By RITS RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil, 28 April 2004
‘Citizens Online’ (Cidadania na Internet), a Brazilian civil society information-sharing portal, celebrated one-year online on March 27. A multi-institution project managed by APC member in Brazil, RITS, ‘Citizens online’ started out life with twenty organisations on board. One year later, sixty people and groups work together daily to produce information to strengthen Brazilian citizenship in all its facets.
"This portal was born ‘under construction’ and will carry on ‘under construction’ – as more and more citizens become part of the community, as more articles are published, every reader is helping to build ‘Citizens Online’", says RITS’ information and communication manager, Graciela Selaimen. "We realise that a project like this doesn’t get built in one, two, maybe even three years. It takes time to get the foundations in place. Most importantly we want to build something collaborative and democratic and that takes time to mature. That’s the goal of this project, to construct a work process and a space for information and communication that will make a difference and make Brazil a better country."
‘Citizens Online’ has followed big events like the World Trade Organisation meeting in Cancun, the ‘PrepComs’ (preparatory meetings) of the World Summit on the Information Society and most recently the World Social Forum held in India for Brazilians back home.