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SMS Uprising: Mobile Activism in Africa Paperback – January 1, 2010

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SMS Uprising: Mobile Activism in Africa + The Technology of Nonviolence: Social Media and Violence Prevention
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 174 pages
  • Publisher: Pambazuka Press; 1st edition (January 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1906387354
  • ISBN-13: 978-1906387358
  • Product Dimensions: 0.4 x 5.2 x 7.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,664,232 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"Combines theoretical groundwork and practical case studies useful to everyone interested in the use of mobile technology for activism and development."  —DigiActive

About the Author

Sokari Ekine is a Nigerian activist with a background in technology, education, and human rights. She has worked in adult education and for several online publications, including Pambazuka News. She is the author of the blog Black Looks.

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Nicholas Jackson on April 12, 2010
Format: Paperback
This book is an invaluable resource for learning about SMS in Africa, but it has broader value for understanding the challenges and opportunities of social networking on all Internet platforms. The authors, pre-eminent in the field of Internet activism in Africa, both cover general issues and provide detailed case studies of digital information gathering and activism in Kenya, DR Congo, KwaZulu Natal, Uganda and Zimbabwe among others. The digital divide is addressed but so also is the exponential growth of mobile technologies and the innovative adaptation of old and new technologies to local circumstances. An often overlooked feature of technological adaptation in Africa is the relentless creativity of people in Africa as they attempt to keep automobiles, phones, computers and other items operational far beyond the warranty dates. SMS Uprising applies this well to communications technologies. Authors also note both the positive and negative uses of such technologies, including distribution of both non-violent and violent speech as well as the ability to track movements for good and bad purposes.

I was surprised at the positive presentation in the book of market liberalization in the context of telecommunications. It seems that there was a clear support for privatized networks rather than government intervention. This position deserves broader integration into debates about neoliberal marketplaces, efficiency, innovation and human welfare.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Robert David STEELE Vivas HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWER on February 20, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book will be rated 6 Stars and Beyond at Phi Beta Iota, the Public Intelligence Blog, where we can do things Amazon refuses to implement here, such as sort useful non-fiction into 98 categories, many of the categories focused on stabilization & reconstruction, pushing back against predatory immoral capitalism, and so on.

When the book was first brought to my attention it was with concern over the price. The price is fair. Indeed, the content in this book is so valuable that I would pay $45 without a second thought. I am especially pleased that the African publishers have been so very professional and assured "Look Inside the Book"--please do click on the book cover above to read the table of contents and other materials.

This is the first collection I have seen on this topic, and although I have been following cell phone and SMS activism every since I and 23 others created the Earth Intelligence Network and put forth the need for a campaign to give the five billion poor free cell phones and educate them "one cell call at a time," other than UNICEF and Rapid SMS I was not really conscious of bottom-up initiatives and especially so those in Africa where the greatest benefits are to be found.

I strongly recommend this book as a gift for ANYONE. This is potentially a game-changing book, and since I know the depth of ignorance among government policy makers, corporate chief executives, and larger non-governmental and internaitonal organization officials, I can say with assurance that 99% of them simply do not have a clue, and this one little precious book that gives me goose-bumps as I type this, could change the world by providing "higher education" to leaders who might then do more to further the brilliant first steps documented in this book.
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