The third episode of Feminist Digital Futures features Naomi Fontanos, who shares with us her imagination of feminist social media: one that is anti-patriarchy, anti-capitalism, and anti-colonialism. Naomi likens social media platforms to cyber heterotopias, emphasizes the need to de-center Global North perspectives to techno-design and governance, and urges us to rethink the core principles on which social media is built, in order to decolonize it and restructure it along feminist principles.

Episode Navigation
00:10: Introduction
00:47: About Naomi
01:29: How gender and other identities affect experiences of the online sphere
07:48: Why equal access to and participation in social media is a feminist issue
11:29: Naomi’s vision of a feminist social media
14:31: How platform design and governance needs to change, from a feminist and Global South perspective
19:12: Opinions on platform attempts to regulate content
22:10: Conclusion

Naomi Fontanos is a long-time advocate of the Filipino transgender, lesbian, gay, bisexual, intersex, and queer (TLGBIQ) community and an advocate of feminism. She is a co-founder and current Executive Director of Gender and Development Advocates (GANDA) Filipinas, a TLGBIQ human rights organization primarily focused on the issues, needs, and concerns of the trans community in the Philippines and beyond. She graduated from the University of the Philippines Diliman, and in 2008, became the first trans co-coordinator of Task Force Pride (TFP) Philippines, the official organizing network of the annual Metro Manila Pride March. She was part of the International Advisory Board of the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) in reviewing the 7th Standards of Care (SOC), for international clinical protocols for safe transitioning for trans people, and was a part of the external peer review team of the World Health Organization (WHO) for its consolidated guidelines on HIV prevention, diagnosis, treatment and care for key populations in 2014. In 2015, she became the first trans Filipina to be a fellow of the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) of the United States State Department on Preventing and Responding to Bias-Motivated Violence Against the LGBT Community. In 2018, she was named a fellow of the Internet Freedom Festival (IFF) held at Valencia, Spain. She is currently a Programme Officer of Innovation for Change-East Asia, one of seven regional hubs worldwide, spearheaded at the global level by CIVICUS Alliance, which looks to transform civil society impact, scale citizen action, and create the opportunity for a new generation of civic action to take shape through collaboration, leverage, and learning.

Hosted by: Tanvi Kanchan
Research and conceptualization: Nandini Chami & Tanvi Kanchan
Post-production: Tanvi Kanchan
Podcast artwork by: Harmeet Rahal

This podcast series has been produced as part of the Feminist Digital Justice project, a joint policy research and advocacy initiative of IT for Change and DAWN (Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era). The series is co-supported by the World Wide Web Foundation.