Since we’re participating this year in One Web Day (which takes place on Monday September 22nd), I thought I should spend a little bit of time discussing the project and its aims.
One Web Day was started in 2006 by Susan Crawford, a professor of law specializing in Internet issues at the University of Michigan. Using Earth Day as her inspiration, she decided that this now-vital part of the infrastructure of our daily lives needed an event focused on both supporting and celebrating it as well as advocating for its protection.
Crawford explains, “Peoples’ lives now are as dependent on the Internet as they are on the basics like roads, energy supplies and running water. We can no longer take that for granted and we must advocate for the Internet politically, and support its vitality personally.”
On the day itself, there will be both online and offline events taking place all over the world, with large events taking place in New York, Washington, San Francisco, Chicago and Cleveland, as well as in various international cities. A number of Internet superstars are supporting the event, including Lawrence Lessig (Creative Commons), John Perry Barlow (EFF), Craig Newmark (Craigslist), Jimmy Wales (Wikipedia), Joichi Ito, Doc Searls and David Weinberger.
This year’s theme is participatory democracy, not surprising considering it’s an election year in the U.S. In my next blog entry, I’m going to focus on some Canadians who are using the internet to encourage participation in our political process, to spread good deeds, to enable fundraising for charities and to extend access to technology to children of lower-income families.
How can you participate? Check out the ideas on the One Web Day site. If you plan on doing something in your city or on your site, we’d love to hear about it. Post a comment below.