It’s the digital age and what better way to to protest than using your social media wisely, to be a voice for the oppressed.
It’s Blackout Tuesday today, a day acclaimed by so-called activists where everyone uploads solid black squares on their feed to show their solidarity with the killing of George Floyd and the ongoing protests.
Adding a tag of #blacklivesmatter or #blackouttuesday and continuing by with their day, is what every other influencer and mundane user seems to be doing today.
Over the past week, America’s been in utter chaos. The pandemic isn’t stopping anytime soon, the economy is facing it’s biggest decline since the Great Depression and now, since the brutal killing of Floyd, people were enraged and took to the streets to show their outrage and plead for justice!
Social media has been a vitial source to help protesters keep up with the latest news and for others to acknowledge the brutal situations on the streets. Blackout tuesday was also inspired by this.
#theshowmuststop was where it all begin. Major celebrities, public figures and multinational companies chose to stop working for the day, to show their grief.
It’s more common with with those from the music industry, artists such as Jamila Thomas and Brianna Agyemang were the masterminds behind it. Both #theshowmuststop and #blackouttuesday share similar thoughts but is blackout tuesday becoming just a trend and not being of any benefit to the ones seeking justice?
Music giants such as Spotify, Tiktok and Apple announced that they’re going to stream Black Lives Matter based content and suspend their typical promotions, as a part of proving that the show must indeed stop.
Tuesday, June 2 is meant to intentionally disrupt the work week,” explains the website for #TheShowMustBePaused. “It is a day to take a beat for an honest, reflective, and productive conversation about what actions we need to collectively take to support the Black community.”
The website also shows how you as an individual not effected by the protests can do your part! It has links to petitions, donation drives and bailing out those who’ve been arrested at the march.
It doesn’t just stop at George Floyd’s fund. The website makes sure every African-American who’s life has changed dramatically because of our unjust system get the justice they deserve.
Ahmaud Arbery & Breonna Taylor, both were recently ‘murdered’ per se, for barely doing anything.
Anyways, apparently this brilliant campaign reached mainstream social media and activists have continously called it out for doing more than damage than good.
Spamming black squared posts on the feed with hashtags that are being used to make people aware of current affairs has unfortunately just left a feed filled with countless black pictures which are of no one to anyone.
Hiding actual info of the movement, leaving behind rows filled with literal darkness. Blackout Tuesday has failed miserably in this sense.
Acclaimed 17-year old activist, Kenindra Woods tweeted:
“It has come to my attention that many allies are using #BlackLivesMatter hashtag w black image on insta. We know that’s it no intent to harm but to be frank, this essentially does harm the message. We use hashtag to keep ppl updated. PLS stop using the hashtag for black images!!”
As Tuesday was nearing it’s end, the organizers behind #theshowmustbestopped campaign urged alleys to not use the movement’s vital hashtags atleast while posting blank pictures.