What’s the best form of social media to use to start a revolution? According to Khalid Albaih it’s all of them. Social media is constantly evolving and becoming more widespread throughout the world. Recently, it was a way for those involved in the Arab Spring to communicate and organize. Social media is a tool that is accessible to many people all over the world and allows everyone to share their opinion, to have a voice. It is an alternative to mainstream media sources that only report one person’s opinion. The ability to voice an alternative opinion and share it with the whole world is, unfortunately, a revolutionary concept for many people.
Khalid Albaih defined a revolution as a series of events that make up a story. Additionally, this story is made up of multiple peoples’ stories. Social media sites provide a platform to share these stories in a multitude of ways. You can learn the story of someone’s life just by going on his or her Facebook page. Snapchat allows users to share what is going in their lives right as it happens. On Instagram, users share a picture that best describes their thoughts or life events. Twitter makes users get their message across in one hundred and forty characters or less. There are so many ways to share a story, but stories are also circulating quicker now. This means they are also forgotten much more rapidly.
We live in a world of constant stimulus, which makes it harder for things to hold our attention. One issue with social media is that it is difficult for one to stay relevant. It allows us access to so many stories and opinions, that we do not ever focus on one. Khalid Albaih has found a way to stay a significant figure throughout all of this. It is because he is constantly on social media: reading, posting, sharing, etc. He lives his life in this online world by commenting on what is happening in the real world in places her cannot access. If someone reproduces his work in a place of conflict, it provides Albaih a way to “be there” without physically being there. This concept allows everyone in the world to become involved with revolutions, not just those who are actually there.
The standard idea about art is that it is something aesthetically pleasing to look at with some meaning, but not always. Art is not typically thought of as a tool for a revolution. However, modern art has become a form of protest and social commentary. Pieces of art in galleries are observations of our world and what has become of it. Nothing is ever just a pretty picture; there is deep meaning behind every brushstroke of green paint and piece of paper cut in a circle. Albaih is a political cartoonist, so his work is expected to have meaning. He has become so influential that people in power are afraid of what he will draw about them. He has truly used the tool of art as a way to start a revolution. The fact that this art can be shared online makes it even more effective. We can literally start revolutions from our living rooms.