For as long as I can remember, I’ve felt the duty of being that woman who sits in a meeting room in London, Geneva, New York, Berlin and Paris and talks about what digital rights mean for not just people of colour in Europe and North America, but across the rest of the world. Approximately 84% of the world’s poor live in South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa, and the digital divide remains steep but that’s only part of the story. These aren’t passive consumers of the web. They’re active prosumers. TikTok has been downloaded over 360 million times in South East Asia, a region of 658 million people. With social platforms, anyone with a phone can become a star, make money, connect with others, build a family of choice and acceptance, fall in love, and live a life they may not be allowed otherwise.
By Hera Hussain for Who Writes The Rules on August 23, 2021