Until now, CPJ’s Asia program has relied largely on email blasts to get the word out when we post something new on CPJ.org. Today we launched our Facebook and Twitter pages. Like us and follow us for an inside look at the Asia program and quick, timely updates on our alerts and blogs. We also hope you’ll take the opportunity to interact with each other on these social networks.
Incorporating social media into our digital presence is more than just a new communications tactic for the Asia program. Social media is something we deal with in our day-to-day advocacy. Increasingly, CPJ finds itself coming to the defense of micro-bloggers and plain citizens who use their mobile phones to post live dispatches. When the Chinese government blocked foreign media coverage of the March 2008 crackdown on ethnic rioting in Tibet, the world had to rely on foreign tourists, businesspeople, and exiled activists with clandestine contacts in the region to keep the outside world informed. The lesson for China was that small digital devices, particularly cell phones and cameras, are powerful tools for disseminating information and all but impossible to control.
CPJ.org is still blocked in China. We have to assume that access to www.facebook.com/cpjasia and www.twitter.com/cpjasia will be, too — if not today, then pretty quickly. And we still are on the target list of plenty of other governments around Asia. All the more reason for you to sign up.