Just discovered the past existence of Afronet as I read Black software from Charlton D.McIlwain.
This is crazy I thought I knew about BBS I thought it was only one of those artsy fancy outdated topics. AFRONET BBS List was not notified in any of the fancy artsy events I attended up to now. This is unfortunately very significant of existing power relations.
It also somehow is significant of the capacities of undermined social groups to organize and finding out the extensive existence of invisiblised networks somehow comforts me in the necessity of an endeavor to organize extensively at the community level and how this can change actual situation.
Looking at those stories help us build confidence and knowledge of how to continue the work, afro descendant, feminists and other minorised social groups understand this as they always worked into sharing their stories.
“And, more difficult to pin down, why have histories of the internet not included these networks? […] they also, sometimes explicitly and other times implicitly, invite us to ask ourselves what power structures have been at work to gloss over or elide these alternative networks? What would have, and could still be, possible if things were otherwise? […] What if, in our recuperation of defunct or obsolete networks, we focused on their disconnections, disruptions, and failures?”
"Thus, these alternative networks and the infrastructures that support them are explicitly activist and therefore they are not just neat artifacts from the past – they are systems for information exchange, whether living or obsolete, that are part of (and sometimes even prop up) entire “life-worlds.” "
Source: Excavating Future Histories of the Internet: AfroNet | Newsletter | Telegraph – loriemerson