Having a Voice in the Digital Age

 

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Kimberley Coast  Photo cc by Tourism Western Australia

 

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Photo cc by Jewish Historical Society of the Upper Midwest

 

 

 

 

The Save the Kimberley Facebook page was launched on April 2, 2007 with the intent to bring awareness to people around the world about the devastating results that would surely ensue if a gas pipeline were to be placed under the sea at the Kimberley Coast in Western Australia. This digital activist group first caught my attention because of one of it’s main proponents, John Butler who is the lead vocalist and guitarist for Indy rock band The John Butler Trio. As a huge fan of his music, I only read posts about the Kimberley because it was the “cool thing to do” but quickly realized that this cause was one that I truly supported and wanted to help raise awareness about among my friends as well as the world. With one simple click of the like button and a few more clicks of the share button, I had already done what most would call “my share” to help the cause. Eventually, I would donate money as well as post particular photos as my profile picture in order to draw more awareness.

In this digital age we live in, it is easy to find ourselves caught up in negativity online but if we take the time to participate in more useful ventures, imagine the change we could not only see but actually help to bring about in our world. Children today have much more access to the digital society whether that is a good thing or a bad thing. Many of these children have gained quite a bit of attention by using online forums or platforms as a means of activism. There are a million, if not more, websites, Facebook and Twitter accounts, Instagram accounts, and blogs devoted to special issues that children and teenagers feel passionately about and are working to bring awareness to. The main cause I have found that teens advocate for online is anti-bullying. Since the internet and social media can work as a double-edged sword, this seems like a fitting issue for teens to combat. Teenager Eleni Bernier created an account on Twitter with no real expectations or ideas of how she would use it but eventually decided to use it as a public forum for teens to encourage each other in the face of hardships such as mental illnesses and eating disorders. You can look into Eleni’s inspiring Twitter account by going to @youknowimyouridol.  It is amazing to see the widespread online sense of community amongst these teenagers amidst a society that is often self-absorbed and cruel to others. I think that we still need to monitor what our youth are doing online but for the  sake of peace in the world, I believe our youth just may be onto something.

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7 thoughts on “Having a Voice in the Digital Age

  1. It’s amazing what can happen and how fast things can spread online, in both good and bad ways. The fact that one group of people started a campaign online for a worthy cause and have it spread to so many people is fantastic! I would agree that anti-bullying activism is big. Where it is so easy for people to be negative online, I’m glad to see that youth are realizing that they have a voice and can enact change. Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I totally agree that things can go bad quickly but if we teach digital citizenship and activism in our classrooms I believe children will grow up with a good sense of responsibility and humanitarianism online.

    Like

  3. It is so crazy how things spread and honestly bad news gets around faster than great stories like this. I am so glad to hear that this cause is spreading so quickly! I think it is fantastic and we need more people to have a voice like this to out way the bad that is online. Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

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