blogging6. The World Blogging Forum - session 2 - afternoon

The afternoon session is about Online journalism.

14.41 Introduction by Petrisor Obae (Pagina de media).

14.42 Onnik Krikorian speaks about the two bloggers from Azerbaijan who have just been sentenced to two years, and two and a half years in prison respectively, and about the subject of censorship. He feels that the draft declaration concerning their case is not strong enough.

14.47 David Sasaki from the USA speaks about the 185 bloggers under arrest around the world (search Threatened Voices), then speaks of responsibility of bloggers. He thinks that everything we publish on blogs and social medias is because of self-interest. He also believes that, yesterday, Romanian bloggers lost a wonderful occasion to ask president Basescu about sensitive issues, knowing that presidential elections are just around the corner. Well, this brings us again to the issue of the participation of Romanian bloggers at this event.

15.09 Jeff Jedras speaks about credibility and the need for standards in blogging.

15.29 Jakub Gornicki addresses social media and its development in Poland. His most recent project is a live video talk-show.

15.39 Dvorit Shargal speaks about her blogging experience and her blog, Velvet Underground. She believes the success of her blog is a result of two reasons: the initial anonymity of the blog and the fact that journalists like to get feedback.

15.53 Erkan Saka from Turkey addresses the issue of online journalism in Turkey: Youtube is banned in the country (as are a good number of sites and blogs), and freedom of online expression can be improved. Erkan Saka is, almost, the only blogger from Turkey speaking about Turkish political issues in English.


The second part of the afternoon session concerns The influence of blogs upon civil society. It is a short session, taking merely an hour.

Jakub Gornicki brings up a Polish case of assistance for a girl in need for an expensive surgery. In order to help, a match between Polish bloggers and artists, with fund-raising purposes, was organized. She got to the surgery (70% of the funds raised via online activism) and is healed.

Helge Fahrnberger speaks about the activism of Austrian students and their lack of satisfaction concerning the Bologna process. He mentions their site www.unsereuni.at and the model of organization of the students. He also raised the question of difference between online and real support (which is much lower, unfortunately), and I think this is an important issue.

Next, Giovanni Rugerri describes his activity in support of Father Zosim Oancea and the museum of icons on glass organized in Sibiel, containing 600 icons. Go see the website of the museum, it is a must-see and I added it on my blogroll. I really enjoyed this presentation, the more for the fact that Giovanni Rugerri addressed his speech in Romanian.

Also, presentations of Onnik Krikorian (he mentions a conference in Yerevan about social media and social change, to be held in april 2010) and Ramon Stopellenburg. The internet connection and the power source felled down, which is the first and the only bad thing of the event. I am happy that I don't depend on the wi-fi here, but on my own mobile connection.

World Blogging Constitution & Declaration of support for detained bloggers all over the world

In the very end of the Forum, a debate on the drafts of the documents proposed by the organizers. The space created for their popularization and editing is here, and anyone can come with suggestions and ideas, so my invitation for you is to go there and have you say. Because this is what, in my opinion, would determine the success of the Forum: if bloggers will consider these documents seriously and make them count.

On a personal key, I want to apologize for getting low with the live blogging in the afternoon session, as I became more and more tired after two days of such high intensity. My congratulations and reconnaissance to the organizers, for the possibility granted - to take part directly to this event. The organization was above my highest expectations, so a big thank you goes to ASLS and Miss Mihaela Draghici personally.

There are still some very interesting things I have to write about regarding my participation to this Forum, so stay close for my conclusions.

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