Posts by Alaksiej Lavoncyk

CA overlooked again as Twitter crowdsources translation

Mar 20, 2013

Twitter has opened up its code for translation into more than 50 languages. This is a great opportunity for users all over the world to contribute to and adopt the platform in their own language.  Yet one region, as seems to be a growing trend, seems noticeably absent. Read More »

Bridging the digital divide (one Central Asian language at a time)

Mar 12, 2013

The localization of Skype into the Kyrgyz language in 2011 has been the first step to opening the world’s most popular messenger to the people who do not – surprise, surprise – speak Russian or English. Read More »

In Belarus, gadgets gadgets everywhere nor any freedom to tweet

Feb 13, 2013

Perhaps you saw the funny quote in my news feed on Facebook that read: “This country looks like a post-apocalyptic world. Everyone has got gadgets, phones, and tablets – and around you see broken roads and loads of waste”. Read More »

Looking East: The Russian example of volunteerism for Belarus

Dec 24, 2012
Social participation is something that works for Russia sometimes as well as in the West. Or at least, OK, better than it does in Belarus.

In Belarus, converting online power to offline momentum

Dec 10, 2012

Belarus is known for its peculiar attitude to its own culture (or maybe it’s better to say we have a peculiar attitude to our president who has been running the country without any changes since 1994). Read More »

Belarusian language finds refuge in online community

Nov 22, 2012

Belarus is a country with two state languages: Belarusian and Russian. While the first one stands higher in the national constitution, that’s only because B comes earlier than R in the alphabet. As of the 2009 national census, fewer than 2/3 of the population call Belarusian their native language but not even 1/4 reported speaking it. In comparison, more than 80 percent claimed Belarusian as their native language in the 1999 census. Read More »

Belarusian opposition VK groups hacked, admins arrested

Aug 30, 2012

Unknown hackers have hacked a popular opposition community page in the social network of, and at the same time several of the pages’ moderators have been arrested. Read More »

Belarusian blogger signs up for election, turns to VK for help

Jul 20, 2012

Ihar Slucak, the blogger who inspired the “State in Belarusian” campaign, is planning to stand for the Belarusian parliamentary elections in September 2012. His team, as well as the district he would run in, has been picked through VKontakte, the the biggest Russian-speaking social network ,which claims to host at least 4,000,000 accounts from Belarus. Read More »

ElectBy returns for elections in Belarus

Jul 12, 2012, an Ushahidi-based platform for monitoring electoral violations, has returned to Belarus after a 16-month absence. The platform, created on the eve of the 2010 elections, collected nearly 650 reports of irregularities by December 19. On election day, the website received more than 8,000 visitors. Read More »

Cyberactivism branches out beyond just politics in Belarus

Jul 9, 2012

Social networks dealing with local issues is hardly anything new, but in Belarus they tend to focus exclusively on politics. (an example of the latter is the revolution, organized through social networks, that rocked the streets of Minsk in the summer 2011).

Read More »

Skype gets an Uzbek interface, helps bridge digital divide

Jun 20, 2012

The world’s most popular IP telephony and text messenger application now has an Uzbek interface thanks to an Uzbek blogger. Skype, which is not an open source platform, and whose official list of available languages had not been updated with the new language versions in almost two years, still permits anyone to extract the language file and localize the interface. Read More »

Central Asian SICamp Redux: smaller, more wired, and with beer smuggling

Jun 6, 2012

The second Social innovation camp was held 31 May – 3 June in Almaty, Kazakhstan. Although smaller than its predecessor in 2011 on the Kyrgyz Issyk Kul, it has had some changes that made it a great event. Read More »

Spreading social innovation in Central Asia with SICamp 2012

Apr 16, 2012
Transitions is launching the second SICamp, together with the Soros Foundation in Kazakhstan, which will take place on 17-20 May in or near Almaty. Read More »

Social ghosts more than a nuisance in Belarus?

Mar 16, 2012

Fake profiles have been cropping up in Belarusian Facebook circles.  Is this just marketing gone social, or something more sinister? Read More »

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