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Yoani Sanchez - Generacion Y blogger


© Generation Y
Yoani Sanchez, 34, born 4th September 1975 in Havana. Cuban dissident.

Background: Although it's renowned for its cigars, there's a dark side to Cuba. The multi-party system is non-existent, the press belongs to the State, journalists can't write without official authorization, opponents are imprisoned and there is only one Internet provider.

What she fights for: Democracy, human rights, freedom of the press, the end of police repression.

Her weapon: Her blog.
On Generacion Y, created in 2007, Yoani Sanchez describes her daily life, featuring sun, disillusions, difficulties and dictatorial power. Through scathing texts and significant images, she openly criticizes the government of Havana. With more than 14 million page views and thousands of comments posted on it, Generation Y is a real hit. As Cubans don't have access to the Internet, they obtain the articles via USB keys, CD-ROMs or floppy disks, thus creating social links.

Downsides: These days, Yoani Sanchez is closely watched and is forbidden to leave the country. Access to her site has been blocked on the island.

Recognition: The blogger received the best blog award from Time Magazine and Deutsche Welle, as well as the Maria Moors Cabot journalism prize in 2009. Her blog has since been translated into 15 languages.

Where to read more: On her Generacion Y blog and she's also present on Twitter and Facebook. Sanchez is proof that blogs and the written word can inspire a nation.


Women in Focus Editor
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