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Cambodia: Blogger evangelists urge youngsters to share knowledge and experience

Since its inception in last year, blogging training aka Personal Information Technology Workshop has introduced basic use of IT skills to more than 2000 students from 10 Cambodia's universities.
personal information technology workshop
A personal information technology workshop in session. Image from Kalyan Keo‘s blog.

After a few months of preparation, the workshop of Personal Information Technology has come to the stage. The first one was held at International University (IU) on Aug 21 with some 50 participants and the second was at Pannasastra University of Cambodia (PUC) with more than 400 students…

In August 2006, Mean Lux, the blogger advocate who introduced the term Clog and Clogger for Cambodia blog and Cambodia blogger, launched a workshop named Personal Information Technology to provide training that include several sessions such as: how to use email, browse the Web, and more importantly how to create and maintain blog. Up till now, more than 2000 university students participated in the organized workshops.

In the largest and most vibrant Cambodian city, Phnom Penh a large percent of people speak English and have access to computer and the Net at Internet café. The workshop organizers and their sponsor are optimistic that they can play an active role in conducting the workshops for participants from as many higher education institutions as possible. The blogging workshop has been made possible with technical assistance from one of the Internet Service Providers, CityLink. Besides providing the cost of producing training materials, the ISP also make the Internet connection available at every practice session.

Mean Lux, his four other blogger evangelists (Kalyan, Virak, Chantra and younger Kalyan) are able to run the workshop with the recognition and appreciation of university lecturers who reserve conference hall for over one hundred attendees as well as some computer desktops that connect to the CityLink’s internet link. At Build Bright University in Siem Reap, about 200 student attendees took the course.

Clogger, a term coined in 2004 that derives from “Cambodia blogger,” is now widely known to 2370 university students in Cambodia. Months before blog became popular in the country that year, an early Cambodian blogger began a series of training in some provinces, offering IT enthusiasts an introduction to use personal publishing tool to post opinions and ideas.

Presenter Kalyan gave her personal impression after a workshop in Cambodia's largest university that attracted 400 student:

Yesterday our workshop on Personal Information Technology was held at PUC, and beyond our expectation there were about more than 400 participants including the Deans and the lecturers. I was very nervous…

Automated publishing services like Blogger and WordPress are free for users from a commercial point of view. Personal presence on the Web is no longer for elites, academics and geeks. New voices of these Internet story tellers, thoughts and opinions are common and has become central point for conversations spurred by opinionated readers that begins dialogs. The interaction may not be real- time, but still, the two-way communication is another effective way of critical idea exchanges on a particular issue. With all these, suddenly, there are many more voices reporting information. While this explosion is bound to cause some confusion, it also means many more ideas, viewpoints, and opinions are available to the public. The result can only be a better-informed world, one where no centralized entity can control what others can learn.

Clog refers to a heavy shoe traditionally made of wood when talking about attire. This term also means something that works against somebody as an obstacle or hindrance. Metaphorically, what Camobdia blog aka Clog is about is hardly understood.

When the Internet arrived in Cambodia in 1996-97, several years after China and about two decades after the Internet was invented, a few Cambodians, working alongside the expatriates from international aid agencies, for the first time, experienced electronic mail, then a new revolutionary way of communication. And about a decade later it is heartening to see more Cambodians embrace these new high-tech services, one of which is blogging.

7 comments

  • I see many students graduated in Cambodia on IT about more than 4,000 IT students graduated per year and about 200 IT job created per years. I would set up team to outsource programing, web, media and other to developed countries like US, Canada and Europe. My website soon would get all information about education, training, mentoring, fellowship, internship, source and careers for all stakeholders.

    I would like team to think about how to use ICT in, for and as business to create more jobs for disadvantage Cambodian

    Thanks
    Sithsophary

  • Tharum, excellent article, enjoyed reading.

    Keep up the good work!

  • […] Complete Story Social Bookmark Thisdel.icio.us Digg it Earthlink Furl iFeedReaders ma.gnolia Maple.nu Netvouz Netscape RawSugar reddit Scuttle Shadows Simpy Spurl StumbleUpon Wink Yahoo MyWeb « Yu yang na kor jum – Nop Bayarith […]

  • As a Cambodian American blogger, I am very proud to hear about the expansion of blogging in my native country.

    Awareness about blogging is essential to empowering the internet as a tool for the exchange of ideas and information and for building a stronger Cambodian community worldwide.

    To this end I salute you on your effort!

    Oudam

    http://www.oudam.com

  • Blog Training is much important for the current Cambodian society. I do hope that the personal website, blog, will increasingly play good roles in buidling Cambodia toward prosperity through news and innovations. The more we have information, the more we learn the society and make ourself grow. To have more information, knowing how to use internet, including blog, need understanding and interesting in information technology.

    Sokthy Im

  • Yeah, the blog is here for quiet some time, but i never realize that there are so many Cambodian bloggers. I hope this number growth, and to see more good ideas in Cambodian Blogs. Through blogging i believe that information exchange will flow easily among Cambodian World Wide.

  • […] for anyone with even the smallest knowledge of the Cambodian blogosphere. Long ago Tharum posted an article to Global Voices describing all the work Lux has done to spread blogging throughout Cambodia. Beth also interviewed Lux a couple years ago. Even Wired […]

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