Using social media for a cause
The advent of social media was perhaps the best portrayal of a global village. People have been able to interact with people they would never have thought possible. Truths of different parts of the world have been brought forth thanks to social media.
It is through social media that we have seen how humane people all over the world can be. During the Garissa University attack people from all over the world paid tribute to the students who lost their lives. This was once again done most recently with the Paris attacks. Kenyans know all too well how beneficial social media can be. A lot of good has been done for example #1milliforjadudi, #kenyansforkenya, raising funds for Janet Ikua and the children’s cancer ward by Maina Kageni. Dr. Auma Obama in collaboration with StoryMoja want to raise 30 million in three months for a library and will be depending on social media to spread the word.
We have platforms that enable us have over a thousand friends. In as much as they are not our real friends because it is just absurd to have that much, they listen. With such an audience why not steer the conversation to doing good. We all leave a digital footprint every time we send out something to the world. Some potential employers will look for it, investors and other people will have a look at your profile. Deleting tweets and updates does not help much because they can be retrieved. What will the people above make of you before they meet you? Will they even want to meet you? What kind of conversations do you start and what are the consequences of the conversations. This is something most of the Kenyans On Twitter #KOT need to really think about.
When we take part in the campaigns and in crowd funding we change a person’s life. Take for example Jadudi, he would not have have had the surgery were it not for the contributions we gave. The little people sent even the Ksh 50 went a long way to make this possible for him. Having at least contributed to putting a smile on someone’s face by doing good brings more joy than having people laugh at tweets that are mildly cyber bullying. Using social media for good can change a person, village or the entire country as was seen by the Kenyans for Kenya initiative.
People from all over the world will come to social media to get news from the source itself. We have had campaigns that aimed at showing the beautiful culture, people and places of Kenya. This initiative might have changed several people’s perception on Kenya and Africa as a whole. We are the people who will either sell or devalue our nation depending on what conversations we take online.
We have the chance to change the conversation online, to use social media as a tool for good. Have more of willingness to support social causes and have less of #someonetell… kind of hashtags. There are a lot of ills that need to be corrected, a lot of people who need our help but can’t get it one way or another. There are perceptions that foreign people have of Kenya and some Kenyans have about Kenya as well. Using social media as a mirror to society and not just a place to earn followers and likes, then we will be a step closer to doing enough good to change the world.