I’m infamous for constantly scrolling through social media on my phone. Even if I’m not looking through a feed, I’m glancing at my lock screen to see if I’ve gotten any notifications since the last time I checked, which most likely was two minutes ago.
Being connected to the outside world is ridiculously easy now. You don’t even have to open your phone; you can get breaking news notifications right on your lock screen.
Social media has had a big hand, especially recently, in informing people about political and social issues. Every time I go on Twitter or Facebook, someone is taking a stand on what they believe in, or sharing posts, pictures or videos of something that’s going on around the world.
Using social media to promote social justice seems to be a rising trend. Whether it’s bringing awareness to a cause, sharing different perspectives or a rant on a Facebook post, people are trying to be heard.
While social media is not always used for good and, a lot of the time, can be a toxic place, it has been a vital part in sparking protests around the globe.
Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat have all been tools in gaining supporters for movements, and they have provided rallying cries to do more. Facebook invites and hashtags have also aided in widespread knowledge of protests.
The internet has also been a major factor in letting people know if a protest is starting to turn violent, or letting other protestors know where violence is already occurring. This happened especially with the Ferguson protests.
Social media isn’t just necessary in informing people where and when to meet for a protest, but also for motivating those who might be interested in the movement as well.
According to the Washington Post, social media can help trigger feelings of group identity and feelings of injustice, which can encourage people to join protests.
Social media is a great tool for showing solidarity and offering up different perspectives, as long as it remains respectful from both sides. It can be used as a motivating source for activism and spreads awareness.
Social media needs to be used more for promoting action and not a place where people just talk and make no moves to create a difference.
For example, the Women’s March gained a huge following through social media, and there ended up being Women’s Marches all over the globe.
Social media had a positive influence and more support than opposition.
In an NPR interview, Rashad Robinson says that our power from social media and online advocacy is the ability to take action.
Many people prefer to post on social media instead of actually doing something to make a change. Generating change can be as easy as changing your attitude about a certain topic.
The next step after posting on social media about how we need change is to get out and actually try to see what you can do to help.