by Michael Faso, a Junior in the BECA department
I am so tempted to turn this blog entry into a rant about how the Internet and social media have destroyed the beauty of human interaction (which they very well might have), BUT instead, I will illuminate how social media has changed some of our lives for the better.
The usual argument is that social media interactions have separated us from each other, but today I am choosing to discuss how they bring us together. Just as easily as people can alienate themselves via the Internet, a large group of people can band together more quickly than ever before. Strength is in numbers, and thanks to social media tools the PEOPLE are back.
We can connect in many different ways. For example, our wild and crazy friends can plan an event one day before it is executed, post it on Facebook, and have it full of guests without ever saying an actual word to anyone. But beyond the fun gatherings, we can also come together to fight for something, to protest. I believe that the occupy movement wouldn’t have been able to grow as large as it did without social media. The news wasn’t covering it, and one can’t call the whole country to stand up. But, people can post info on their friend’s Facebook wall, and from there the possibilities are endless.
I have chosen to highlight this ability through a series of photos. The photos all capture events (parties, protests, concerts) that use social media to invite and inform attendees. The photos are all film, and were taken by me.
1. A massive skateboard hill bomb that was coordinated completely via Facebook.
2. The Eagle Rock Music Festival in Los Angeles (promoted more online than ever this year and had double the turnout of last year – the biggest one yet)
3. The winter 2009 occupation of SFSU’s business building in response to the fee hikes. The protestors kept in touch with the public and “enemies” via a WordPress blog. The support rapidly grew due to Facebook posts.
4. A cardboard box war at Dolores Park. The game/event was spread virally through Facebook, and surprisingly it was a HUGE turnout.
These four examples should be sufficient proof that social media can lead to larger and more coordinated human interaction. It can be used for pleasure or political purpose. Either way, the power is in OUR hands, and remember strength in numbers!