A week from the opening of the Sixth World Social Forum, the Venezuelan blogosphere is not paying much attention to the event.
Pro-government Aporrea blog is the only weblog publishing news about the WSF everyday. Most of such entries are quotations from the government news agency ABN. Meanwhile, the anarchist blog, Colectivo La Libertad is covering news about the Alternative Social Forum, that will be hosted by anarchist collectives in Venezuela the very same week of the WSF. Reste@dos is publishing notes about both the WSF and the Alternative Forum agendas.
The feeling among Venezuelan bloggers is that sixth WSF may not be authentically representative of the Porto Alegre spirit since military officers and presidential bodyguards are expected to take control of all the Forum facilities. Thus, the humble Alternative gathering is seen as more suitable for social-minded people to share ideas without “pledging fidelity” to the Venezuelan president.
The only activity related to the WSF that is catching the attention of Venezuelan bloggers is the open invite to be part of a naked crowd standing to be photographed by Spencer Tunick. At least twelve Venezuelan bloggers swear they will be there.
I’m sorry that you saw the same problems that I did. You know… I like to think I am open, and willing to participate in a lot of things. I don’t mind listening to the perspectives of others – even if I disagree with them. It’s OK to disagree. Eventually, it has to happen; without disagreement there can be no progress (paraphrasing Gandhi).
When I leave a list, I view it as an ‘unhealthy relationship’. When you free yourself of an unhealthy relationship, you feel good deep down inside… and if you continue the unhealthy relationship, you don’t. Why not feel good? :-)
On the flip side, NGOs really don’t get it in the region. Really. They actually wonder why they don’t get participation from people, why people won’t do things for them… and yet, they don’t (1) allow people to participate, or (2) pay them for things which they themselves are getting paid for. I’ve got a few horror stories collected, but it’s in poor taste to make them public – at least without context.
Anyways… I’ll be keeping tabs on the World Social Forum. I might even blog about it, though if I have nothing to add I will not. :-)
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