South Africa

[COLUMN] How womxn in the global south are RECLAIMING SOCIAL MEDIA to shine the spotlight on disability

Samukelisiwe Mabaso on 10 Oct 2017
Womxn in global south are making revolutionary uses of social media, and this includes people challenging casual and everyday ableism. In her column Samukelisiwe Mabaso looks at three amazing projects from different countries that are revolutionizing how disability is talked about - how they are changing language, discourse and perceptions

[COLUMN] How womxn in the Global South are RECLAIMING SOCIAL MEDIA to celebrate being queer

Samukelisiwe Mabaso on 22 Sep 2017
In her third column, Samukelisiwe Mabaso explores how groups and people, artists and performers who are lesbian, gay, bisexual are using the internet and social media to spread messages about love, diversity, and acceptance. This includes projects like Coalition for African Lesbians, Gaysi, Ahwaa and others.

[COLUMN] Access and Beyond (5): How do we address the gender question?

Chenai Chair on 17 Aug 2017
In this last column by Chenai Chair following the gender implications of the research by Research ICT Africa on access, she explores how researchers and activists can proactively explore gender dimensions. Even as ITU figures point to a progressively increasing gender digital divide, there are steps to take to understand and address this divide.

[COLUMN] Access and beyond (4): Gendered barriers to internet use

Chenai Chair on 14 Jul 2017
Gendered barriers to internet access can range from social and cultural barriers imposed within family or by partners to extraneous factors relevant to all - such as affordability of data and devices. In this column Chenai Chair examines the specificity of how access is different for women and men.

[COLUMN] How women in the Global South are RECLAIMING SOCIAL MEDIA to promote body positivity

Samukelisiwe Mabaso on 11 Jul 2017
In this column, Samukelisiwe explores how women in the global South have started using social media to make up for the lack of representation of black and brown women in mainstream media. Women of colour, people with disability, gender non conforming persons and others now use the internet to explore their image and their body, and form communities that celebrate different ways of being.

[COLUMN] Access and Beyond (3): Navigating mobile costs in communication

Chenai Chair on 15 Jun 2017
Africa is flooded with zero rating services such as Free Basics (Facebook’s zero rating scheme) and other subsidised data strategies. Do these schemes make internet more affordable and bring access to more people? In this column Chenai Chair examines whether ordinary people perceive such schemes as useful.

[COLUMN] How women in the global south are RECLAIMING SOCIAL MEDIA to combat femicide

Samukelisiwe Mabaso on 8 Jun 2017
In this new column on reclaiming social media for addressing women's issues and feminist concerns, Samukelisiwe Mabaso begins by looking at the rising rates of femicide in South Africa (and other parts of the world). Various spontaneous movements led and powered by women have arisen and use technology and social media to amplify their voices and ensure their demands are met.

[COLUMN] Access and Beyond (2): Motivations for internet use

Chenai Chair on 11 May 2017
In this column, Chenai Chair explores motivations of internet use through the ResearchICT Africa study in Rwanda, Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa. Business, local and global communication, social ties, and curiosity seem to be the main motivators. By understanding why people go online, we can better shape interventions for a connected society.

[COLUMN] Access and beyond (1): Navigating the gendered cyberspace

Chenai Chair on 12 Apr 2017
In this column series, Chenai Chair explores the barriers to accessing the internet in four countries in Africa - Rwanda, Nigeria, South Africa and Kenya. The study in particular looks at the impact of affordability of internet and subsidised data services, and what impact this has on people in different locations (countries, urban-rural), of different genders, and so on. In the first column, Chenai examines what kind of methodology is suited for research on access.

Internet use barriers and user strategies: perspectives from Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa and Rwanda

Chenai Chair on 28 Mar 2017
The introduction of OTT services that replace regular messaging applications in built into a phone, definitely has an impact on internet use. OTT services have become the main entry point to the Internet for most users in the prepaid mobile environment that characterises most African markets. This comparative country study, based on focus groups conducted in November 2016 in Kenya, Nigeria, Rwanda and South Africa, sought to develop evidence of why people, use the Internet the way they do, specifically when their data is subsidised. The study is meant to inform policy making and especially discourse around internet rights.

A Woman Coder's Journey (Women-in-tech)

GenderIT.org on 23 Feb 2017
Judith Owigar speaks about her journey entering into tech spaces, and also about their work with Akirachix in Kenya helping other women along the same journey marked by trials, exclusions and success. While speaking about the barriers of education in science and technology (STEM), she says that what inspires her work in many forums around women in tech in Africa, is that eventually a woman should have the space to make her own choices.

Digital Storytelling: All our stories are true and they are ours!

Jennifer Radloff on 13 Nov 2016
It is a sacred act to tell and to listen to stories. Some of our stories are rooted so deep in our cells, psyches and hearts, that it takes an act of courage to find the words to tell them. We each contain a multitude of stories that shape and make us who we are. It can also be a political act to tell a story. We conceptualise digital story telling as a recording and documentation method which foregrounds the voice and experiences of story tellers as primary in the process of storytelling.

Censorship in South Africa: Protecting or policing?

Sonia Randhawa on 18 Jun 2012
The Spear is a painting that depicts the African National Congress leader and South African president Jacob Zuma in a rallying pose, with genitals exposed. It has caused controversy and been defaced. Images of the painting have gone viral on internet. In late May 2012, the South African Film and Publications Board classified the painting, as "16N" - not suitable for people under the age of 16 because it contains nudity. But in a country where one in four women is raped, Sonia Randhawa wonders just who the ban is supposed to protect.

South Africa: Pornography and the internet - justifiable protection or entrenching patriarchy?

on 28 Jul 2010
A draft Bill proposing a ban on sexual content on the internet and cellphones submitted to the South African Department of Home Affairs in May 2010 claims to have the best interests of women and children in mind. The Bill was submitted to the Department, which oversees the Film and Publications Board, by a non-profit organisation called Justice Alliance of South Africa (JASA).

South Africa: Privacy and domestic violence online and off

Esther Nasikye on 19 Jul 2010
While women's rights activists have been at the forefront of making the private crimes that occur at home - domestic violence, marital rape - public, new technologies are making the private public in ways that disenfranchise, alienate and violate women. Esther Nasikye and Sally-Jean Shackleton explore how ICTs, privacy and domestic violence in South Africa are showing up problems in both policy and practice.
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