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August 30 2012


February 20 2012


Netsquared Regional Conference Buea Cameroon

Conference theme: Cameroon Netsquared Reboot

The Netsquared regional conference Buea Cameroon built for the 9th of February 2012 at Dchucks Palace hotel came to pass as scheduled though we encountered some technical difficulties in carrying out part of our activities. The conference brought together civil society organizations and techies to rethink the future of the network in Cameroon and set a solid foundation. We were lucky enough and highly favored to have:


  • Nicolle Beeby from SANGONet South Africa (www.sangonet.org.za) who spoke on ‘the introduction of Social Media in NGOs’,
  • A 20mins video from Daniel Ben-Horin, CEO of Techsoup Global,
  • Tobias Eigen, Founder Kabissa Kabissa, who spread the news over the web (www.kabissa.org ) and,
  • Asama A. Excel, President & CEO of I-Vission International (www.ivission.net) presenting the historical background of Netsquared network in Cameroon

The following remote presenters could not connect to us due to Internet failure:

Marc Manashil, Community Evangelist for Netsquared (www.netsquared.org): he had to come in to comment the video from the CEO and co founder of Tecsoup Global. Marc just wished us the best through SMS and email.

David Barnard, Executive Director SANGONeT, was to talk on ‘online fund raising’, unfortunately after several attempts to connect us; we could not establish a comfortable connection. He sent us his presentation through email.


After the presentation of participants, Asama A. Excel was given the opportunity to introduce the historical background of Netsquared activities in Cameroon. He briefly explained to the audience how he was in a cyber café, searching for partners in Europe and the United States that promote the use of the web in social activities. This is how he came across Netsquared. He paid more attention on the Netsquareds’ network around the world with the famous Net Tuesdays meetings. Asama Excel developed great interest in the vision of Netsquared in particular and Techsoup Global in general which he said are similar to that of I-Vission International, the NGO he chairs in Cameroon. He decided to get involve by creating a network in Cameroon back in 2008. The Network started and was later on shut down because of in activity. He took the courage and created the group a second time in 2009. That same year, he succeeded to register some few members.

Below are some of the activities Netsquared Cameroon has succeeded to organize since creation:


  • Cameroon Netsquared Campaign in Kribi, August 26-29, 2009. This 3 day event brought together 250 participants from different social sectors. Some of the highlights of the event include: A touristic tour in Kribi, swimming, visit to some orphanages, visit to the Kribi Urban council and the regional delegation of tourism.
  •  Netsquared Camp in Douala-Cameroon: The theme for this event was REMIXING THE WEB FOR SOCIAL CHANGE. It gathered 64 participants both in Douala and its environs to discuss issues on the impact of social web on civil society organizations. Some projects were presented by five different groups.
  • Special training: the Netsquared team headed by Asama A. Excel organized a special training to build the capacity of students on project management on the 7th of February 2012 at the university of Buea Cameroon
  • Local monthly meetings: We have succeeded to organize many local meetings in Cameroon -This regional conference is just part of the activities of Netsquared Cameroon


Challenges encountered

The major challenges we face in Cameroon are:


  • Lack of a good internet connection,
  • Ignorance or low access to the ICTs (Very few people master the social web)
  • Financial and logistic difficulties to organize meetings,
  • Difficulty in attending conferences organized in the USA. Last year in February we were refused Visa to the USA for no concrete reason. This provoked a negative impact on the group as a whole. The group coordinator, Asama Excel was psychologically disturbed and could not organize meetings regularly as a result of this, many members left.


The second speaker of the day was Nicolle Beeby by Nicolle from SANGONet, an NGO based in South Africa (www.sangonet.org.za) She presented the topic: An Introduction to the social Media for NGOs After a series of trials, she succeeded to Skype in. Participants were very attentive to this presentation for two reasons:

  • It was their first time to learn through remote presentation
  • Social media is making the news worldwide and everyone wants to be connected.

She attempted the following definition for social media:


  • Social media is content created by people using highly accessible and scalable publishing technologies
  • A category of sites that is based on user participation and user generated content
  • Online technologies and practices that people use to share opinions, insights experiences, and perspectives with each other 
  • Social media are works of user-created video, audio, text or multimedia that are published and shared in a social environment, such as a blog, wiki or video hosting site


 The importance of social media to NGOs including:


  • User-generated content T
  • The demise of the webmistress J L -It’s so easy – the demise of the ‘tech guy’
  • Getting our voices out there – the demise of the gatekeepers
  • Participation – you speak out; other’s speak back
  • A level playing field – we are all documenters
  • Online presence – many can know about you -Text, audio, video, pictures – documenting gone wild J


 Participants were as well empowered on micro blogging applications like twitter and facebook . Nicolle suggested the following sites for bloggers:



The last segment of her presentation involved multimedia sites with flickr, Zoopy, Youtube channels and Dotsub.


  • Youtube channels, NGOs are offered huge international audiences, limit of 20 minute uploads, 10 million uploads a day.
  • Zoopy: Local option, local audiences, local speeds (faster). Audio, video and photos. Mobile site.
  • Dotsub: Plugging in to a community of translators Nicolle highlighted the necessity of multimedia sites as a great way to find resources on issues related to your work and videos as a great way to effectively explain complex issues in a succinct and entertaining way. You can share explanations about your cause and why it is important. 


Some best practices proposed


  • Read blogs! 
  • CONVERGE ALL YOUR MEDIA eg Send your listeners to the blog transcript 
  • Convince your readers (via email, blog etc to listen tonight...)
  • Make it sustainable – should be easy if you are a media org... 
  • Quality above quantity
  • Respond to comments!!!
  • Don’t just tell – show 
  • ANALYSE ANALYSE ANALYSE (www.google.com/analytics


The Co Founder and CEO of Techsoup Global Daniel Ben-Horin, send us a 20minutes video tape explaining the vision of Techsoup Global. This video was projected several times to permit participants understand how Techsoup Global operates. Many participants notice that the CEO used the word trust, confidence and participating several times as essential tools in building long lasting and solid relationships. The NGOs present were delighted to hear the CEO say Techsoup is looking for credible organizations to work with in Cameroon.

Testimonies and success stories The participants were expecting testimonies from other Netsquared groups but unfortunately none of them volunteered to share with Netsquared Cameroon. We wonder why?. Nonetheless, they encourage us to keep on sharing with others.

The New team for Netsquared Cameroon The following organizations voluntarily accepted the offer to join the team and to give full support for the smooth running of Netsquared Cameroon:


  • Helen Nsume Nkelnsieh:  OREP NGO 
  • Hans Jambe Ebot:      CHAMEG
  • Ngrima Yvonne:       ASWA-RUDEB
  • Halle Simon:           Empowerment PR
  • Samuel Akuro:        Creative Hands
  • Abanda Sammy:      Creative Hands
  • Achu Denis:          Member (Independent Expert)
  • Acho Denis Fominyen:   ASWA-RUDEB 
  • Andre Signing: Member (Independent Expert)
  • Asama Abel Excel:   I-Vission International 
  • Anagho Daniel:   Member (Independent Expert)




  • Participants were called to make contributions in writing to help us design our strategic plan of action,
  • A website will be put in place to promote the activities of Netsquared in Cameroon. Part of the funds received from Techsoup Global should be kept aside for this purpose,
  • The new team made up of civil society organizations shall henceforth develop and execute projects together,
  • A specific fee will be charged for anyone seeking to join the network in Cameroon.
  • Meetings could be held on or off line,
  • More conferences and workshops should be organized regularly to build the capacities of members on social media and other related ICT issues.
  • Facilitate access to ICTs to civil society organizations,
  • Put in place a kind of umbrella bureau at regional levels to coordinate activities on the ground,
  • Put in place an online platform to promote the activities of civil society organizations in Cameroon with priority to those affiliated to Netsquared Cameroon, 
  • Jointly organize activities with local partners, diplomatic representations and foreign stake holders.


 Future event

  A meeting was programmed for the 10th of March 2012 at the headquarters of I-Vission International in Douala to review the strategic plan of action 




Sponsored post

May 03 2011


May Net2 Think Tank: Improving Lives in Rural Communities with ICTs

May 17 will mark World Telecommunication and Information Society Day (WTISD). To celebrate, we're using this year's WTISD theme, "Better Life in Rural Communities with ICTs" to guide our Net2 Think Tank question for May!

For this month's Net2 Think Tank, we're brainstorming ideas for closing the digital divide for people living in rural areas all around the world. How are you bridging the divide and what are your tips for others who are just getting started? Share your projects and ideas with the NetSquared Community!


How can we help improve the lives of people living in rural areas using ICT? What are your tactics and best practices for helping rural communities using web or mobile technology? And, which projects are already doing this well?

Deadline:  Saturday, May 21st

How to contribute:

  • Post your response online: Leave a comment below, write on your own blog or website, post on the NetSquared Community Blog, or share your feedback on Facebook or Linkedin.
  • Tag your post, comment, or tweet with net2thinktank.
  • Email Claire Sale the link to your post.
  • Have you written about this topic in the past? Great! Simply add the net2thinktank tag to your post and email us the link.

Be sure to get your submission in by emailing Claire the link to your post by Saturday, May 21st

The roundup of contributions will be posted on the NetSquared blog on Monday, May 23rd.

About Net2 Think Tank:

Net2 Think Tank is a monthly blogging/social networking event open to anyone and is a great way to participate in an exchange of ideas.  We post a question or topic to the NetSquared community and participants submit responses either on their own blogs, the NetSquared Community Blog, or using social media.  Tag your post with "net2thinktank" and email a link to us to be included. At the end of the month, the entries get pulled together in the Net2 Think Tank Round-Up.


About World Telecommunication and Information Society Day:

The purpose of World Telecommunication and Information Society Day (WTISD) is to help raise awareness of the possibilities that the use of the Internet and other information and communication technologies (ICT) can bring to societies and economies, as well as of ways to bridge the digital divide.

17 May marks the anniversary of the signing of the first International Telegraph Convention and the creation of the International Telecommunication Union. Learn more.

March 04 2011


Further your Knowledge of ICT4D at the University of London

A great educational opportunity - MA in ICT for sustainable development at the University of London

The ICT for development (ICT4D) programme is a new strand within the established and highly successful Master course in Practising Sustainable Development at the Royal Holloway, University of London. The new Masters tries to balance out the proportions between the research and practice and it is designed for those who want to launch or further their careers as development practitioners or scholars.

The University is looking for the people with a good academic background in a field related i.e. natural or social sciences, and/or considerable professional experience in the development and environment protection field.

Read more about the programme and apply

February 11 2011


About John Zoltner for TSG2011


I am DataDyne.org's Director for Latin America and the Caribbean, based in Santiago, Chile and President of The Zoltner Consulting Group.

My mission is to continue to create sustainable platforms that can be used by organizations, governments and people worldwide to achieve development goals and reach the world's poor with actionable information that can improve their lives and livelihoods. I have a particular interest in mobile technology, rural development, agricultural development and healthcare.

DataDyne.org, a social enterprise based in Washington, DC, is one of the world's foremost developers of mobile applications for development. DataDyne's EpiSurveyor (www.episurveyor.org) application for mobile data collection is used by more than 3,000 people and organizations in more than 140 countries, making it the most-used mobile health application in the development sector. We are constantly looking for new projects and challenges in order to improve our tools and expand their use. 

After recently winning the FRIDA Award for the DatAgro project -- also a former NetSquared Mobile Challenge finalist and winner of the FACT Social Justice and Yahoo! Green Awards -- DataDyne plans to make its Mobile Information Platform (MIP), the software it built to power DatAgro, available globally as a web application. In doing so, we hope to mirror the phenomenal success we've achieved with EpiSurveyor. We are looking for technical and market expertise to help us make that transition, pilot projects to test the tool in varying environments, and funds to support the process.



My Bio: http://www.google.com/profiles/jzoltner

web: http://www.datadyne.org 

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/jzoltner

LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/jzoltner

YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/zoltnergroup



Skype: john_zoltner

Tel: +562-895-6922

Cel: +569-74-953-935


October 14 2010



Dear Friends of Social Change,

The FACT Challenge is at hand and the voting is running out of time!
I know you must have made some choices; but permit me share
 some few words of wisdom inspired by Nelson Mandela:

  1. Never make decisions in a haste

  2. Be ready to come back to a decision when need be

  3. Never keep your eyes off the challenge (problem) on the field

In Cameroon, we have two challenges:

read more

October 04 2010

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