WeDpro, in partnership with the Foundation for Media Alternatives and supported by Take Back the Tech, Association for Progressive Communications, organized a one-day workshop called Kwento Ko, I-Blog Ko? on 01 December 2011 held at Conspiracy Garden Cafe, 59 Visayas Ave., Quezon City. The objective of the workshop was to enhance women’s ability to use social networking for their advocacies and personal needs.
Participants included: Imelda Morales, tai-chi instructor, co-founder of Freelance Writers of the Philippines; Flor Caagusan, freelance editor and writer (Katipunan ng Kababaihan para sa Kalayaan); Stephanie Claros, Women’s Day Off, Cebu/ Partido ng Manggagawa (PM) Cebu; Kristine Dayauon, Gabriela; Jona Cham-Lago, Women in Bliss Writers’ Collective; Maricelly Malave, international student and volunteer, WeDpro; Rea Martinez, music student at the University of the Philippines and volunteer at WeDpro; Len Mesina, programme officer (FMA); Amparo Miciano, officer of the Pambansang Kalipunan ng Kababaihan sa Kanayunan (PKKK); Mai Santos, high school student and budding writer; Atty. Cristina Sevilla, child rights advocate and litigator; Mary Gyknell Tangente, GALANG, a lesbian rights group; Fanny Velasquez, freelance website development provider; and, Desiree Ventura, student at AMA-Olongapo Campus and member of Maskara, a community-based theatre group in Olongapo City.
Two male observers, Rolando Santos and Atty. Jing Gaddi, members of the WeDpro Collective, also attended.
Resource persons were online security specialist Cheekay Cinco who is currently a consultant for EngageMedia, an international non-profit media, technology and culture organization (http://www.engagemedia.org/about-us); Ava Vivian Gonzalez, writer-editor and training facilitator and a Ph.D student; Lalaine Viado, currently an independent consultant and blogger and formerly with APC; and Aida F. Santos-Maranan. Cinco, Gonzalez, Santos-Maranan and Viado are all members of the WeDpro Collective.
Topics covered included choosing blogging themes; developing a blog story, and different types of blogging and their purpose; a step-by-step process on getting started on your own blog, creating blogsites; language; social responsibility of bloggers (how women’s lives have been affected by EVAW; “whether or not they know who’s reading their work, they must take into consideration how their blogs can affect others.”); security issues, among others.
Cinco and Viado emphasized that despite the public nature of blogging, there is a need to secure personal information and protect privacy online. The participants were given tips on how to avoid getting spam, and protect their website accounts from hackers. Cinco also said that, “[T]he most secure password is the password you don’t remember”, and showed how to create one, an activity that elicited fun and baffling effect on the participants. She explained that hackers go for the popular sites because the more people register on a site, the more emails the hackers can get, and the famous group of hackers is called “Anonymous”.
The participants were not expected to create blog sites at the end of the workshop — although some has already blogsites — the participants expressed a deeper knowledge on the use of ICTs, whether for personal or commercial uses. The following points of interest were raised:
- The relevance of website registrations to hacking vulnerability
- How to create a good sharing network and spread the contents of your site (on the concept of followers online)
- When and how to reveal/conceal your identity
- What to and not to put in your online profiles
- Tags and online content visibility
There is an obvious need to do more workshops on blogging and internet security workshops and trainings to reach others.