This question really gets to the heart of what social media does, and strives to do. After thinking about the question, I realized my answer is a little bit of a copout, but what I feel is right nevertheless. I believe that social media creates an avenue to promote public events, such as protests or sit-ins but also allows people to feel like they’re getting into the movement, without lifting more than a finger.
I have several friends who feel like they’re very involved in political and social events because of their connection through social media, but when you take a closer look, they’ve really done nothing to further the movement.
Alternatively, I also have friends who have been very much a part of social media, and used it to their advantage to further a cause they’re connected with. Whether it’s getting updates to their phones or reading the site’s twitter feed, they’ve used these connections to connect themselves to the cause and go out an get involved.
Whether or not people choose to get involved or just keep track, events are now getting an unbelievable amount of “coverage” from citizen journalists. Free publicity is good publicity, isn’t it?
Part III - Question 2
Question 2 focuses on whether or how political deliberation in the social media makes a “call to action” in the real world.
Although we haven’t looked closely at the Tea Party or Occupy Wall Street, we have included references to them where useful. These are both…
I believe you are completely in the right here. With the innovation of faceless opinions and creative quirks regarding social media and politics, it almost seems sad that there are a large amount of people who feel up to date and involved with what is going on currently. Although I feel like it is sad, I too fall into this category form time to time. For instance, with the Occupy movement, for those of us far from the reaches of Wall Street, it was a spring board for us to begin our own movements. With the massive amount of Occupy movements coming up around the country and the world, it has allowed us who are closer to these movements, to get involved. Personally, I believe it is solely in the user to take a stand and learn what they need to at first, but if they truly don’t feel associated with the material and the cause they have learned about, to step back and let the professionals take the lead. Just because someone posts a picture claiming to be the 99%, doesn’t mean they are willing to help the movement.