Posts tagged ‘activism’

Lobbying social-media style with Twitter: Examples and how-to’s

It’s been about a year since I’ve created a Twitter feed for my organization, Public Citizen.

During this time, we’ve posted links, conversed with followers, shared content related to our mission, and encouraged followers to take action. And overall, Twitter has helped us build Public Citizen’s brand, develop a younger following and seem more approachable. But one thing we haven’t tried is using Twitter to achieve what used to be a solely offline activity: Public interest lobbying.

Contacting lawmakers has become increasingly difficult. Their inboxes typically block large influxes of constituent emails (an example of this occurred news of the financial bailout first hit the news this fall), and constituents typically can only email lawmakers within their district. I’ve talked to some activists who have recommended going back to hand-delivering paper petitions to get the word out. There’s even a campaign from Consumers Union called Don’tBlockMyVoice.org.

Now, with the expanding world of social media, lawmakers are creating Twitter accounts. Granted, the person actually doing the tweeting probably isn’t the lawmaker, but this does provide another avenue, on top of paper, phone calls and emails, to communicate with elected officials. (more…)

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April 8, 2009 at 9:28 pm Leave a comment

Speaking out against hunting seals for profit

This week marked the beginning of Canada’s commercial seal hunt. It’s the largest slaughter of marine mammals on earth, and it’s an incredibly painful, enraging issue to track.

As someone who has an immense love of animals and an immense hatred of animal cruelty, I found myself close to tears today as I read the stories and looked at the photos on the Humane Society’s campaign page.

But I’m only looking at photos and videos – I can’t imagine how painful it must be for the Humane Society staffers who are currently in Canada documenting the hunt in order to spread the word and organize protests against it.

Nineteen thousand baby seals have been killed in the span of just 2.5 days – primarily for the sale of seal pelts to fashion markets in Europe. What’s more, fishermen only make a small fraction of their income from this slaughter, and less than 6,000 fishermen participate in the hunt each year. This doesn’t minimize the immense damage done to the seal population, though.

The Humane Society did provide an image of hope, however – a survivor of the first phase of the hunt. And the organization is also providing ways to take action. You can find out more information and how to stop the seal hunt by visiting http://www.hsus.org/protectseals.html.

March 26, 2009 at 8:43 pm Leave a comment


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