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Mobile activism: three billion mobile phones and counting

Page history last edited by Rosemary 13 years, 4 months ago

Mobile activism: 3 billion mobile phones..and counting

Mobile phones are proliferating at astounding rates across socio-economic and cultural boundaries, revolutionizing the way we organize ourselves and do business. With close to 3 billion mobile phones expected at the end of 2007, they are found in every corner of the world, used by people to communicate with each other, and access and deliver information and services.

These trends are highly promising for NGOs and civil society organizations that can now engage people on issues that matter most through always-on, always-on-hand devices. Democracy organizations have used mobile phones to swing elections through innovative get-out-the-vote activities, ensured impartial voting through poll monitoring via SMS, developed ground-breaking new information services with vital civic or health information, documented abuses of political prisoners, and lobbied legislators to pass environmental laws.

Mobile phones have been used to mobilize hundreds of thousands of peaceful demonstrators in countries across the world with text messages and brilliant political ringtones. They are being used in environmental campaigns in Argentina, to advocate for an independent judiciary in India, for support of emigrant and migrant communities in the Philippines, and for disease detection and prevention in Rwanda. Mobile phone services provide sexual health information in the UK, Australia, and the United States, and deliver AIDS drugs and services in South Africa.  Mobiles are used to track financial transaction in microfinance groups in India, and are used to document and monitor fair trade practices in Mexico.  

MobileActive.org is a global network of people (and their tools, projects, and resources) focused on the use of mobile phones in civil society, which aims to expand access to knowledge, ideas and experience about the use of mobile technology; reduce learning costs for civil society organizations; accelerate the use of effective tactics in campaigns; and provide a comprehensive platform for data on mobile projects and mobile use around the world.

This story was adapted from information on the website of MobileActive.


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