MobLab Dispatch

MobLab Dispatch | Originally sent on 9 October 2018
The Dispatch tracks innovations in people-powered campaigning, training opportunities and mobilisation jobs around the globe. Get it in your inbox and catch up on past Dispatches.

What flavor of organising is right for your campaign? Big? Community-based? Distributed? Natasha Adams offers a non-exhaustive list of some of the approaches to building power. [Thinking, Doing, Changing]

In India, a women’s peace march promotes justice and non-violence in a distributed way. The Baatein Aman Ki is divided into five routes, and participants work with local NGOs and citizen groups in each place to coordinate talks, public meetings, and cultural performances. [Madhura Chandana | Women’s Web]

How do we “let go” and still win? During the most recent episode of MobLab Live about distributed organising, special guests from Free Press, and Beyond the Bomb talked about how they have created opportunities for volunteers to take an active, meaningful role in campaigns. Watch the discussion here.

Based in the London area? Planning to attend MozFest?

We’re hosting a training in Modern Campaign Fundamentals on 22 and 23 October. Participants will learn how to design campaigns that target root causes, shift dominant narratives, and not only build power, but distribute it.

Register now to save your spot at what a recent attendee called “extremely informative, enlightening, motivating and empowering.” Your trainers Jacqui and Michael hope to see you there!


What do peace processes without women produce? Less peace. “Nonviolent resistance campaigns have historically been twice as successful as armed struggles, typically leading to more peaceful and democratic societies. Women’s participation is key to their overall effectiveness.” [Daniel Nerenberg | Washington Post]

The “female blackout” campaign shows why nimble action must be paired with nuanced thinking. The Facebook-based effort failed to take off, due to imprecise language, a lack of a call to action, and its shaky premise of women staying silent as a means of effecting change. [Hanna Kozlowska | Quartz]

Mapping technology boosts the fight for local land rights. The Dayak of Indonesia use drones to map their villages as a way to combat narratives claiming the lands are uninhabited. And the New Social Cartography Program of the Amazon helps forest peoples create GPS data points that identify their homes and other sites of significance. [Steve Rhee and Aurélio Vianna Jr. | Ford Foundation]


Female journalists in Cameroon kick off the country’s own #MeToo movement. The women are reaching out to educators and media managers in an effort to change the industry’s culture from the top down and bottom up. [Sherry Ricchiardi | International Journalists’ Network]

More than 20 of the largest civil liberties and environmental protection groups band together to combat SLAPP lawsuits. The “Protect the Protest” coalition will jointly campaign when its members or other organisers without the resources to defend themselves are faced with these “strategic lawsuits against public participation.” [Ben Paynter | Fast Company]

The importance of flexibility: Pasión Petare, a football NGO for disadvantaged children in Venezuela, added a meal programme when fewer players were coming to practice due to their parents’ inability to provide food. [Belinda Soncini | Miami Herald]


Google releases a privacy app successfully tested among Venezuelan activists. Intra allows users to access blocked sites by taking on DNS manipulation. [Alfred Ng | CNET]

Blockchain could help Rohingya refugees without official ID. One community leader is trialing the technology to record individual identities, which would then allow Rohingya to access social and legal programmes. [Skot Thayer and Alex Hern | The Guardian]

A chat bot lets Russians detained at protests request legal assistance. The encrypted Telegram tool, created by the NGO OVD-Info, gives users advice on what to do after being arrested and which legal statues to cite when speaking with police. [Christopher Moldes | Global Voices Advox]


Training protesters in civic engagement, non-violent tactics, and legal rights: Corupția Ucide’s activist hub in Bucharest is a space for members of the anti-corruption Rezist movement to meet, build trust, and debate their next action. [Alexandru Predoiu | Waging Nonviolence]

Careful strategy is critical in building power among US farmworkers. Planning legal, media and organising approaches, as well as researching the supply chain, are key to fighting back against retaliation. [Rebekah Barber | Facing South]

When women choose the news, regular people get the spotlight. NewsMavens, a roundup curated exclusively by women, observes that women show “consistent curiosity” about those lower down the power structure, while mass media focuses on the opposite. [Zuzanna Ziomecka | NewsMavens]

Practical advice for turning talk about equity and diversity into action: Make space for (and follow) new leaders; create incentives to shift systems instead of relying on individual behaviour; re-evaluate imagery; and more. [Emily Teitsworth | Stanford Social Innovation Review]

Are you a social change leader who wants to learn more about root causes of inequalities? The Atlantic Fellowship for Social and Economic Equity at the International Inequalities Institute (London School of Economics) is open for applications.

What we can learn from people who don’t use smartphones or social media: Being in the same space matters; disconnecting doesn’t mean exclusion; and constant connection means less truly free time. Digital tools do wonders in our campaigns, but we shouldn’t forget to take a break now and again. [Rowland Atkinson and Mariann Hardey | The Conversation]


Interesting conferences, events and trainings across our global network.


Looking to create change (or make a change)? Scan these open roles in campaigning, digital innovation and social change leadership. Have a job to share? Send us a link!

Featured photo: “Welcome to the Resisterhood.” 2017 women’s march in San Francisco. By Flickr user Dale Cruse. CC BY 2.0

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