Organization and coordination for political activism has increasingly moved in the direction of that omnipresent information superhighway, the internet. With information sharing, networking and planning now easier than ever before there has been a explosion of global political activism taking place online at various hubs around the globe, one of the foremost among these sites is Avaaz, which has been described by the well known political news outlet, The Guardian, as one of the largest and most potent activist networks currently operating across the web.
Avaaz, named after a very old Persian word which, roughly translated means “musical voice,” is a online political action and activism platform designed around three key concepts, democratic, global community building, achieving just political reform and lastly and perhaps most uniquely, user control. Avaaz is singular among political activism websites due to the fact that every political campaign they undertake is created by the users (members) of the site themselves, rather than a small board room group of leaders which is fitting as the site describes itself as being a “web movement” dedicated to bringing political power back to “the people,” not just nation or state-wide, but globally.
The website was created in January of 2007 by the well known political activist and web guru, Ricken Patel who the Huffington Post once described as one of the foremost new game changers in online activism. To this day Mr. Patel remains the leader of the organization along with his board of advisers. In his tenue are president of the organization Patel has not accepted one penny from any think tanks, foundations or corporations instead relies upon his dedicated and highly active user-base of well over 45 million members across the world.
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