The famous crowdsourcing website and infohub on protests/activism crowdvoice.org has hung up its boots so to speak. The message on the home page of the website says: “After 10 years of collecting crucial on-the-ground evidence on various social justice issues worldwide, the application will now be in read-only mode. Thank you for all your support.”
Esra’a al Shafei, the founder of crowdvoice, wrote a pragmatic elegy about the project, its success, and what she learned in the process. Though the website has stopped adding new information, there’s ample and percious archival data in its vault to keep us occupied and glued. Future generation of protesters have plenty inspiration to glean, and intellectuals/researchers/journalists have enough fodder and reasons to keep returning to the project.
One such archive is “Caste Based Atrocities and Dalit Movements” of India. The evidences, testimonies, and news materials are neatly organized under Backstory (which is a detailed timeline), Infographic (a broadsheet of data), and Media Feed. This could be a great resource to share with an introductory class on social movements or a class on dalit atrocities.
One particularly unforgettable story in the archive is that of Bant Singh, a Dalit farmer from Punjab, whose limbs were chopped off because he dared to lodge a court case against upper caste assailants who raped his daughter. Bant Singh survived, and he became even more legendary and turned into a community leader by his singing abilities. Here is a short film made on him.