Online Activism: Are we becoming ‘slack’?

So with my video for assessment 2 of the folio, I wanted to address the term ‘slacktivism’ and how much negativity it has brought to online activism. The content on my video centralises around the #BlackLivesMatter movement and more specifically the murder of Michael Brown or better known to the social media world ‘Ferguson’. I wanted to make an activist video about social activism because this was something that really annoyed me, the idea that people were finding negatives in other people supporting movements. It aggravates me deeply. I tried my best to be impartial and present ideas from both sides and I think I did that successfully.

I thoroughly enjoyed creating my own content for this video, whilst also seeking out some creative commons licensed images/music to use. Generally when I am forced to make a video for an assessment, I will put my own music because I am lazy or I just want to hear something I enjoy. This wasn’t the case for this assessment as I sought out audio that would support my video and help create the atmosphere I needed. Finding creative commons images wasn’t hard, it was hard deciding which ones would be the most powerful to use. I chose images that I thought would leave an imprint on the viewer and help show just how much these movements mattered to society. My favourite and least favourite part of the video was the ‘skit’ that I made. I really enjoyed being creative and just editing myself talking to myself, however I really didn’t enjoy that damn onion. The taste is still in my mouth.

I did a lot of research on social movements in the weeks leading up to assessment 2. More specifically I looked up the most influential movements of the past 100 years and compared how much #BlackLivesMatter impacted society and what the similarities between the movements were. Getting deep into all of the details of #BlackLivesMatter and seeing that academics thought of it really helped to provide an educational backbone to my video. I thought that the statistics that I gathered showed an immense amount of importance and that they would strengthen my argument that ‘slacktivism’ shouldn’t even be a term, even more.

I had quite a few challenges during this process. The one’s that stand out the most were technical issues with the program I was using, my laptop and the camera. It just seemed to all be working against me but I was determined to get this video finished. I learnt just how important it is to back-up work, even if you necessarily do nothing wrong, your equipment could turn around and cause many issues. I learnt to try and be patient when things are going wrong and to organise myself a hell of a lot better. But when it comes to the content of the video, the biggest issue I faced was how I would go about presenting what I am talking about, considering I am a white person and everything I am talking about is related to the mistreatment of black people. I found myself getting quite emotional when reading into these stories and it all became so apparent when the attacks on Manchester happened this week, it kind of made me feel like we can’t escape all these horrific things.

Overall the assessment really educated me on a lot and was an anxiety-filling experience.

 

My broader alc203-related online activity:

My broader online activity has been quite poor this semester. It started promising but once I realised how much I was dealing with, I knew I wouldn’t be able to keep it up. I found it quite funny though that when I had to be active on social media for a class, I couldn’t do it, but when I don’t have to be conscious about it, I do it non-stop. I did make some really good friends this semester and hopefully will continue to be friends with them. I think I will be more active in this unit hashtag once the semester is over, how successful of me.

 

 

References

 

Day, E. 2015. #BlackLivesMatter the birth of a new civil rights matter. The Guardian.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/jul/19/blacklivesmatter-birth-civil-rights-movement

 

Demby, G. 2016. Combing through 41 Million tweets to see how Black Lives Matter exploded. Code Switch: Race and Identity, remixed.

http://www.npr.org/sections/codeswitch/2016/03/02/468704888/combing-through-41-million-tweets-to-show-how-blacklivesmatter-exploded

 

Feldman, B. 2016. Here’s what you can learn from 40 million Black Lives Matter tweets. NY Mag.

http://nymag.com/selectall/2016/02/what-researchers-learned-from-black-lives-matter.html

 

Hitlin, P and Anderson, M. 2016. The hashtag #BlackLivesMatter emerges: Social activism on twitter. Pew Research Centre.

http://www.pewinternet.org/2016/08/15/the-hashtag-blacklivesmatter-emerges-social-activism-on-twitter/

 

Khan-Ibarra, S. 2014. The case for Social Media and Hashtag Activism. The Huffington Post.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/sabina-khanibarra/the-case-for-social-media_b_6149974.html

 

Tucker, J. 2014. Tweeting Ferguson: How Social Media can (and cannot) facilitate protest. The Washington Post.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2014/11/25/tweeting-ferguson-how-social-media-can-and-can-not-facilitate-protest/?utm_term=.b7d05a7c5148

 

“Sad Piano track” – Letting Go by HookSounds

<a href=”http://www.hooksounds.com”>HookSounds Music</a>

 

MUSIC:
Artist: Nicolai Heidlas
Title: Futuristic Technology

Download the song here:

www.dropbox.com/s/4l9ijykdrh3c5ov…chnology.mp3?dl=1

 

 

‘Black Lives Matter’ by Johnny Silvercloud available at his flickr. CC license.

 

‘Black lives matter’ by Peter Burka, available at his flickr. CC license.

 

‘ferguson dc protest 112514 1’ by Neil Cooler, available at his flickr. CC license.

 

‘ferguson dc protest 112514 17’ by Neil Cooler, available at his flickr. CC license.

 

‘Ferguson protest in Palo Alto: Stanford Students Shut It Down’ by Paul George, available at his flickr. CC license.

 

‘ferguson dc protest 112514 18’ by Neil Cooler, available at his flickr. CC license.

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