Why did people come up with the term Slacktivism?

I think the word “slactivism” has a negative connotation to it. It makes me feel like I am not doing anything at all although I am supporting a cause online. Being called a slactivist will not motivate anyone to work harder to achieve something, but on the contrary, it might bring people down. This can have a great effect on non-profit organization’s online campaigns. I know a lot of people who would rather do nothing rather than share a cause on their facebook page and be labeled a “slactivist” by society.

The following are two very interesting quotes that I found online and that I would like to share regarding this issue:

“It irritates me that we have invented this term as a pejorative way to describe what should be viewed as the first steps to being involved in a cause in 2010,” said Katya Andresen, Chief Operating Officer of Network for Good. “Let’s not whine that people want to do easy things that make them feel they’ve somehow made a difference. It’s okay if someone’s initial commitment is modest -– and it’s truly an opportunity that it’s easier than ever to spread information, create new initiatives for social good, and take action.”

“What the world needs now is far more engagement by individual citizens, not less, and simple steps such as signing petitions or even sharing opinions/tweeting are steps in the right direction,” said Randy Paynter, CEO and Founder of Care2. “As Edmund Burke once said, ‘Nobody made a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could do only a little.’ Because small steps can lead to bigger steps, being critical of small steps serves no good. It simply disenfranchises folks.”

I think we should stop society, and even our own selves, from labeling those who merely support a cause online as slacktivits. We should stop thinking of them as slacktivits, they are actually doing some change, regardless of being on a small scale.


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