Social media is everywhere and it has major effects on the world every day. More than 78% of Americans have a social media account and almost 2 billion people worldwide use some sort of social media. It allows people to have a public space to talk, meet new people and discover new things. It is a prime space for people to talk about politics, and revolutions. Social media is an important aspect of starting revolutions and making a change, but it is not enough. There needs to be more action taken after the social media posts to truly make a difference in what people are fighting for.
Although it can’t be the only tactic in a revolution, social media can have many advantages. Khalid Albaih talked about the advantage of social media versus main stream media. He mentioned how main stream sources are sometimes own by one person or company so people are only hearing from one perspective, which can provide inaccurate information. Social media, on the other hand, is available to everyone so there are many different perspectives. Another advantage is that people post first hand experiences and say exactly what they saw or how they feel. Social media plays a huge role in allowing people to express their opinions and start a movement. However, it definitely has its disadvantages as well.
Since social media is constantly changing based on what is going on around the world, many posts on certain subjects are forgotten about quickly. Albaih mentioned how it is normal that one week everyone will be talking about something and then the next it will be irrelevant on social media because there will be a new interesting topic to discuss and debate. Due to this constant change in topic, it is extremely difficult to make much of a change using only social media. However, that being said, social media is a good place to start for a movement or revolution and then work up to taking more actions and forcing governments to take actions to make the change.
Albaih’s work is a great way of making people understand what is going on around the world and want to take action to make a change. He expressed how his cartoons are a good way to express his opinions and art is a good way to do this because it is a universal language. Art plays a huge role in social and political movements because everyone can understand it. It was interesting when Albaih said that people draw and write on walls, not because they are all amazing artists, but because it is an efficient way of expressing themselves and sharing their opinions with the public. This is similar to the way social media works. However, social media posts are there one week and disappear the next and art remains for longer. Albaih combines his art and social media by posting his cartoons on social media platforms.
Social media, with its advantages and disadvantages, impacts our society every day. Albaih’s work shows us how social media can have a positive and beneficial effect in political and social movements. Social media should be continued to be used for expressing opinions and learning different perspectives but it can’t stop there.