Activists and NGOs are facing a global pushback. Technology is accelerating that process and we need to better understand how it’s happening. But technology can also connect us and amplify our activist response.

In reaction to the attacks we must tell our stories and strengthen our narratives. We need to get people involved in our causes, and use technology as a megaphone for engagement.

MEGAPHONE is an international event that provides space for collaborative discussions and peer-to-peer learning to brainstorm new ideas between activists, action groups, and NGOs from Central Eastern Europe and Central Asia who are struggling in the era of polarization, disinformation, and social media algorithms.

The challenge this year will be – how do we recreate a huge part of what MEGAPHONE was about without seeing each other in person? How do we substitute the human connection, joint group work during workshops and casual talks during lunchtime? The short answer is we don’t. It will be different but an online meeting is still a meeting, it’s still a connection and we need those more than ever right now. We also feel like despite this incredibly difficult months that the whole world has been through there are some things to be hopeful about. This might in some ways be a chance for a re-start.

Let’s support each other, build new and strengthen the existing networks. Let’s meet at MEGAPHONE.

The working language of the event is English, so good command of the language is necessary.

Code of conduct

MEGAPHONE is an event for activists from CEE and Central Asia whose aim is to understand and better respond to the process of shrinking civic spaces. The rules enlisted below apply for any and all conference venues, including sessions, workshops, after parties etc. and social media. We would like to all participants, sessions leaders, donors, volunteers and us – organizers to follow the below mentioned rules:

  • Act fairly, honestly, and in good faith with other participants;
  • Listen actively (especially if you have the loudest voice);
  • Engage in conversations which challenge your world views;
  • Act with integrity and respect even when you disagree;
  • Facilitate transparency and openness as much as possible;
  • Assist in creating a welcoming and respectful environment, by following instructions from our staff and volunteers;
  • Respect the privacy rights of participants that attend MEGAPHONE, irrespective of nationality, gender, racial or ethnic origin, religion or beliefs (or lack thereof), disability, age, or sexual orientation, physical appearance, body size or technology choices everyone has the right to be free from harassment.
  • Harassment of any kind will not be tolerated [harassment includes offensive verbal comments related to gender, gender identity and expression, age, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, ethnicity, religion, technology choices, sexual images in public spaces, deliberate intimidation, stalking, following, harassing photography or recording, sustained disruption of talks or other events, inappropriate physical contact, and unwelcome sexual attention];
  • Any harassing or disrespectful behavior, comments, messages, images or interactions by any participant will not be tolerated;
  • You should report any unusual or inappropriate activity directly to one of our staff or to the contact below;
  • MEGAPHONE organizers reserve the right to revoke the attendance privileges of any offending individual or party and determine on what basis this decision is made.

Code of Conduct and Anti-Harassment Policy Response Process: when there has been an incident or breach of this code, the MEGAPHONE team will confidentially review and respond to any participant who has experienced harassment, inappropriate behavior, or a violation of the code of conduct. The final decision on any disciplinary action will be made by a TechSoup Board and communicated to those involved.

Please contact us at megaphone@techsoup.org or contact Maja Durlik (mdurlik@techsoup.org).

Thank you to ePaństwo Personal Democracy Forum CEE for letting us use their Code of Conduct as an inspiration.

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