Sharing the Slack

Before doing any research on the topic I had no idea what the term slacktivism was.

Photo Credit: colourourcity

As I read the different articles that helped me define what slacktivism was I definitely understand what it means now. I have to admit I am not a fan of the name though. When someone is behind a screen liking, sharing and commenting on different forms of activism online they become a slacktivist.

“Slacking off” is a term that is used when someone was not pulling their weight or doing anything, for that matter. When someone goes onto a social media page and “shares” or “likes” a post it becomes visible to all of their friends who in turn may do the same…or not. What this does is created a train of awareness on the internet. Sharing happens to bring awareness to a broader audience who may not be aware of a cause. For instance the ice bucket challenge for ALS was a huge source of slacktivism that seemed to bring in an enormous amount of money from donation. There did not seem to be any amount of slacking off when it came to participants posting and sharing their videos then donating to the cause.

I know your thinking what about the others that did not donate but shared what did they do?

They helped to raise awareness in a completely different but effective way. Not everyone is from a socioeconomic background that is conducive to donating money to different causes, but they are able to share and like the cause helping to spread the “good word”.

People utilizing the share option on Facebook gets the good majority of our community’s attention. The word spreads faster on social media than on nightly news, newspaper and the radio because people are on it frequently.

I own a lot of 10 Tree clothing, with each purchase 10 trees are planted. I purchased and wore a yellow Livestrong bracelet and wore it until it broke off.  I did the Ice Bucket Challenge. I shared the photo and news story of a missing child on Facebook. I changed my profile picture to have the tint of the flag of France when bombing went on. Do these things make me a Slacktivist?

I certainly do not feel as though I am slacking off when I am doing these things…perhaps there is a better name for people who are raising awareness in unique ways than constantly being on the frontlines…Support is a great thing!

Supportivism might be a better fit! What do you think??


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12 Responses to Sharing the Slack

  1. loganpetlak says:

    Loved the quote: “Not everyone is from a socioeconomic background that is conducive to donating money to different causes”. Great awareness and support to what I was thinking on this topic too… every little bit helps regardless.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Exactly, too often do we analyze whats wrong with what people are doing and I think this might be a strong case for over thinking. As long as someone is doing something positive, such as sharing a post, its a step in a positive direction.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. hmatichuk1 says:

    I think you are bang on about needing to change the word slacktivism to supportivism. That’s a brilliant idea!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I agree with the way you look at the actions of supporting causes.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Erin Benjamin says:

    I’m totally playing devil’s advocate here, but I keep going back to the research that shows that liking/sharing/retweeting often results in less donating to the causes. I agree that not everyone is in a socioeconomic means to donate to causes online but I wonder how many people have it within their means to give and don’t. I know I’ve definitely fallen into this category.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I would agree that it is easier to like/share/retweet. There are probably cases where someone could make a donation and does not or is not active within a movement they support because it is way easier to support online. Definitely an interesting subject! Thanks for the response!!


  5. Pingback: Be A Slacktivist. It’s Better Than Nothing. | Ashley Murray

  6. thiessendallas says:

    I totally agree with this: “What this does is created a train of awareness on the internet. Sharing happens to bring awareness to a broader audience who may not be aware of a cause.” Liking something or retweeting a post helps campaigns like the ALC Ice Bucket Challenge gain momentum, which definitely helps the cause. I know every like or share I get with my learning project helps promote what I am trying to accomplish. Great Post!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, I find it extremely rewarding when our work is shared or a tweet is liked or re-tweeted. We all do not always have the time to chain our selves to trees to save the environment so we do what we can to heighten awareness around different causes.


  7. Nathan Bromm says:

    I agree with you. I do not like the term either. I do understand that some people like and share everything they see so they are not really engaging, but it is still creating the train of awareness that you refer to. I think a better term would be digital activism or social media activism.

    Liked by 1 person

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