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Submit your idea for improving access to media

With one week to go until the entry deadline for Citizen Media: A Global Innovation Competition, run by Ashoka Changemakers with support from Google, we wanted to share some of the activity that this competition has generated. We think it may inspire a few more of you to enter your ideas for improving the access to and quality of information for people around the globe.

Ashoka selected and announced two early entry prize winners whose innovations are representative of the type of ideas we’re excited to see come out of this competition:
  • The Viewspaper - An online platform engaging thousands of young people in India and the United Kingdom. Shiv Dravid, Viewspapers’s founder, writes: "The Viewspaper provides a web platform, which uses open source technology and online marketing to crowdsource the views of young people from around the world."
  • FreedomBox - A platform to provide private, anonymous, and secure interpersonal communication. According to founder James Vasile, it will "put in people's own hands and under their own control encrypted voice and text communication, anonymous publishing, social networking, media sharing, and (micro)blogging."
Ashoka also asked journalists and practitioners to develop content on the nature and future of information citizenship. Here are some of these.
  • Citizen Media: Perspectives from Thought-Leaders - Five videos from thought-leaders in citizen media, including talks from Ethan Zuckerman (co-founder of Global Voices), Alisa Miller (CEO of Public Radio International), and Wadah Khanfar (Director General of Al Jazeera).
  • "Media is complicated." Or not. - A review of some of the conversations and trends from the MIT | Knight Civic Media Conference.
  • Arab Spring -- and the Long Winter Ahead - A look at the role of citizen media in the Arab Spring, tensions between technology and privacy, and conversations with thought-leaders in the field.
To date, this competition has generated incredible activity and discussion on Citizen Media and has gotten people involved from around the globe. It has received submissions from India, the United States, Pakistan, Egypt, the UK, and Brazil as well as other countries. If you want to discuss issues related to Citizen Media you can join the Twitter chat that Ashoka Changemakers is hosting on Monday, September 12, 3 -5 pm EST.

There’s still time to submit your idea to have the opportunity to win a prize of $5,000 and be considered for an Ashoka Fellowship (which includes a three-year living stipend, and access to a global network of changemakers).

We're excited to support this program and encourage you to enter the competition.

Mimi Kravetz, Team

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