This weeks roundup will focus on some of the new African blog portals, aggregators, social bookmarking and technology blogs.
The two main blog portals are African Path and African Loft. Both portals have a list of regular authors some of whom are bloggers and both syndicate content from select blogs.
http://www.pambazuka.org/images/articles/328/blogs_01_africanpath.gif includes a news feed of African news, a blog written by selected authors, an Directory section with a list of African related businesses many in the Diaspora.
“African Path is the premier online channel for reaching affluent Africans in America, Africa, Europe, China, and elsewhere in the world, providing daily breaking news and discussions on issues affecting Africans and Africa.
With an engaging mix of breaking news in Africa, blogs, biographical profiles, thoughtful discussion and an international community calendar, African Path connects Africans across the world with informed dialogue that leads to progress and growth on the African continent and its contribution to world culture.
To fill the void left by big media in covering information on Africa, African Path provides a forum for Africans anywhere in the world to discuss important issues affecting Africans within and outside the African continent.”
http://www.pambazuka.org/images/articles/328/blogs_02_africanloft.gifAfrican Loft similar to African Path except it also includes a social networking community feature with a growing community. The “chatterbox” feature acts as an aggregator of the “top 50” African blogs though it is not clear how these are selected and for some reason also includes mainstream media sites such as Bua and the BBC. The “discussion forum” seems to be just an extension of the blog area and again the purpose of this section is not clear. One useful addition is the Job Board with a list of both non-profit and corporate jobs.
Both African Path (created by Joshua Wanyama) and African Loft created by blogger Grandiose Parlor provide excellent up to date content on Africa and the Diaspora. Technorati rates African Path with an authority of 236 (22,775) and African Loft an authority of 103 (63,934)
Aggregators are sites that auto collect posts from registered blogs which can by region, country or content.
http://www.pambazuka.org/images/articles/328/blogs_03_afrigator.gifAfrigator aggregates blogs from across the continent and the Diaspora and divides them into channels, best rated posts and new members as well as the real time updates of all registered blogs. Afrigator is described as
“Afrigator is a social media aggregator and directory built especially for African digital citizens who publish and consume content on the Web......You can use Afrigator to index your blog, podcast, videocast or news site (i.e. any site that publishes an RSS feed) and market it to the rest of Africa and the world. You can also use it to discover new sites in the Afrosphere.”
http://www.pambazuka.org/images/articles/328/blogs_04_kenyaunlimited.gifKenya Unlimited incorporates an aggregator and a webring of Kenyan bloggers. KU also includes an annual set of blog awards to it’s members who must be Kenyan or invited by a Kenyan.
http://www.pambazuka.org/images/articles/328/blogs_05_nigerianbloggers.gifNigerian Blog Aggreator is as the name suggests an aggregator of blogs by Nigerian bloggers at home and in the Diaspora. Unlike Kenya Unlimited, the NBA only provides feeds from Nigerian blogs in real time and is undated hourly.
http://www.pambazuka.org/images/articles/328/blogs_06_amatomu.gifAmatomu is an aggregator of South African blogs started by SA newspaper the Mail and Guardian. Unlike Kenya Unlimited and Nigerian Blogs Aggregator, Amatomu is more of a social media aggregator similar to Afrigator.
http://www.pambazuka.org/images/articles/328/blogs_africanwomenblogs.gifAfrican Women’s Blogs is an aggregator of blogs by African women on the continent and in the Diaspora
http://www.pambazuka.org/images/articles/328/blogs_07_muti.gifMuti is a social bookmarking site similar to Digg but with African content. Muti enables users to submit links to posts and media stories and then these can be voted on by other users. There are also “hot”, “new” “most viewed” and “stats” features.
Technology Blogs and Websites
http://www.pambazuka.org/images/articles/328/blogs_08_whiteafrican.gifWhite African writes about technology and how it impacts and can change, Africa. Erik is also a web developer and is presently working on a number of African related projects including Zangu News “ a new way to handle news in Africa” and “List’d Express” an easy eBay listing tool. He is also a contributing author to AfricanGadget.com.
http://www.pambazuka.org/images/articles/328/blogs_09_kiwanja.gifKiwanja.net with the tag line “Where technology meets anthropology, conservation and development” is a blog by Frontline SMS (software to manage sms) creator, Ken Banks and is largely dedicated to the opportunities provided by mobile phone technology in Africa and other parts of the global South.
http://www.pambazuka.org/images/articles/328/blogs_opencafe.gifOpen Cafe is a non-profit internet café specialising in the usage, distribution, training and technical support for open source software and open content materials. It is based in Potchefstroom, South Africa.