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The Role of Social Media in Ending Violence Against Women

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Published on Dec 4, 2012

Social media offers unprecedented opportunities to raise awareness around violence against women and girls, to help users stay safe, and to inspire people to engage in social activism. At the same time, it may pose challenges to journalists by blurring the line between journalism and activism. The Global Women's Institute recently hosted a panel, hosted by SMPA director Frank Sesno, on the role of social media and media in preventing violence against women.

Liriel Higa (9:27) leads Half the Sky Movement's social media initiative to inspire, educate and activate fans worldwide. Whether you got hooked on Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn's message through their book, Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide, the PBS documentary series of the same name, the web or your mobile device, she wants to help you use social media to connect with and join the inspiring individuals and communities who are driving a movement. A Princeton University graduate with a degree from the Woodrow Wilson School, Liriel previously was a reporter at Congressional Quarterly in Washington, D.C., and tweets as @iDiplomacy.

Shawna Potter (24:35) is the only child of a single mother, therefore, a feminist. She has been living in Baltimore since 2002 and began her local Hollaback! chapter in 2011. A current member of the Transgender Response Team and head organizer of 2011′s Baltimore Slutwalk, Shawna is not satisfied waiting for the world to change. She currently screams for War on Women, is ordained to perform wedding ceremonies and runs Big Crunch Amp & Guitar Repair with her partner in life and crime. A winner of this year's Worldwide Visionaries Award, she is committed to using both Hollaback! Baltimore and War on Women as platforms to raise awareness about street harassment and other symptoms of gender-inequality.

Nancy Schwartzman (38:08) is a filmmaker, media strategist, and catalyst for social change who believes storytelling and technology can create safer communities for women and girls. Named one of the "10 Filmmakers to Watch in 2011" by Independent Magazine, Nancy Schwartzman is the director of the award-winning film "The Line," a documentary that examines rape culture and the line of consent, and "xoxosms" a love story that explores how technology can create digital intimacy.

Nancy is the Founder of The Line Campaign, a non-profit dedicated to empowering young
leaders to end sexual violence. With the creation of Circle of 6 iPhone and Android app, Nancy's team won the highly competitive White House Apps against Abuse Technology Challenge. Widely touted by the media and downloaded by over 50,000 users, Circle of 6 helps friends stay close and connected to prevent violence before it happens. An early adopter of cutting edge media tools for women's safety and dynamic storytelling, Nancy is a sought-after speaker and consultant working with college campuses, military populations, independent filmmakers, and international organizations and more. She launched "The Invisible War" social justice campaign at Sundance, and is currently working with "Girl Model" to push for transparency and equity from the modeling industry.

Caroline D'Angelo (59:15) is the Pulitzer Center's social media editor. Before joining the Pulitzer Center, she worked as a staff writer and editor for the Initiative for Global Environmental Leadership at the Wharton School and Oikos International. While at University of Pennsylvania, she obtained a master's degree in environmental studies, focusing on international environmental policy, particularly in water and sanitation. She won the Society of Women Environmental Professionals' graduate scholarship and the Dean's Scholar Award, in addition to several grants for international research and reporting projects. After a research trip to Sri Lanka and India, she co-founded wH2O: The Journal of Gender & Water, the first journal on global water and women's issues, for which she serves as editor-in-chief. An avid social media user, Caroline has led reporting projects and taught social media, writing and multimedia content production to university students from around the world. Her freelance work has been published in various magazines and blogs around the web. She graduated with her B.A. from the University of Virginia.

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    • Casino Versus Japan
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    • Go Hawaii
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    • [Merlin] SC Distribution (on behalf of Wobblyhead); ASCAP

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