Hivos International

"Digital Natives with a Cause?" newsletter Volume II

To mark the 10th anniversary of Wikipedia we decided on “connections” as the theme for the 2nd volume (containing three issues) of Links in the Chain. Connections are one of the defining features of a wiki website, as the interlinked nature of pages or entries allow for easy navigation and accessibility to networks of information from any point of entry. Connections are also a defining feature of the “Digital Natives with a Cause?” research project. There is the author–-reader connection that I am making with you right now, so often seen in the website that our servers were down on January 4th because we exceeded our upload limit. There is also the deeper albeit short-lived connection made by participants at the workshops. Part of the objective of this project is to create the spaces, both online and offline, and platforms for those of you, who under other circumstance would not be able to communicate, to establish a common dialogue – to make a connection.

With the third and last workshop of the project being two weeks away, a whole new batch of connections awaits you. There will be 20 new docks in which to anchor your own boat of experiences, and start the haul of goodies. You see, in the vast ocean through which we sail our own personal odysseys, the important moments are those of cargo exchanges, of serendipitous meeting in the middle of the ocean, or those orchestrated by the topography of life. Digital Natives is a bay - A bay where you all have anchored at least a part of your boat for the last couple of months. In two weeks, 20 new boats shall arrive from the Caribbean Sea. Word on the deck is that they bring cocoa beans and rum, and they move to the beat of Salsa and Merengue…

As the first edition of Links in the Chain in 2011, I encourage you all to reflect on the connections you are blessed to possess and the new ones that can arise in this coming year. Volume II issue I features Nonku, who talks about the serendipitous nature of the friends-of-a friend structure while on a trip in the old continent. Noopur introduces an innovative photo project, aimed at representing the digital (alter)native identity through its connections to gadgets. Lastly, Links in the Chain reaches out and connects with the greater community: Elonnai Hickok, researcher at CIS, writes a enlightening piece on the privacy of Facebook connections.

Best wishes in 2011

Samuel Tettner