On Monday and Tuesday I attended Internetdagarna. As usual inspiring days about challenges, possibilities, development and trends on the internet.
What happens when everyone gets internet?
A powerful question asked and explained by Keynote speaker Nnenna Nwakanma activist on the internet. She is convinced that the internet will benefit humanity if/and that all should have access. Right now this is a reality for only a third of the worlds population.
On Monday I listened to how they go about with the vision of getting Helsingborg city digitalised – Internet och staden. I have followed the process and work briefly via media and it has on and of been very debated and questioned.
The project is controversial in many ways which I have no time to dig deeper into right now right here. (I have asked Joakim Jardenberg, Head of internet in the City of Helsingborg to join us in ledarkanalen.se to explain more about their work in december). My short conclusion and view of what they are doing is that it´s not an easy job but that it´s very interesting. I do believe digitalization benefit the citizens and democracy through open data, possibilities for participation for all during dialog and transparency.
During the lectures a lot was said but what sticked with me the most was the hashtag they used and promoted #freewifihgb. Access to the internet for all citizens.
There is a dark side of the internet – the dark side of life
On tuesday I listened to lectures about communication and opinions in social media which was interesting in many ways. Opinioner och offenetligheter online.
The discussion was partly about threats and trolls and how we, the press, journalists from traditional media companies and individuals in the whole of society needs to adopt a more critical approach to what we read and share in social media. How we all need to take a second opinion and think twice. Who is the messenger, why and what are the writers intention?
There is a dark side of the internet. Access for everyone to participate through various social media platforms brings in just everyone. Not only the ones we like to hang with. There are haters and there are propaganda from forces that violates human rights globaly that we need to bee aware of.
Code is a global language
Not to ignore these facts and not to diminishing the importance of being aware of destructive forces. There are other forces to. Sometimes I actually think that they at this point in time are stronger, but needs to bee highlighted more in traditional media. I think that just because of destructive intentions from various people, political parties, organisations and states that uses propaganda and fear based communication in a narrow way, we need to highlight its contrast more. I think it would be a good idea to use the negative forces as a trampoline of what we do not want in to what we do want. These forces will always bee there. I think it´s something build into humanity (fear and trust). It might be that the key is to not stay to long with distruction but instead move over to the opposite; innovation and development. Through what we don´t want we come to the realization of what we do want, kind of approach.
Kathryn Parsons owned the stage as a key note speaker the second day with here smashing enthusiastic speech about code. Who does not want to learn the language of code after listening to her? You got to listen to her here Her speech evolves around the fact that we are right now living in a knowledge-revolution and that the digital era changes the way we do things and that code is a global language.
The power of the heart
In the midst of digitalization we are heading for something we have never seen before, experts are saying and rapports conclude. We have to dare to be brave and we have to be innovative. It will be a difficult and bumpy road, but mostly a thrilling journey if we set out a the vision of democracy and human rights, freedom of speech for more people all over the world. Make space for business to be social and valuebased, let global conversations to emerge and grow, and let an innovative mindset take place in all parts of society.
This, I feel is sophisticated integrated in and the sense of Internetdagarna
I take with me new inputs, thoughts and possibilities for collaboration. Standpoints, views and ideas from many different areas across society.
I must not forget to mention that the gift given to the key-note speakers were a clock, made by fourteen year old students in participation with Maker space. And finally. In the heart of the exhibition hall of Internetdagarna it was set up for everyone to make their own heart, with shining lights and everything.