“The secret of happiness is freedom. The secret of freedom is courage.” – Thucydides
The Winners announced!
The results of the Breaking Borders award were announced in Santiago, Chile during the closing session of the first day of the Global Voices Citizen Media Summit.
Malou Mangahas of the Philippines, Archbishop John Baptist Odama of Uganda and Brenda Burrell of Zimbabwe accepted the Breaking Borders award on behalf of their organisations.
From Google and Global Voices, and from Thomson Reuters and our award jury, we’d like to congratulate our winners for their initiative, creativity and achievements., for citizen benefit.
The winners are:
Bosco – Uganda
In April 2007, BOSCO was launched as a solar powered, long-range wireless computer network covering locations in former Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camps across Gulu and Amuru districts in northern Uganda. Low power PCs and VoIP phones were installed in schools, health centers and parish offices, bringing Internet, phone and Intranet connectivity to remote areas. BOSCO’s long-term vision is to provide innovative information and communication technology (ICT) solutions to foster social and economic development and peace building in rural communities of northern Uganda using a collaborative, web-based approach. Currently, BOSCO focuses on developing and facilitating Web 2.0 training, online digital ethnography and collaborative online communication mediums between Internet sites. BOSCO currently works in partnership with Inveneo, Horizont3000, War Child Holland, the Gulu Archdiocese and UNICEF.
The Philippines Center for Investigative Journalism
An independent, not-for-profit media agency, the PCIJ was founded by nine Filipino journalists in 1989 — with borrowed office space, an old-DOS-based computer, a second-hand electric typewriter, and office furniture bought from a thrift shop — to promote the values of investigative reporting in fostering good governance, freedom of expression, and the people’s right to know. In 20 years, the PCIJ has produced 500 investigative reports, two dozen books on journalism and governance, five-full-length films and dozens of video documentaries. It has conducted a hundred training seminars for journalists in the Philippines and Southeast Asia, and won over 120 national and international awards. The PCIJ maintains a multimedia website; an institutional blog; a database site on politics and governance, i-site.ph; and institutional accounts on Twitter and YouTube.
In the Advocacy Category:
An online community for Zimbabwean activists, Kubatana uses the Internet, email, SMS, blogs and print materials to disseminate information to the general public. An online library of over 16 000 human rights and civic reports together with a directory listing over 240 NGOs makes Kubatana a valuable resource for information on Zimbabwe. And that’s not all! Kubatana has developed Freedom Fone, innovative telephony software, which takes the mobile phone and marries it with audio voice menus and SMS, for citizen benefit.
Google and Global Voices announced the winners at an awards ceremony held during the Global Voices Summit in Santiago, Chile May 6-7.
The Breaking Borders Award
The Breaking Borders Award is a new prize created by Google and Global Voices and supported by Thomson Reuters to honor outstanding web projects initiated by individuals or groups that demonstrate courage, energy and resourcefulness in using the Internet to promote freedom of expression. The prize will honor work in three categories: tools that promote freedom of expression, outstanding work on policy and activism or journalism that contributed an important voice or argument – each awarded with USD $10,000.
Due to the great interest the Breaking Borders Award has received, we have extended the deadline for the awards. A committee of experts will analyze and announce winners of the prize together with Global Voices at the Global Voices Citizen Media Summit 2010 in Santiago, Chile.
Visit the Summit website for background information on the goals of the meeting, the program of events and registration details.
Additional information about the award and the official nomination form are located in the menu bar alongside this page
Freedom of Expression Google YouTube-Channel
In tandem with the Breaking Borders Event & Award, Google has announced the launch of a YouTube Channel dedicated to promote and discuss freedom of expression on the internet. Internet users from around the world are invited to upload their videos onto this channel and share stories about how the internet has changed the way we express ourselves.
The History of Breaking Borders Initiative
Google commemorated the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall with the event, Breaking Borders, celebrating how the efforts for freedom and political change continue, with the Internet as its ubiquitous ally. At the event, speakers representing Google, Reporters Without Borders, Global Voices and Thomson Reuters (among others) discussed the Internet’s pivotal role in advancing participatory democracy around the globe.
Despite this progress, many continue to suffer political and social scrutiny for the uninhibited expression of their opinions. Dissidents, journalists and bloggers remain under severe pressure in the online and offline worlds; their voices all too often silenced and even punished. The 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall was a timely reminder that democracy can only be preserved through our constant efforts, each of us participating actively to guarantee the right to free expression and human liberty both at a nation and global level.
With this in mind, Google and Global Voices have partnered to create the “Breaking Borders Award” and honor those around the world who are fighting for free expression online. The award, totaling $30,000, will honor and support outstanding web projects, initiated by individuals or groups, that demonstrate courage, energy and resourcefulness in using the Internet to promote freedom of expression.