Alex Ross dedicates herself to writing and creative painting. She writes about the little beauties and the great evil of everyday life. She collaborates with the electronic magazine Neue Debatte and participated in the European Humanist Forum, recently held in Madrid, as a speaker in the “Independent Journalism and Social Activism” round table.

EHF2018: What is the role of independent media?

Alex Ross: One of the functions of alternative media is to give young people the opportunity to publish their work, to allow them to explain their own version, their story. In my personal case, I didn’t have the opportunity to publish my own work, so I decided to do it on my own in 2016. The moment I connected to an alternative digital medium, opportunities opened up for my young voice to be heard. It is very difficult for young people to publish, to exhibit, to make their productions visible, to make their way. We’re constantly being reduced to our age, which for us means  that people think we have nothing to say, because we haven’t experienced anything yet and therefore there’s nothing in us. With alternative media it becomes easier and I have noticed that points of contact are available.

Can citizens generate information and set the media agenda?

We need media in which power is shared among people, not media in which power is held by a few families. We need to allow readers to have a say in the issues we need to publish, so that power is shared among many people and not concentrated in a few.

In relation to the theme of this forum: “What unites us” How can we improve our joint work with the media and social movements?

We need opportunities like this weekend, for example to meet, to connect, to continue this work together. We must not listen to those who tell us to stay out of it! That’s all for nothing! On the contrary, we must listen to our own inner voice. That voice that says to you: “Take the opportunity! Even if it’s a risk, I want to try.” That voice that says to you: “Don’t be afraid, believe in yourself, in your inner voice and try!”