Women in technology gathered at Somerset House recently to discuss how women are making the web work for them.
The event showcased the role of women in mentoring and boosting other females’ digital skills, with guests including fashion blogger Bip Ling and Shadow Media Minister, MP Helen Goodman.
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Web for Everyone is a campaign to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the web, and was inspired by Tim Berners-Lee’s vision that the web should be "for everyone".
Managing director of Free:Formers and event host, Emma Cerrone, said: “The constant discussion about the lack of women in technology only tells half the story.
“We need to stop talking about the barriers, issues and lack of women and start talking about those that have built their personal and professional lives on the web – a discussion about barriers isn’t inspiring – it’s limiting.”
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Bip Ling, fashion blogger and model, who attended the event, said: “The internet has been a great platform for me to share my ideas, especially having a blog. I have designed my blog layout to reflect my character.
“You can learn about me anywhere in the world by just going on to bipling.com. It's like my scrapbook being open to the public. I would love to learn how to do more on the Web, I have so many ideas to change up the look of my blog, but I just don't know how to!”
The event also included a series of workshops to teach attendees new web skills on how to grow their online presence on social media and information about online security.
The workshops were led by female Free:Formers trainers. Fiona Timba is a Free:Formers trainer who led one of the sessions.
She said: “Half of the people I train are women, who need digital skills just as much as men for work and family life.
"When I started my business I wish I had known what I know now about the web; where to find support from the online community; the best open source software; how easy coding can be if you learn the right shortcuts.
“I want to share my experiences with other women so they realise they can also learn how to make the web themselves, saving time and money. We need to inspire each other, share our stories and focus on technology as a tool for personal or professional success.”