Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Pen-Congress day two in Reykjavik

 Most people know the tedious necessity of plenary meetings when one's organization has to take care of internal affairs. Yes it was long, but not boring. PEN, thanks to a generous donor, has been able to professionalize and has attracted some brilliant, really motivated young people with various skills and expertises. Sadly many members passed away and they were honored and fondly remembered. The professional way of working sees to it that the Universal periodic Review of Countries at the UN is fed with all the information PEN has about these countries and it really makes a difference and yes, sometimes it gets ugly then at the UN...

Since finances are always a problem for the PEN centers an impromptu meeting was held by the 'European Network' to exchange ideas about fund raising. David Van Reybrouck, our President of PEN- Flanders and born organizer, lead the meeting in an open, easy way by asking some of the relevant questions and  seeing to it that every one who wanted to contribute something to the discussion could do so...

And this wonderful sight to walk into after the meeting, washes away our fatigue. Sometimes the sky is gray and filled with drizzle seemingly just folding into the ocean.

And yes, freedom of expression is challenged on the Internet. We know our mails have been read. Maybe it is an education for those who have that job. Yet it also means we have to protect the whistle-blowers... they are our only access to the truth. Did you know that Americans can challenge their government for invading their privacy and for being spied on, but that foreigners cannot?

No comments:

Post a Comment