Thursday, December 28, 2006

A 2006 year end message for my readers

I was having a look at the yearly stats for this blog today and noticed that I haven’t posted to Jewels in the Jungle in 45 days. This recess period has provided me with a much needed break from the daily grind of following the news, researching and analyzing information online, reading the work of fellow blog authors, and all of the related activities necessary to keep this baby up-and-running. As many blog authors and online journalists and writers already know, maintaining a blog can be an awful lot work. I must add that it has also been a labor of love and you my readers and especially those of you who have left encouraging and inspiring comments to my 200+ posts to date have had a profound effect on how I view and contemplate the world we all live in.

I am often in awe and deeply moved and inspired by the creative work of fellow blog authors, online journalists and writers, and multimedia producers out there who have contributed so generously and bravely to the global dialogues taking place on the Web and in the blogosphere. My hat is off to many of you (a full Hat Tip, Ma’am) as I feel so enriched by your work online as you share with us your views about the world, anecdotes, analysis on complicated issues, your humor and your sorrows.

My friend Imnakoya of
Grandiose Parlor, who has recently returned from Delhi, India where the Global Voices Annual Summit and the Hibiscus Project seminar was held last month, points readers to the TIME Magazine Person of the Year 2006 feature that celebrates YOU the online world community as the big movers and shakers of the year. I couldn’t agree more, you’ve come a long way since the birth of the Web and you can be sure that your voices are having a profound impact on the media, on politics and business, on just about everything.

The co-founders of
Global Voices Online, Rebecca MacKinnon and Ethan Zuckerman, deserve a special award and congratulations for their brainchild over at Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society. GVO is attracting more than 1.1 million visitors a month (Yeow!!!) from all over the globe and has a community of contributors and volunteers worldwide that would be the envy of any organization or company. I am so honored to have had the opportunity to interact with these talented and gifted media and technology pioneers over the past few years. A deep bow of respect to Ethan and Rebecca and the hard-working global GVO volunteer crew and much luck to Rebecca as she begins her new higher education gig over in Hong Kong, PRC next year. Word on the street is that Ethan has been offered a “kingship” somewhere on the coast of West Africa, but I can’t verify that news as of this writing. Stay tuned for more updates on Ethan's whereabouts.

Last but by no means least, I am so pleased and inspired by the participation of people from Africa in the blogosphere and the Web this year. Many times I think to myself that there is no point to continue writing at Jewels in the Jungle about news and issues concerning Africa because there are so many great and talented writers from Africa and non-Africans who are knowledgeable about Africa publishing online today that my voice is really not needed. I and many others from around the world could have never dreamed that Africa would step forward in such a self-assured, interesting, and creative manner online as what we have witnessed over the past few years. You have been in a word M-A-G-N-I-F-I-C-E-N-T and I regret deeply that I can no longer sit down with the older generation of my grandparents and their friends back in my hometown St. Louis, MO. and all across America to tell them stories about what I have learned about Africa from your beautiful work… as these dear people have passed on to the other side of the river.

So, as the New Year 2007 is just around the corner I want to say “Thank You” to my readers and to my fellow blog authors and friends. My best wishes and my prayers are always with you as we take the next steps forward together into this challenging and troubled century.

See you next year in 2007, God willing. Remember to "Rock the World on New Years Eve", but rock her gently and party safely.
Auf Wiedersehen Ya’ll.

Technorati tags: