RESPOND TO ISSUES YOU CARE ABOUT,
EXTEND YOUR DEFINITION OF CIVIC ACTION
IN THE DIGITAL AGE
how has the internet changed the conversation?
This conversation starter invites students to respond to a meme depicting 'slacktivism' >
Memes like this one suggest that the advent of the Internet ushered in the age of ‘slacktivism’ or ‘clicktivism’, defined as a low-commitment mode of engagement. While such critiques bring up some useful points, they largely overlook the ways that digital and social media expand (rather than divert) the spectrum of possibilities when it comes to taking civic action.
To kick-start a conversation with your students about what has changed in the digital age, reflect on the above meme by asking:
What does this meme suggest about how the Internet has changed social and civic action?
How are things different today compared to social movements from the past (before the digital age)? Can you think of examples that would demonstrate what has changed?
What has stayed the same? Can you think of examples that demonstrate what has stayed the same?