Ethiopia is one of the least represented countries on the internet. According to the ITU2009 report only 0.4% of the populations have access to the information on the internet. The traffic generated by Ethiopian sites has been limited. This makes the country less favorable to online businesses. Content is indeed king.
A few months ago Joern and I made a little research and we found out that Ethiopia had less than 20 bloggers in the country. This is rather shocking stats compared to 160,000 (July 2008) Bloggers in Egypt. Interestingly, according to a report released by the Egyptian Cabinet’s Information and Decision Support Center (IDSC), there were just 40 bloggers in 2004. On contrary, Ethiopian love to socialize using social media like Facebook. 90.07% of internet users use Facebook in daily basis. This makes Ethiopia one of the highest Facebook users per population per internet access. Ethiopia ranks 98 out of 187 countries with number of Facebook users. The internet penetration in the country also increases in a big scale.
When we took the initiatives to promote content generation and blogging in the country, we already saw a positive change in the last few months. The number of bloggers has been doubled and it still growing. Part of our recent efforts, the Ethiopian-blog aggregator and the GreenTechEthiopia blog are two good examples.
The Heinrich Böll Foundation sponsors the GreenTechEthiopia blog which aims to encourage online interaction and information sharing about green technologies. In this platform, we transfer knowledge and info about new green technology available in the country to the world. John F. Nebel, one of the famous bloggers in Berlin, and I gave the first blogging training at iceEthiopia. The response is enormously satisfactory. Though many of the participants have a journalism background, one fourth of them didn’t know what a blog means and only one of the trainees own a blog. The next training is planned for early December this year.
There is a dramatically significant progress on Ethiopian blogosphere so as Ethiopian representation on the internet. Ethiopian netizens started to talk already – are you following?