As more and more Kenyans go online and as Creative Writers embrace social media as a platform fortheir writing, the need to be aware of the treacherous side of the Internet is necessary.
There are more benefits than vulnerabilities of a young creative writer having a blog in their questto; publish, get feedback, grow in writing and share. However, it is also important for every Creativewriter to know that, whatever they write is their creation and thus needs to be protected andacknowledged by anyone who comes across it.
For a long time, Creative Writers and even Bloggers in general have been affected by plagiarism;this is when someone copies part of or the whole article/post/story/poem that was your originalcreation and uses it without 1) Acknowledging you and 2) Seeking consent to copy and use itelsewhere.
One of our guest speakers, who also happens to be among the first bloggers in Kenya has been avictim of Plagiarism. This brought to light the issue of, what laws are in place to protect bloggers?How does a blogger approach the party that has plagiarised their work (through a lawyer or settleout of court), what happens when the party that copied a bloggers work uses it and makes moneyout of it? To bring this closer home. What should a creative writer who has posted their poems ontheir blog do when he discovers that his works are appearing in a publication by a publishing housethat he has never contacted?
This last scenario did happen to various Kenyan Poets including myself.Creative writers need to know what legal recourse they can seek when faced with copyrightinfringement or plagiarism. There is also a need to know the measures to put in place to ensure thatone is covered legally online e.g. Indicating that copyrights to a story or poem are reserved or use ofcreative commons widgets.POWO July seeks to provide a forum where Creative Writers can get to learn all the legal terms,differentiate them, ask questions, seek free legal counsel as well as discuss with other writers.
We have invited 3 Lawyers; Collins Mbalo who is also a blogger at Nairobian Perspective. SarahAmoit, an advocate at the High Court and Karimi Wandiri who is also a band member and an eventorganiser behind the Kinanda Festival monthly events.
The forum will be a panel discussion with as much involvement with the audience as possible. We will also be joined by one of Nairobi’s sterling female poets, Ngwatilo Mawiyoo who recently performed at the Harare International Festival in Zimbabwe as well as at the Poetry Africa Festival in South Africa. She is currently pursuing the fusion of Poetry and Music through her Puesic Project.
Join us on 16th July at the iHub from 11am. To sign up, CLICK HERE.