Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Blog U: Getting Active Online - Social Networking

Getting Active Online (Part 1)

In an increasingly wired culture, you probably find yourself spending more and more time online – for work, for fun, for shopping, and more. Wouldn’t it be great if you could effortlessly transform some of that time into powerful activism? These simple steps listed below will help you to become an activist on the internet – the easy way.

Join a SOCIAL NETWORKING website.

Social networking websites allow you to quickly and easily connect with individuals who share similar interests. Because of their rhizomatic nature, these websites facilitate strongly networked collaborations between people who may have never otherwise connected because of geographical or other constraints.

Step 1: Find the social networking website that is right for you.

Popular Social Networking Websites:
-Facebook
-MySpace
-LinkedIn
-Second Life

Good News: Feeling overwhelmed by the number invitations to join these websites that you receive? Google is working on streamlining the online social experience with Open Social.

Step 2: Use your new network to connect with individuals doing similar work, to support causes you believe in, or to raise awareness about important issues.

Organizing Activism: Ms. Magazine (Winter 2008) recently reported on “an underground movement” of individuals who organized via Facebook to protest sexist advertising in the tube system by placing stickers with messages on them has gained national attention in the United Kingdom. Increasingly, off-line activism is being organized online.

Find Your Cause: Facebook allows users to create “Causes” around specific issues and to fundraise for specific non-profit organizations. Many individuals and organizations report success in social networking-based fundraising.

Crossposted.


Please note that as my M.A. thesis project is complete, the George Washington University is no longer overseeing research conducted in conjunction with this blog (effective June 2007 to present). The Informed Consent Materials created while this blog was under GWU's IRB oversight are still available for your information and the principles outlined in them are still being used as a general guide for my continued work.