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DEX Team

  • Oyatunde Amakisi
  • Mallory Knodell
  • Alicia Schwartz
  • Hendrik Voss
  • Leslie Jones
  • Pierre George
  • Luciano Frontelle
  • Jenny Tapia Hernandez

An Early Approach to Detroit Expanded


At the 2008 World Social Forum in Brazil it was announced that the United States Social Forum was going to be in Detroit, Michigan. The world was excited about coming to Detroit. It is recognized as a city that has been impacted by powerful movements (labor rights/union, civil rights, Black Liberation Movement, etc…).

Technology was used as a way to make the WSF accessible to people could not go to Brazil. Activists accessed workshops/PMAs/plenaries through video conferencing. The goal is to make that happen at the USSF 2010. We want to bring Detroit to the world.


Workshop proposals ask organizers if they are interested in participating, giving a brief description of the event: Detroit Expanded (Dex) is the expanded process of video/audio conferencing/streaming or collaboration through simultaneous activities in an effort to expand the events of the US Social Forum beyond Detroit. Commitment to an expanded event requires your organization to connect to, do outreach in and planning with the communities and organizations which will partner with you during your workshop

Contacts for the workshops will then be contacted by a mass email from which point on volunteers will follow-up to secure rooms, ensure global participation points, and answer questions. On the ground, in Cobo Hall, specific rooms will be dedicated to DEX.

We also want to show the amazing things that are happening in the city beyond Cobo Hall. There will be world class concerts at Hart Plaza, a cultural/social justice tour of Detroit, major activities at the Urban Tent Village in the heart of Detroit, urban gardens, bike hubs, etc...

Global Outreach

We would like to make video conferencing/streaming accessible to groups and individuals, with emphasis on groups and community centers (coffee houses, local libraries, community centers, churches, mosques, etc). We are connecting to organizations/grassroots organizations around the United States and other countries to set up DEX hubs.

DEX hubs will be set up in Venezuela, Cuba, Brazil, Mexico, South Africa, Mexico, Liberia, and many places throughout the United States and world.

Working Groups that need to be involved / engaged:

o Program and Culture
o Outreach
o Youth Working Group
o Language Access
o Communications

Program and Culture should anchor DEX, with the lead coming from Detroit Local Organizing Committee.

DEX Hubs Proposal:

The USSF should be accessible to anyone who has the desire to participate. The goal for the United States is to set up at least 100 USSF hubs, with the goal of placing a focus on rural, immigrant and indigenous communities. Hubs will need the following:

o internet access
o computer with video conferencing capabities
o rooms that are accessible to folks with disabilities
o access to projectors

Hubs will need to publicize their location and viewing hours. How does this happen?

I suggest that we use the wiki for this dynamic information.. ~~ MarkDilley

Outstanding Questions:

o other ways to provide access to the forum in locations without internet access? (i.e. public access television stations, radio stations)
o what can we provide to hubs “in return” ? Website advertising,etc?
o How do we publicize where the hubs are located?
o Do we ask hubs to sign an agreement? If so, what is the content of those agreements?

Developing Youth Leadership and Digital Justice

Youth and media justice activists will be the videographers. The young people will also do interviews with cultural activists and at the cultural/social justice sites to highlight the best of Detroit.

We will be working very closely with the ICT, Youth, and Communications Working Groups to bring our vision into reality. After the USSF the cameras will be donated to groups involved with youth media and social justice in Detroit.

How to secure these materials and videographers:

o Ask the communications working group to anchor securing resources for DEX
o Put out a broad call on the USSF website for resources and technology for use at the USSF that can be secured through the USSF (i.e. insured somehow)
o Work with companies and foundations to purchase 100 Flip cameras and 50 video cameras to be donated to groups in Detroit post-USSF
o Put out a national call to youth media groups for support in documentation
o Publicize through Allied Media Conference

groups that will be interested in supporting DEX: SmartMeme, Center for Media Justice, Praxis Project

Return to Culture Subcommittees main page.

Return to Program/Culture WG main page.