Social Change And New Media In Africa

Cathal Gilbert | International Business Times | November 2, 2012

Cathal Gilbert looks at technologies being used by activists and discovers that many of most innovative ideas have come out of Africa.

Almost by stealth, the internet, new technologies and social media have become an indispensable part our daily lives. For human rights and democracy activists around the globe, advances in technology and communications are also changing the way they go about fighting for freedom and justice.

Each year, dozens of new platforms and programs are released that are designed to harness the power of new technologies to make human rights work more effective. As mobile penetration skyrockets in Africa, individuals and groups promoting democracy are looking to capitalise on an opportunity for low cost communication with communities that were previously isolated.

FrontlineSMS is a tool that helps to remove barriers to communication by providing an open source and easy-to-use software program for managing two-way SMS communication. All you need to use FrontlineSMS is a computer and a mobile phone and the software can be downloaded in a few minutes. FrontlineSMS does the rest by making possible instantaneous two-way mobile communication on a large scale...