When Mozilla built Webmaker for Android, we had countries like Bangladesh in mind — mobile-first regions where individuals are eager to create original content, but might lack the right tools. And so the Mozilla Bangladesh community was indispensable in designing Webmaker. Volunteers provided insight, feedback, ideas and more all throughout the development process.
Bangladesh continues to play an equally important role beyond development. Creating Webmaker was only half the equation; sharing it with users across Bangladesh was the second half. And Mozillians in Dhaka, Sylhet and other cities have done an amazing job sharing Webmaker with their communities.
Take, for example, Mozillian Mijanur Rahman Rayhan. Mijanur wears many hats at Mozilla — he’s a Firefox Student Ambassador (FSA), Local Mozilla community leader of Sylhet, Webmaker mentor and Club founder. And over the past few months, Mijanur has helped Webmaker thrive in Bangladesh. On a recent Friday in September, Mijanur and other Mozillians attended a major event in Sylhet for Bangladesh Internet Week. The group set up a Webmaker kiosk, eager to introduce the app to the world.
“We demonstrated the log in process, features to make projects and the techniques of how to share projects on social websites,” Mijanur explains in a blog post.
It was a busy day. “From the very beginning, our kiosk was almost full every minute,” Mijanur says. “We had five volunteers for demonstration, and I don’t remember if I saw them sitting or being idle for a single minute.” Mijanur and the others ended up introducing Webmaker and its mission to about 300 people — 100 of which downloaded the app on the spot.
Mijanur isn’t alone. Atique Ahmed Ziad is a longtime Mozillian based in Dhaka who has also made tremendous contributions to the Webmaker launch. Earlier this month, Atique hosted a Webmaker event at Notre Dame College in Dhaka. Here, dozens of people came together to learn about Webmaker. Users built a range of projects in both English and Bengali: fan pages for favorite athletes and cricket teams, recycling tips, photography portfolios, study guides, science explainers and more. (To view additional Webmaker projects created at Atique’s event, click here.)
“It was a great experience for me to teach people to create the Web by us and for us,” Atique says. “I must say I enjoyed the event and people’s interest in Webmaker.”
Mijanur and Atique are two of the many talented Mozillians in Bangladesh who are sharing Webmaker and teaching web literacy. Alone, these volunteers make a positive impact in their communities. Together, they’re making a difference country-wide. Last month, from Sept. 5-11, was Bangladesh Internet Week, a nation-wide initiative that sought to bring 10 million citizens onto the Web. During these seven days, Mozillians across Bangladesh brought Webmaker to the forefront of the conversation. Important topics like web literacy, open source and hands-on learning became centerpieces.
There are more Webmaker events planned in Bangladesh, and we’re looking forward to them. Mozilla thanks all our community members in Bangladesh for their outstanding work!