attacks than men,” affirms Melissa Hope Ditmore in this article written for GenderIT.org.

The not-so-strange feeling that someone’s always watching you

Richa Kaul Padte on 12 August 2014 | 5,907 views
“The neighbour resembling plastic-bag-recording Ricky in American Beauty, who takes surreptitious pictures of you while collecting the day’s post. That picture of me that I posted 7 years ago on MySpace that’s now doing the rounds on some misogynistic Reddit thread. That nanny cam set up to protect your 6-year-old niece whose footage ends up on a child porn site. For most women, Big Brother lives a lot closer to home than the NSA. In fact, it’s all the Little Brothers that we’re more concerned about,” affirms GenderIT.org writer Richa Kaul Padte in this spirited article on surveillance, privacy, and its gender implications.

Interview with Nana Darkoa: Adventures from the bedroom of an African woman

Flavia Fascendini on 8 May 2014 | 4,824 views
Three (and many more) online is not a crowd – neither online nor offline. That is what the multi-award-winning blog "Adventures from the bedrooms of African women" posits. In this interview, one of the blog's founders and writers, Nana Darkoa from Ghana, talks about how this space started, what the boundaries are, and what it takes to build a safe and free space where African women can openly discuss a variety of issues related to sex, pleasure and sexuality – in spite of trolls and bad kissers.

Erika Smith: "It’s society’s responsibility, the companies’, and our countries’ to keep us safe"

on 7 May 2014 | 3,334 views
People Links is a monthly online gathering hosted by May First/People Link members, for members and open to the public. On 27 March they hosted a discussion on technology-related violence against women and the tensions that exist between combating hate speech and the right to freedom of expression. The discussion featured Erika Smith from the APC Women's Rights Programme (WRP).

The coming of (digital) age: How African feminists are using the internet to change women's lives

Minna Salami on 5 May 2014 | 10,506 views
In this article, the writer Minna Salami states that while the digital wave is marked by more diversity than previous feminist waves, with people of all walks of life contributing, it is nevertheless predominantly the ways that white/western feminists challenge patriarchal structures using the internet that has garnered attention. "However, important milestones of the global feminist struggle go ignored if we look only at the ways that the white/western feminist movement uses the internet," she adds. The fact is that feminists everywhere are using new technologies to fundamentally change society but the achievements of online feminisms in Africa, for instance, are hardly known within the continent, let alone outside it. Salami challenges this general trend by sharing a few examples on how African feminists are using the internet to change society.