News, views and commentary from the telecoms sector across emerging markets and developing countries worldwide

Thursday, 17 September 2009

DevelopingTelecomsWatch - age notwithstanding, pleased to be a part of

I'd like to think that I approach everything I do with a reasonable degree of professionalism. Whether it's accurate to describe myself as a young professional, though, is open to question. While I do still feel pretty youthful, it seems that almost half of the thrusting young go-getters who visit feel that a dusty old geezer like your humble scribe is far too long in the tooth to be known as a young professional. is a fast-growing blog aggregator, currently over 14,000+ articles strong. The site's creator describes it as the place for young professionals to find up to the minute news and information that matters. This is achieved by aggregating blogs - 200+ sites are checked automatically every 10 minutes for updated articles, to which links are posted.

On one hand, the blogs added to the site are very diverse in terms of the topics they cover - banking, personal finance, investments, career advice and new media news are among the fields I've seen discussed. On the other hand, the bloggers who have added their sites seem to be less diverse in terms of where in the world they are located. My observation is that, at present, voices from North America are by far the most numerous. Europeans like myself are a rarer breed at YPBLOGS - and bloggers from developing countries and emerging markets worldwide seem to be rarer still.

I'd like to see this rectified, not least because, as this blog often makes clear, innovative technologies, services and business models are being incubated all over the world - inventiveness is certainly not the sole preserve of those of us living in the most developed economies and the most affluent societies. In the telecoms space, it is in developing countries such as Kenya that bleeding-edge mobile financial services solutions are being developed and refined. That country is even home to the 18-year old mobile services entrepreneur who has developed an SMS-based solution which enables car owners to keep track of their vehicles, offering a defence against theft.

YPBLOGS is a useful arena in which to absorb the ideas of younger bloggers, thinkers and innovators. I feel, however, that this community would be even richer were it to be joined by innovative writers from developing countries. I would therefore urge the many readers of DevelopingTelecomsWatch who hail from Africa, Asia and Latin America to add their voices to the conversations aggregated at - and don't be put off if you're over thirty.

Visitors to were asked: What is the age limit for considering a person a "young professional"? The most common response (49% of respondents so far) was 'under 30'. Well, I don't fit in there - but this has not deterred me from taking advantage of the site or from enjoying the interesting material it aggregates.

So I call for an invasion of the over-30s and from developing countries. We can make YPBLOGS even better.

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