In Defense of Hashtag Activism

in-defense-hashtag-activism

Let’s begin with this: I am not a hashtag activist.

Although my work appears predominantly online, I am not an instinctive Tweeter. Few of my (admittedly, over-written and under-edited) sentences meet Twitter’s 140-character limit. The recipe for trend-able hashtags – which require an alchemical mixture of pith and cool – does not come naturally. The frenzied pace of hashtag conversations gives me the feeling of whiplash.

The unspoken etiquette of Twitter remains unfamiliar and causes a great deal of anxiety: When should one “at” another person? At what point in an ongoing conversation does one remove a lingering “at” to avoid harassing an unresponsive user? When should one favorite a tweet versus retweet it? How does one know which hashtag of several popular hashtags on a given subject is the right one to use?

Above all: How does one cram the complex issues raised by one’s intersectional identity – a subject that too often fails to fit within entire tomes of text — into the span of 30 words or less?

So, I am not a hashtag activist. I am a blogger (who happens to have a Twitter account).

But, I call bullshit on the prevailing notion that Twitter-based discourse is not – and can never be – legitimate activism.

Continue reading “In Defense of Hashtag Activism”

Reappropriate: The Podcast – Ep. 8 | Twitter Activism as a Decolonial Project

The newest episode of Reappropriate: The Podcast is now available, and it’s one of my favourite episodes yet! In this episode, guest Cayden Mak (@cayden, 18millionrising.org) is back for another discussion on digital activism. In this episode, we specifically tackle the power and peril of Twitter as a tool for social change, and we discuss whether or not the use of Twitter could or should be considered radical and decolonial.

You can view the episode by streaming it through YouTube above or by listening or downloading the audio only version using the mp3 player at the bottom of the post. You can also subscribe to my YouTube channel or subscribe to the podcast in the iTunes Store.

Next episode: I’m excited to announce a joint podcast between myself and the podcasters of the Ladies of the Round Table (@LadiesADRadio), recording next week on October 13, 9pm EST / 6pm PST! We will be talking about feminism, sexism and nerd/gamer culture so please RSVP now!