Given the advancement of technology we need to live with and adapt to, local and global media have risen to almost unbelievable heights of communication networks and facilities to influence change and develop new forms of applications.
Asmarino is one of the earliest and pioneering websites that has been providing media service to Eritreans at home and in Diaspora for the last 15 years. The initiative was taken by an individual who felt there was this deep and desperate need to help Eritreans come together and share information.
It was that simple then!
Over the years, Asmarino website - as any dedicated and responsible media outlet would aim for - has grown like a tree in the wild and did its best to serve the Eritrean public with news up-dates and an informative platform for a collective and personal freedoms of expression and its development that encouraged writers, artists, civil societies and political organizations. In a sense, it opened a window and sustained possibilities of sharing that kept a candle burning despite the challenges it had to overcome.
Yes, it had its critical years - moments and months that it had to raise itself from the dead. Yes, it had its ups and downs. There were days when it was shut down. But it had always managed to revive itself and its visitors, readers and contributors whose goodwill never bottomed out; they were always willing to give it their benefit of doubt - despite its occasional failings. Their morale and financial support and participation was essential not only to its performance but to its very existence as well.
At a time when there comes a noticeable shift of the epicenter of Eritrean resistance in Diaspora from websites to social media that provide networking such as FaceBook and PalTalk, it is not surprising to see a similar shift in the audience. Given the massive platform of opportunity of participation being made online, it is still important that Asmarino and other Eritrean websites complement these new developments in social media in that they provide an alternative and in-depth analysis of various issues relevant to Eritrea. In other words, neither type of media should be taken as a substitute to the other.
Asmarino intends to overhaul itself in order to meet the challenges coming from the ever-changing conditions in the Eritrean cyberspace and the Eritrean demographics in Diaspora. We know there is no other choice: it is either adapt or die.
With your help, it can survive!
The areas that we want to work on are:
- We want to develop the video section, even though we believe that it is one of our sections that has been doing fine.
- We want to create an audio section; and if circumstances allow us, we will elevate that to a radio section.
- We want to emphasize the Tigrigna section, something that has recently taken a secondary place.
- We will focus on the problem of writers on the English section. A better job needs to be done on our side to attract writers.
Given the overwhelming number of the youth that have been arriving in the West, it would be of no surprise if most of the changes we want to introduce will be done with this young audience in mind; of course, without abandoning our old audience.
Now, it has come to another level of engagement and challenge and it begins with financial contributions from you - our readers and friends - to keep Asmarino going.
The website is kept rolling by a few bunch of dedicated volunteers but the opportunities and challenges ahead will require much more to provide the diversified needs and demands that have sprung up over the last few years.
Your contribution is highly appreciated. It will give hope to sustain its future and catch up with new social media development.
Simply because there is so much more to be done!
YOU CAN DONATE USING CREDIT CARD USING PAYPAL
NB If you would like to know more about the nature of Asmarino, its past achievements and its future aspirations, there are two short articles, one written two years ago as appeal to readers in a fundraising occasion and the other written on its 12th anniversary, whose links are provided below: