20 November 2012

WSYA Power 2 Women: GotStared.at / Saransh

As you should know by now, I ♥ Being a Girl received one of the 2012 World Summit Youth Awards. The award showcases the best ICT solutions made by young people that moves us closer to achieving the MDGs. Ours is - obviously - in the category Power to Women.

As we are far from being the only ones doing things around gender via the internets and such, here you have some more:   

Saransh Dua, @SaranshDua and GotStared.At

I enjoy spending time with family and friends, reading, and traveling.

GotStared.At has grown a lot as a campaign in terms of the core idea behind the movement. Now it is a movement that aims to create a counter culture amongst the people in our society where respecting the other gender would be considered cool.

Over history it has been realized that certain trends tend to catch the fancy of the common man. AIDS awareness, education for the poor, green energies, etc. are examples of causes which, obviously being quite relevant, managed to gain wide spread public support in India when compared to many other pertinent issues as well. We aim to create something similar with the idea of gender as the central theme.

For too long the idea of gender debates, discussions have been a talk amongst the elitist in India. This needs to be converted into a discussion amongst the masses and we aim to do just that. We are all about simplification of complex issues which the public tend to shy away from discussing simply because of the jargon used in the messages sent to the public or the fact that in the age of twitter and face book people tend to be drawn more towards graphic driven content. We create posters and other visualizations portraying complex issues in the common mans parlance. The result of this is that rather than people tuning into what maybe a few experts have to say, to tune into what their community has to say and engage with them on the online platforms provided by us.

The idea behind #itsnotherfault came out at a time when most of the public in India was extremely hassled over the widespread assumptions that the girls who were getting molested on the street of India were the ones who were asking for it. This meant that the short clothes and bar hopping lifestyles were causing a rise in the “testosterone” levels of the Indian male and the poor guys had no option but to sexually harass the women as she was apparently “asking for it”.

So the site GotStared.At was initially developed by Dhruv as a place to come in and post what they were wearing while they were harassed. This led to a tremendous amount of virality as it was tackling a very pertinent issue of victim bashing as described above.
People from all over the world started posting pictures of the clothes that they were wearing when harassed and the flow of entries still hasn’t stopped as everyday there is more proof of the fact that no matter where you are, the only thing that will cause the harassment is the perpetrator and his intentions and nothing else.

The world would be a better place if everybody would:
  - See something new every week.
  - Listen to The Beatles, Pink Floyd and the list goes on...
  - Read The Story of My Experiments with Truth, Poor Economics, Think, The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid.
  - Try being genuine and humane.

Before I'm 80, I'd like to... travel the world.

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