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Thanks to the many who have proposed changes and edits, here is the latest version of our Manifesto. Please suggest any further changes on the Wiki, but we hope that we can finalize it by Monday at the latest.

We believe in free speech, both in protecting the right to speak and extending access to the tools of speech. We define speech broadly to include many media that facilitate expression.

The broadest right of free speech has always extended primarily to those who owned technology for publishing and distribution, beginning with the printing press. It is now possible for anyone to publish, broadcast and have access to a distribution channel via the Internet. It is our goal that everyone who wants to speak can be heard.

We believe in the power of direct connection and the freedom to connect. The bond between individuals from different worlds is personal, political and powerful.

We seek to create bridges that cross the gulfs that have traditionally divided us. When we cross these gulfs, we understand each other more fully, work together more effectively, and act more powerfully. With these bridges, we can do together what we could only dream of doing alone.

Direct connection is its own reward. However, in a world full of challenges, it is also the best path to building a future that is freer, fairer, more sustainable and more prosperous.

While we're all committed to our own work as individuals, we also recognize our common interest and goals. We each speak for ourselves, but we're all in this together. We pledge to respect, listen to, assist, and learn from one other. We are Global Voices.


  • oso

    I completely agree with the covenant idea. We should give Joi something tangible to present at all the gatherings he’ll soon be attending (how’s he do it?), but I think it should only serve as a guiding primer to create something much more impactful.

    Joi and I have had an exchange on PressThink about a transnational culture developing in the blogosphere. He says:

    I’ve been to Davos… I think 4 times, and I think global bloggers are just as transcultural as people who hang out at Davos. The biggest difference is that we hang out every day, whereas Davos is once a year. I think that this has the potential to make our bonds stronger.

    In my opinion, the actual Global Voices Manifesto should set out to define the cooperative and open values of our transnational, transpartisan culture.

    And it shouldn’t just be drafted by a bunch of (mostly American) A-list bloggers who can afford to fly out to Cambridge. Each of us needs to be involved in an outreach campaign to include the most thoughtful bloggers around the globe in the drafting of the finalized manifesto.

    Regarding Boris’ point, I think the difference is that this is a blogger’s manifesto. We are setting out to define our common, transnational values despite our religious, political, cultural, and linguistic differences. I also think that unlike the wordy Declaration of Human Rights in Cyberspace we want to make this eloquently simple and easy to translate in every language.

  • oso

    I have added a section to the wiki called Global Voices Outreach. If you think this is a good idea, please add bloggers from around the world whom you think would make good candidates. If you don’t, please feel free to delete the section.

  • sj

    oso, I like the outreach idea very much. And I agree that we shouldn’t finalize such a manifesto until we have translated the mission and purpose into fifteen languages and gotten feedback from key bloggers and pundits in 40 or 50 countries.

    So perhaps starting with a draft covenant, and translating that draft as an explanation of the motivation for Global Voices, is a good way to bootstrap a manifesto.

    I’d like to branch off a version of the current “manifesto” as a “Global Voices Covenant 0.1” in order to have something to start translating.

    = sj =

  • what i want for christmas

    i’m compiling a list of things i’d like to have, not only to actually write down the things i say “wow i wish i had that,” but also to give some ideas for the people that keep asking me what i want for christmas. so if anyone …

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