When everything feels uncertain, the only thing that remains constant in every individual’s life is social media. A platform where every cry for help is heard and shared, social media has been everyone’s hero during the pandemic.And while social media takes centre stage during the pandemic, ‘Slacktivism’ which was once termed as a self-deluded idea that by liking, sharing, or retweeting something you are helping out, has become a boon in times of crisis.
From tweeting about leads on oxygen cylinders and hospital beds to raising funds for charity onInstagram, Indian designers and designer labels Pink City, Kunal Anil Tanna, Amaris by Prerna Rajpal, Drishti & Zahabia, ZWAAN and Vedika M share their thoughts and views on Slacktivism in 2021.They also share how social media has impacted us all during the pandemic.
In the current scenario, the scale of help our nation needs is cumbersome. So, at this point any kind of attempt to give a boost to the requirements to those who are desperate to find hospital beds, oxygen cylinders, medicines, and food for survival during COVID-19 is important. Having said that, verifying where funds are going/ if the sources are genuine, is an imperative step that shouldn’t be avoided.
Slacktivism requires reasonable work, and every drop of effort contributes to the giant pool needed to get our country out of these unprecedented times. Every business owes a responsibility to make philanthropic efforts as a part of their business plan, no matter how hard it seems. No effort is too small, no contribution goes in vain. We recently witnessed the power of social media when we tried to raise funds to contribute to the selfless efforts of Hemkunt Foundation.
Kunal Anil Tanna
Slacktivism needs to be obviously addressed with a relatively deeper and a more sincere purpose. Although there are several people with genuine efforts, there are many who have sadly been only following it blindly, because it is trending and makes the individual feel like some sort of an activist. But then they say, what matters is the outcome.If that is resulting in something positive, then in my opinion slacktivism has made its mark.
Any cause with a humble intention should use every possible platform to reach out to and be able to help as many as it can. We recently were a part of a fundraiser with DI Public Relations, where the amount raised by the sale of various luxury products such as couture garments, accessories, etc. was given to two NGOs. A collective effort of promoting this fundraiser via various social media platforms did boost and result in an encouraging support that helped achieve the intended goals.
The thing about online activism is that every little thing, even as little as sharing or retweeting about something you believe in, makes a difference. It's gotten a lot of negative connotation with words like 'slacktivism', but the truth is not everyone can give up their lives and come on the streets to join protests or lead charities or movements.
I don't like the term ‘slacktivism’ because it discourages people from engaging with important issues in the first place. Every like, tweet, and share, is important. Showing up and actively participating is definitely more important, but it's not everyone's cup of tea. We should encourage people to do the little they can and not disregard it with using words like ‘slacktivism’.
Today, the power and reach of social media is massive. I feel, in recent times it has practically proved to be of great help to people in need all across the globe.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, we have successfully used our social media pages to raise funds for organisations that are doing some amazing work on ground for migrant workers and COVID-19 affected regions in our country. I believe that would not have been possible for brands like us to do without the influence of social media.
I believe slacktivism can be looked at as a positive means of amplifying social causes and spreading awareness to the people directly impacted by it. Though the verification of such information is equally important.
Drishti & Zahabia
For us, sharing social causes has never been about reaching any social media goals for the brand. We just feel that whoever is fortunate enough to have a certain kind of reach can always use it as an advantage to spread awareness. We have seen a lot of influencers and brands step forward and do exceptional work at helping people save lives by amplifying the leads.
Social media has definitely made slacktivism easy. We believe that it has become one of the most important platforms in today's time considering the voices and opinions are being heard. We value the power it has, to make the impossible possible.
Amaris by Prerna Rajpal
Social media has helped spread awareness during these difficult times. Given the current situation where we cannot be physically present to help one another, slacktivism through social media platforms has helped reach that goal. From social media influencers and stylists sharing leads on ICU beds, food provisions, etc to brands conducting fundraisers for charity, social media has helped spread positivity in many ways.
So let’s continue to share, raise funds and help those in need through social media.