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Watching the number of people joining our new online campaign edge ever closer to 10,000 just ahead of the official launch in Birmingham this morning took me back to the days when similar excitement could be had by tuning in to Blue Peter to see if the `totaliser would reveal the programme had hit its appeal target.

Innocent days those - before Blue Peters image was sullied by scandals like that over the naming of Cookie the Cat.The 1979 appeal for victims of the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia even gave me an insight into human rights.

But if I was getting too old for Blue Peter in 1979 (I was 14) then Im sure todays young teenagers will already have migrated to Facebook, Bebo, MySpace and the like. Which takes me back to our new campaign, Unsubscribe.

The campaign will involve extensive human rights campaigning online, including among these social media. The new initiative is encouraging people who are opposed to terrorism and human rights abuses in the War on Terror to do what Internet users do with unwanted emails - to Unsubscribe. Instead, the Amnesty campaign is calling for a mobilisation behind a defence of human rights values.

Unsubscribe is the first Amnesty campaign to thoroughly harness the power of online activism - the Web 2.0 generation. Weve always been about mobilising people and giving them the means to take action against injustice. Now social networks mean we can talk to a new generation.

Amnesty was one of the first organisations to speak out against Guantánamo Bay - were now taking the same message into the world of social media like Bebo , Facebook and MySpace. Exciting stuff.

Happily we hit 10,000 before Sky News, the Press Association, the Birmingham Mail and various local radio stations arrived for the launch but we want tens of thousands more people to Unsubscribe. So, go on - what are you waiting for?

Be seeing you.

About Amnesty UK Blogs
Our blogs are written by Amnesty International staff, volunteers and other interested individuals, to encourage debate around human rights issues. They do not necessarily represent the views of Amnesty International.
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