KENYA: World Social Forum
Indymedia radio support for WSF 2007 from Kenya18 Jan 2007 15:34 GMT
The World Social Forum is an annual gathering of participants in social movements for global justice, timed to coincide with the World_Economic_Forum.
The World Economic Forum is a meeting of business and political leaders in Davos, Switzerland, which is converted into a military security zone during the meeting, making demonstrations and coverage by Independent Media nearly impossible. Participants at the World Economic Forum are overwhelming European or American and male; non-governmental organizations such as Friends of the Earth and Public Citizen have been excluded from meetings after raising concerns, and Greenpeace withdrew after finding the group uncooperative on issues such as climate change.
The World Social Forum is held in the southern hemisphere each year and largely made up of participants in social movements in response to the poverty, inequality, war, sexism, and state suppression generated by policies pushed by participants of the World Economic Forum, the World Trade Organization, and other forces of global capital.
Rallying around the call of "Another World Is Possible," the World Social Forum has placed social justice, gender equality, peace, and defense of the environment on the agenda of the world’s peoples. World Social Forums have collectively expanded the democratic spaces of those seeking concrete, progressive alternatives to imperialist globalization.
Regional Social Forums meet throughout the year to support this work. Everyone is invited to the US Social Forum, June 27 through July 1, 2007 in Atlanta Georgia and the Midwest Social Forum. Our local School for Designing a Society will be traveling to the US Social Forum this year.
There have also been various other local Social Forums, European level, national level
Historically Indymedia has had a close relationship with the World Social Forum (WSF), as the Indymedia network of volunteer-run Independent Media Centers grew out of the same movement against neo-liberalism and for global justice that led to the WSF. The Indymedia network now includes over 170 Independent Media Centers on every continent but Antarctica. The Indymedia network has helped spread the world from the WSF from 2002 onwards, ensuring that an Independent Media Center is available at each WSF to allow diverse voices from the Forum to be heard.
This World Social Forum IMC will be focused on not only on reporting on the WSF, but on skill-sharing and solidarity between Indymedia and global justice activists. There will be workshops on web distribution of stories, audio production, radio station building, print publishing, silk screening, and consensus based decision-making. Another goal is to consolidate the energy of local activists in Kenya to resume and energize the formation of a permanent IMC in Kenya.
"Independent Media in Africa continues to be a challenge. While large parts of the populations in Africa still do not have access to democratic and independent media, they are lacking specifically access to more interactive media like the internet that enable not only to receive news but also to produce news globally. Thats why local, private and pirate radio stations or a free radio action and even small-scale newspapers form a strong force of independent media in many African countries. Devoted media activists maintain them. The WSF gives a great opportunity to continue networking between these local activists as much as discuss chances and possibilities to increase the use of the internet for networking and eventually producing more African news for within and beyond Africa," says Fabian, one of the organizers on the ground in Narobi. And so, trying to create free software alternatives of producing low-band web radio .
Indymedia organizers are working to bring delegates from Kenya, Mauritius, Cameroon, South Africa, Uganda, Nigeria and Mali to the World Social Forum Indymedia Convergence.
Watch www.ucimc.org and Kenya Indymedia as the stories unfold.