June 19, 2014 / By Dicomm News
No campaign has captivated the world’s attention and demonstrated the scope and reach of social media more than the #BringBackOurGirls campaign. In less than a week, this event which had generally been more or less ignored by the responsible government, shot straight to number 1 world priority. But for all the hashtagging and headscarf wearing we’ve done this past month, do we really know or understand the origins or meaning of what could be the most publicized event of the year.
#BringBackOurGirls , an outcry to the Nigerian government to pay heed to the plight of the Chibok schoolgirls and their parents was first tweeted by Nigerian lawyer Ibrahim M. Abdullah on the 23rd of April 2014. Amazingly before this tweet, the girls had been missing for over a week, having been kidnapped in the night on April 14; and Mr. Abdullah fed up with his government’s response or lack thereof fired off his tweet. Little did he know that he was about to start a global movement where the Chibok girls’ kidnapping would become one of the most looked up topics on any news sites, with the entire world waiting for updates.
Make no mistake, this is not the first time Boko Haram has kidnapped people but it is the first time it has reached such an audience and caused worldwide outrage. In this situation we saw the global power of social media unleashed to bring out issues and spread information. Since the 23rd of April more has been known, done and said about this situation. We have seen world leaders, celebrities, sports personalities and just about everyone join in this movement.
Whether or not social media is the world’s conscience in action, I don’t know. However, for all the arguments for and against it, social media is here to stay, and goodbye to whoever wants to hide behind a finger.
And that my friend is the power of social media.