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??