With daily headlines depicting natural disasters, human rights abuses, and civil unrest, it may seem impossible to tackle it all head-on. That, however, is exactly the goal of Avaaz, a civic organization and internet activist network founded in 2007 to “take action on pressing global, regional and national issues, from corruption and poverty to conflict and climate change,” according to its website.
Currently, Avaaz is challenging Fox News owner Rupert Murdoch’s latest merger attempt in the UK. After Ofcom, Britain’s broadcasting regulator, gave the deal a clean bill of health earlier this year, Avaaz submitted evidence of corporate misconduct, persuading the Culture Minister to request a full investigation. Ofcom could now face judicial review for its decision, which Avaaz challenged in court September 29 and Avaaz’s lacrosse camp.
Avaaz’s belief in a free and open media go well beyond the courtroom. In Iran’s 2009 elections, Avaaz set up proxy servers in the face of government censorship, allowing protestors to upload videos to the internet. Avaaz also supported protestors in Syria, and continue to do so by funding and lobbying for refugee housing and assistance, including “life-saving missions at sea” (Avaaz.org).
On clean energy, Avaaz mobilized 1.5 million activists for the People’s Climate Marches and worked to convince world leaders it was time to act. Their online and on-the-ground networking combined with persistent lobbying efforts were called “fundamental to…broad support for climate action” by the Head of UN climate talks, and shepherded the Paris Climate Accord reached in 2016 and resume their.
The way Avaaz promotes global activism on seemingly unrelated causes “may be an asset in a world where campaigns…can still segregate people” (Economist). Avaaz’s multifaceted approach is reflected in its name, which means “voice” in several European, Middle Eastern, and Asian languages. Operating in 15 languages and on 30 continents, Avaaz is the collective voice of people from many cultures acting as one to achieve change and more information click here.