09/23/2010 02:02 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Arianna Huffington At CGI: Technology Is An 'Unprecedented Opportunity To Bear Witness' (VIDEO)

Arianna moderated a panel titled "Democracy and Voice: Technology For Citizen Empowerment and Human Rights" at the Clinton Global Initiative on Thursday.

Panelists Ashton Kutcher, Nicholas Kristoff, Mohamed Ibrahim, and Maria Otero discussed the impact of social media on social causes, government reform and the economy.

After the discussion, the group answered questions sent via Twitter.

Arianna directed the first to Kutcher, who was there to discuss how the Ashton And Demi Foundation was using social media to combat child sex trafficking. Girls Inc asked, "How can we allow more women and girls access and embrace technology?"

Noting that 80% of slaves today are women, Kutcher said, "What we can do right now is utilize the platforms that exist to create cultural equality between men and women... the face of slavery has changed and in many cases that face is a woman's face."

"I think the democratization of media will provide voices for those women and actually start to shift that cultural dynamic in a way that has that old saying of 'women and children first', maybe we can actually start to make that a reality. Maybe the men who tout that idea will stand up to say 'Its not OK to buy women anymore,'" he said. "Using social platforms to advocate things like that is a strong start."

In her closing remarks, Arianna pointed to the power of technology to enact social change.

"Now, the privilege that was open only to a few -- leaders in the media, the government -- is available to the public," She said. "It's really an unprecedented opportunity to bear witness and not allow the kind of crimes against humanity to go on."

Technology helps put a face on the figures, Arianna explained.

"We have the tools available to touch human hearts-- that's where the change begins. Not just to have a government index but an empathy index. Thank you so much for being part of it."


Watch live streaming video from cgi_plenary at