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Yoani Sanchez

Yoani Sanchez

Posted: December 15, 2009 08:21 PM

The Free Blogosphere Takes Off in Cuba

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Like the sneeze of a desired flu, the alternative Cuban blogosphere continues to propagate itself. It is no longer like the bleak wasteland that displayed -- if anything -- a few pseudonymous pages in April 2007, when I started Generation Y. I've lost count of how many we are now, because every week I learn that at least two new virtual spaces have been born. The blockade of various blogger platforms and the constant attacks have served only to make the virus of free opinion mutate into forms more complicated to shut up. The DNA of citizen expression will not concede in the face of vaccines based on intimidation and defamation; eventually everyone will be infected.


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The plurality of approaches is the sign that the public squares of discussion have found, in cyberspace, a scenario more tolerant than reality. I know sites of catharsis for accumulated frustrations, while others specialize in news or protest. They range from pleasant blogs such as Cuba Fake News, to magazines filled with indispensable articles in the style of Convivencia. Their authors range from former counterintelligence agents from the Interior Ministry to exiled writers from the official publishing houses. They are all joined by the need to express themselves, the tense desire to be done with the cycle of silence that has lasted too long.

Such a bundle of free electrons, this blogosphere doesn't respond to any hierarchy or leading figures. Its strength is that it is not possible to cut off its head, or to catch it, a slippery and playful being with no need to reach agreement or carry credentials. During the time they spend developing a strategy to fight it, for which they meet on high, preparing a law under the direction of the possible executors of censorship, the number of sites on the Island has already doubled. When they begin to understand what it's about and how to administer an antidote, the blogger fever will have made the temples of thousands of Cubans throb.

Yoani's blog, Generation Y, can be read here in English translation.

 
 
 

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