Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Environmental Activism and Social Media

The failure of governments to make progress on climate change is leading climate campaigners to renew their focus on social media to get people involved in the push for carbon emission controls.

The Global Work Party organized by 350.org is at the forefront of a successful new approach to social change. The 10/10/10 event is a prime example of the new social movement powered by the extraordinary reach of the Web. The proliferation of increasingly powerful mobile technologies have radically increased the reach and immediacy of social advocacy.

The unprecedented success of 350.org's "International Day of Climate Action" on October 24th 2009, was eclipsed only by this year's 10/10/10 Global Work Party event. Thanks to digital media like chat, text messaging, and social networks, the 350.org team mobilized over 7000 actions in 188 countries this year.

Some have called this reliance on accessible online tools "open source" activism. The use of new media is building an enduring climate constituency.

Activists are downloading online toolkits for decentralized events and using the power of social media to push for greater climate protection. Coordinated online outreach has made the immense scale of the Global Work Party possible.

Thanks to social media, climate activists are cultivating resources that are mobilizing people in ways that are transforming our cultures and our civilizations.

Climate activists are up against the immense resources of the fossil fuel industry and their powerful propaganda machines. While environmental groups cannot outspend or outmaneuver the fossil fuel industry, social media is leveling the playing field and democratizing the debate.


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