As #BlackLivesMatter continues to grow on social media, ABC 2 TV in Baltimore recently hosted Kimberly Moffitt for a discussion to explain how the movement has spread and how it is different from the Civil Rights Movement. Moffitt, an associate professor of American studies, noted that social media has changed the way in which messages and viewpoints are shared through expanded access.
“That’s the space that we’re in now with social media that anyone has access to the platform,” she said.
She explained that during the Civil Rights Movement, people would often gather at local churches, community centers, homes, and other spaces to strategize and coordinate messages. With social media, anyone can be behind a computer or mobile device and type the hashtag to spread their message.
“At this point, everyone becomes an expert. Everyone becomes that lead activist as long as they have the right platform to access a number of different individuals,” Moffitt explained. “The Civil Rights Movement, it was almost very strategic to make decisions about who should be those individuals to speak on behalf of the movement in order to carry out the particular strategy. Now, it’s anyone’s fair game.”
View the full discussion on ABC 2’s “In Focus” program.