I’ve been recently involved in a Transparency International seminar about fighting corruption in my hometown Mohammedia (Morocco). The audience was composed of young activists from the arab world and the theme (and hashtag) of the seminar was #ActivateMaroc !
Giving my keynote, which I untitled « Social Media and Corruption fight », was a magic experience where the energy of social media club members met the enthusiasm of the young participants. It was a moment of intense sharing where we discussed the remarkable role social media can have in fighting corruption. Social media can actually empower citizens fighting any social scourges. It can empower people by giving them a new way to communicate, a different way which might be disruptive and highly engaging. Blogging, Micro-blogging and Networking are new and affordable tools that can help citizens communicate on their causes and thus solve social issues.
I’ve previously asked my network about this empowerment and they answered that to be successful, people need to be Media Literate. They also need appropriate web and social platforms. In fact, my community told me that we cannot be empowered without media literacy ! I think that citizens also need (Real) Leaders and a common goal. They need projects driven by those leaders. Seth Godin said that « A crowd is a tribe without a leader ». We have crowds composed of connected people, but we need appropriate projects, plate-forms and leaders in order to leverage these connections.
We need to fund, launch and coach high value projects linking the power of social media and the enthusiasm of young activists. Those projects should be simple, intuitive, user centered and social oriented in order to impulse engagement among the web communities and spread the word in the ground (Offline).
Social Media are here but they need you to perform on them and to lead others on their fight against corruption and other social issues. Please be part of that fight, you are welcome !