28 February 2011

Club-footed Social Media Poverty Poster Child

So this is a little intriguing: News.com.au has an article about Darren Rowse, described as ‘one of Australia’s biggest bloggers’, and his trip to Tanzania to ‘to test the idea that social media can be used for good.’

I think that one of the cool things about the internet is that you don’t actually need to go anywhere to check things out. Darren surely must have access to google and online news as well, so he might have heard the odd story or five about an entire Twitter and Facebook-supported revolution in Tunisia and Egypt. Maybe he could have sat down and googled around Africa/East Africa a bit and checked out what people here are up to in social media and the internet in general?

Because then we might not have ended up with the usual little poverty poster child for his initiative. This time, it’s not flies in the eyes and a distended belly:

‘Rowse said one of his main goals was to let people from Tanzania tell their own stories. "A little boy with a club foot or a cleft pallet (will) be able to tell his story in a way he may not have been able to do," he said.’

I think he meant cleft palate, but aside from that, I hope he also asks a business woman in her shiny big four-wheel drive to ‘tell her own story’.

‘We'll be blogging on the road, really, wherever we can find internet access, tweeting and creating videos.’ Just bring a smart phone and you’re good to go wherever there’s network coverage. That's how we do it here. The whole mobile thing, you know. Look it up. It's on google.

Yeah yeah, good intentions. I know.

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