Thursday, March 15, 2012

The (Counter) Revolution Will be Twittered

On the ironically-titled blog Africa is a Country, Elliot Ross writes that "in the future we’ll have to get used to crowdsourced foreign policy that will come with dollops of the white man’s burden and most likely won and lost in popularity contests on social media." 

His The #Kony2012 show post was originally entitled "Phony, risible children." He sees the Kony 2012 phenomenon as indicative of something broader, as a "study of a bunch of vain and ignorant young people who can think and feel only in cliches and appear to be laboring under the notion that Mark Zuckerberg invented both compassion and democracy for them sometime around 2004."

 As with many articles on this subject, Ross both encourages and invites scrutiny. That is, he calls on readers to fact-check what they are seeing elsewhere, but his assertions regarding the International Criminal Court themselves raise doubts.

His article is a reminder that activists and educators who use social media must be careful not to be used by them. The discussion continues on the same blog with Megan Elliot's post entitled, Jeffrey Gettleman's continent, in which she warns against "guilt-based aggression."

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