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The African Silver Surfer Over 50 Bloggers
William Jackson, M.Ed.
Sponsor of WordCamp Entebbe, Uganda,
WordCamp Lagos, Nigeria
The Silver Surfers of the digital age are growing at a tremendous rate
in Africa. Africans over 50 years of age are creating Facebook profiles,
they are Micro-blogging on Twitter, Instagramming their photos, creating
YouTube channels and just a little bit of SnapChat.
Silver Surfers are online actively engaged across the blogosphere sharing their experiences, knowledge, stories, wisdom and even humor.
They are talking about their lives in the present and the past, they are
talking about sex, relationships, gout, childcare as grandparents and
even taking care of their adult children as these children deal with
unemployment and social challenges that have economic challenges
and the political situations in their nations.
Technology is providing a new ability and platform to voice their
ideas, opinions and they are growing in influence.
African Bloggers over 50 are talking about politics, economics and
starting businesses. They are into cell phone usage that is transforming
the face of Social Media on the continent of Africa.
Digital communication is the way they stay connected to the world
and with family and friends. The Internet contains continuous developing
platforms for those 50 years and older to digitally travel locally,
nationally and internationally.
The challenges of obtaining a Passport can be overcome by hopping
on the Internet to visit local, national and international sites. Travel
is free, in the comfort of a residence and portable when done on
cell phones and tablets.
Silvers in Africa are learning that in order to stay connected to their
grandchildren they need to learn now to connect with them to see
what their children’s children are up to online. Using Apps are the
tools of choice to interact and be engaging.
Celebrating cultural events, special occasions, community events
and even attending political rallies can be done online and the ability
to contribute to the discussions to share ideas and opinions to a large
mass of people.
Chinua Achebe once said about writing, my weapon for change is
literature. Africans have a weapon that is magnified by the reach
Social Media has and Technology provides.
Using applications that allow Face to Face communication, video
recording, and audio Chat helps in keeping connected and aware
as each generation gets older and older. Age does not stop discovery,
creativity, exploration and being curious. Age embraces the quest
of more knowledge and this keeps the brain youthful, creative and
When cars are connected with Wifi, restaurants have free access and
even connectivity is available in bathrooms being connected is not a
challenge. Silver Surfers in Africa are asking several questions when
they go traveling; Where are the restrooms and what is the Wifi code?
Silver Surfers are building their own networks that create growing
communities and societies that are digital. Learning the acronyms
of PLC Professional Learning Communities and building PLN
Professional Learning Networks. African over 50 are becoming
activists in their nations, sharing their opinions passions and
encouraging change. I think knowing one’s history leads one to
act in a more enlightened fashion. I cannot imagine how knowing
one’s history would not urge one to be an activist.
John Hope Franklin has stated.
Activism begins with a passion for change, seeing a wrong that
needs to be corrected and inspiring people.
William Jackson 57 and Aida Correa 51 speak at conferences at
WordCamp internationally in Central America and Canada. Being
past the half century mark is not a deterrent to learning and growth.
Sharing content, wisdom and experiences to younger
The increased presence of Silver Surfers that are Bloggers,
PodCasters, Instagrammers, VBloggers, MicroBloggers and the
diversity of content creators is represented by those that are
50 years and over seen at WordCamp and other technology
The dictionary defines Silver Surfers as a noun, an elderly person
who is a regular or enthusiastic Internet user. The word elderly
will be argued because those Silvers are determined in their quest
to show seniors are growing influencers. William and Aida are
Bloggers and Content Creators, showing that their knowledge
does make a difference in their communities.
The dynamics are changing with dictionaries defining the Silver
Surfers influence in an age of digital transformation and growth.
As seniors enter into the Silver years of their lives they are a
wealth of knowledge, wisdom and resources that are untapped
for younger generations.
The Internet and associated tools helps to connect families with
Silver parents, grandparents and other family members. Keeping
hearts and minds active, engaged and youthful. When the mind is
youthful the spirit and body follow, even if joints are touched
The integration of smart, intelligent, intuitive, comprehensive and
AI elements benefits Silvers using technology.
Youth, teens, young adults and Silver Surfers are starting a new
era in collaboration and connections with tech as the bridge
between generations and diversity is crossed.
Age was respected among his people, but achievement was
revered. As the elders said, if a child washed his hands he could
eat with kings as stated by Chinua Achebe in his book Things Fall Apart.