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At the end of 2013, I came across a lot of ‘feminist round ups’ of the year that covered only achievements happening in the US and Europe. This frustrated me. So, in 2014, I started collecting tweets that I came across which linked to cool examples of fierce feminists from the majority world - and at the end of the year, I wrote this post - 24 fierce acts of feminism you probably didn’t hear about in 2014.

Last year, I was slightly less attentive to curating my Majority World feminism timeline, but I still managed to get some good ones. So, a little late, but here are my favourite examples of majority world feminism, from 2015.

Tweet with #mwfem if you come across more!

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Here are a few of the best talks I had the chance to see, and those that were recommended to me - mostly along the lines of technology and its use among under-represented communities.

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In 2014, I followed the #readwomen movement very strictly, and prioritised reading 50 books by women. In 2015, I loosened slightly my resolve of reading only women to reading mostly women, and I set myself the target of reading 25 books. I did that for a number of reasons; it meant I took my time over books more, and I wasn’t so bothered about reaching the target, though it turned out I did quite comfortably, as I read 37 books in the end.

I carried on trying to focus my reading habits around areas I was travelling to, and I also read a lot more non-fiction than in previous years, which I thoroughly enjoyed. I discovered a new sub-genre of books, too: microhistories, the “intensive historical investigation of a well defined smaller unit of research”, as Goodreads puts it. This year, issues around accessibility annoyed me more than in other years - I was trying to do a lot of reading as research for my podcast, but came up against paywalls a lot, unfortunately.

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Disclaimer: some of these are more confirmations of obvious-sounding things, and others, you might disagree with. I’m open to changing my mind on lots of these, but wanted to write them down at least for posterity.

I learned that…

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Recently, Julia set up this site, and I purchased the domain superrr.ninja for it to live at. Finding how to redirect it - as it was a project page rather than a user page - was a little counter-intuitive at times, so in case anyone else wonders in the future, here’s what I did:

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I recently spent a couple of weeks in South Africa. Beautiful landscapes aside, it was a fascinating trip, and I was lucky enough to come across some wonderful books to give me a tiny insight into the culture and history. Anyway, I love reading lists, so here’s a post of book-related recommendations about, or from, South Africa.

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Last Wednesday, on November 18th, the Bangladeshi government ordered blocking of social messaging apps until further notice - first blocking Whatsapp, Facebook, Messenger, and in a second directive later the same day shutting Line, Tango and Hangouts. The decision to block the sites came immediately after the Supreme Court upheld death penalty convictions against two former opposition leaders for their role in the 1971 Liberation War. Citing “security reasons” the government seems keen to try and restrict communications in a bid to dampen protests that might happen in response to the ruling - but in the meantime, there have been some interesting developments in use of social media in Bangladesh.

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Last week, a new book Data Journalism: Inside the global future was launched, to which I contributed a chapter.

The chapter I wrote was called ‘So you found a unicorn- what now?’ which takes a look at the cultural changes needed to successfully integrate technologists into a newsroom. Taking lessons from the fabulous Knight-Mozilla OpenNews fellowships, the brilliant work done by Code4South Africa, as well as my own experience working alongside journalists and technologists and anecdotes I’ve heard along the way, I argue that doing data journalism properly needs more than having tech skills - it’s a culture change, and a new way of collaborating within newsrooms.

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Last week, I was invited by IDEO to attend a small event on the theme “Design x Intimacy.” The theme intrigued me, as the intersection of design, technology and intimacy is one that I’ve not (consciously) put much thought into before.

The panel discussion that I was part of was recorded and will soon be online, I believe. It was a short discussion though, and in the lead up to it I benefited from a lot of smart people sharing their thoughts on the topic with me, so I wanted to share some of the discussions that we had.

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I’m a big ‘open’ advocate, and inclusivity and diversity are very important to me. Over the past few months, though, I’ve been wondering more about “closed” communities - and, I have to say that I’m seeing more and more benefits of them. Somewhat counter-intuitively, I’m finding more and more that closed communities are actually more inclusive than many open ones. Let me explain why.

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