Socio-Political Networking

ICTs are also invaluable for migrant women for social and political networking. On a more political front, they help migrant women bring their plight and causes to public consciousness. Many migrant organizations, either by migrant women themselves or NGOs and church groups that work for migrants, have their own website. Most have an online presence not just to cater to social and psychological needs but also for advocacy purposes.15 http:// pinoyteachersnetwork.blogspot.com illustrates this. It is a blog established by the Pinoy Teachers Network, an organization of the hundreds of migrant Filipino basic education teachers in the United States who are predominantly women. The blog provides not only news and current events reflecting the joys and struggle of Filipino teachers in the US but also relevant video clips, features on model overseas Filipino teachers, that is, Ulirang Guro or Model Teacher and links to important information, particularly from the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) website.16

A cursory look at the website on organizations working with migrants in Hong Kong, meanwhile, gives the contact information (phone, fax, website, and email address) of various important organizations and leaders of the various associations of Asian migrant women domestic workers in Hong Kong.17 ICTs’ role in the socio-political life of migrant women clearly transcends borders.

Social networking, however, could also pose problems for migrant women. Some who resort to illicit or extra-marital affairs post pictures on social networking sites that become the means with which the wife back home learns about the affair.18 Its discovery leads to all sort of marital and family problems that, in many cases, lead to separation, divorce, and family disintegration. The problems that arise for migrant women from arguably indiscriminate posting in social networking sites come not only from migrant families but even from the local community and/or governments in destination countries. This is true, particularly in ultra-conservative countries like Saudi Arabia that even went to the extent of sending an email advisory to the Philippine embassy in Riyadh regarding sexy photos on social networking sites,19 after the locals complained about photos uploaded by a Filipino community organization of a female “model” based in the Kingdom wearing a transparent night gown.

 
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