Social Media, an interactive platform made available to people through various websites and applications in order to create or share anything regarding any subject in particular, especially Twitter has established a proven network across the globe. This makes Twitter one of the most appropriate tool to effectively fight for social cause. Neither organizing nor participating is now supposed to be formal but deficiency of leadership does affect usability of Twitter simultaneously. Through the articles “SMALL CHANGE – why revolution will not be tweeted” by Malcolm Gladwell and “THE MATTER OF BLACK LIVES – a new kind of movement found its moment. What will it’s future be?” by Jelani Cobb, Gladwell suggests the process of transition of activism from a traditional manner to the advanced one where social networking engaged itself crucially.
Alternatively Cobb showcase’s how campaigns for social issues were revolving around social media to gain momentum. Both Gladwell and Cobb do share one common outlook that public motions are now more inclined towards digital support from internationally recognized mediums like Twitter, similarly involvement of users on large scale creates room for numerous issues to raised and solved. A rights issue that appeared unresolvable then, now got a livelihood. Twitter has improvised engagement among people universally and as an outcome it has proven itself to be worthy for social organizations worldwide but absence of authority has its shortcomings as well.
This new approach through internet is truly acceptable as any individual from any spot of the world could be a part of an issue which seems appealing to him/her. On a global scale, organizations can manage a campaign even without having any physical meetings and solutions can be proposed for any matter as well. Even getting vocal about completely new concern is no hassle as receiving support for justified problem is effortless due to the fact that Twitter is accessible by millions of users comprehensively. Similarly referred by Cobb, ”Opal Tometi, a writer and immigration rights organizer in Brooklyn, whom Garza met at a conference in 2012, offered to build a social media platform, on Facebook and Twitter, where activists could connect with each other”(4), as uniting with people who have alike philosophy is easier on Twitter.
Cobb tries to highlight that online approaches are turning out to be more appropriate for raising a voice and coming up with respective resolution. By exercising this method, awareness among numerous active users globally on Twitter spreads rapidly and later assistance in any form can be received. And as a result cooperating among these online comrades becomes extremely uncomplicated to settle a public cause. As Gladwell refers, ““Without Twitter the people of Iran would not have felt empowered and confident to stand up for freedom and democracy,” Mark Pfeifle, a former national-security adviser, later wrote, calling for Twitter to be nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize”(2).
Here Iran got more than enough encouragement from Twitter users all over the planet, for something very crucial and significant like freedom and ironically Iran’s online twitter participation was comparatively less. This is what happens when a movement gets widespread across web, mass associations do not have to thrive for aid instead timely benevolence shows up for them .Global backing was offered to a country fighting for independence via online platform like twitter, what bigger example can be presented to evidently uphold the fact that virtual connects through Twitter is pertinent for settling a social change.
But admittedly, the much needed leadership is missing which is essential in many aspects for fighting against a social norm. Twitter or any other social platform requires a control that can drive a movement and shape it for betterment. This absent authority makes an online public campaign less effective and inefficient. The guidelines are missing which leads to undisciplined methodology and further true potential of means like Twitter end up being unutilized. The decentralized arrangement steer these web applications without any authorization as majority takes decision rather than some superior mentor.
Cobb states that, , “Like the Occupy movement, it eschews hierarchy and centralized leadership, and its members have not infrequently been at odds with older civil-rights leaders and with the Obama Administration—as well as with one another”(1). Twitter public movements avert from their prime concern and motto as guidance is unavailable when needed. And later this motion on twitter, or any such media, does not get evaluated or checked whether the development is positive or negative.
Correspondingly Gladwell also has similar philosophy, “Because networks don’t have a centralized leadership structure and clear lines of authority, they have real difficulty reaching consensus and setting goals”(9), as revolution on new sources do not have drawn path to follow and distractions are too frequent due to no protocols made by organizer or influencer on internet. Functionality of platforms like Twitter get negative impact. And later these motions’ are lead to a disagreement as picture is unclear about the web activities going on within an association. If planning and implementation of protocols is initiated by someone who is ready to take charge of organization on twitter, objectives of any proposal can be fulfilled timely.
As Gladwell and Cobb convey parallel meaning here, suggestive that chaotic composition of such networks is a major setback acting as a hurdle for social media movements to come up with superior outcomes. These references are on point as the scope of improvisation can be clearly noticed. But still the kind of optimistic modernization that Twitter has brought is noteworthy because of which disadvantages like no leadership still seems a practical compromise.
Extensive public reachability worldwide keeps the new form of promoting change in rights and protocols still active through new approach of social media. Each and every critical cause does get support through twitter as millions of users are active all the time. Smooth transition of medium for organizing a movement was only possible if benefits of online approach were adequate and at the same time flaws were tolerable to use them for extended period. Many disadvantages have been showcased by many capable people but still online activism is alive due to the success that it has offered.
The situation of feeling helpless has vanished to a certain level due to the never ending enthusiasm of socialization through internet. The operational capability of twitter that was initially questioned got proven gradually. Connection with people of similar mindset is now feasible universally. Although someone in one continent might not have to do anything with protest going on in other continent but their humanity can reach out to them through social modes on internet which would not have been possible for ages if one did not overcome the resistance of change.
Like everything that exists in universe, this new form does have demerits but the amount of welfare that mankind has gained in invaluable. Twitter’s worldwide convenience has bettered the unity within humans to challenge any authority for improvement. The scope of improvement is defined now and the progress seems tremendous on social platforms as not only helping someone financially or raising funds for a cause is doable but also petitions are nowadays created and submitted through these means.
Optimistically emerging utilities like this make Twitter even more appropriate to use it for a larger motif. The other great aspect is that, new format of supporting someone is accepted by majority people globally without any hesitation which shows that along with methodology, philosophy has also changed with time. Twitter or any such application is ideal for scenarios like shaping a movement as much needed support system is already established. The task that seemed unachievable once is now doable even without physical dispute, all credit has to be given to modern means like Twitter.