Skip navigation

I really enjoyed the video for the #nosomosdelitos campaign. For one, it challenged notions of “slacktivism,” which is the idea that users may use social media as a cop out to actually getting involved and engaged with a social movement. The idea that with a simply “like” or “retweet” one has done enough for the cause.

Skeptics have argued against the effectiveness of social media in creating change, arguing that social media campaigns lack the tools to mobilize and integrate themselves into the political institutions that will ultimately formalize progressive policy (In the U.S. these institutions include lobbying Congress or standing before the Supreme Court).  In essence, social media movements would need to bureaucratize and vertically integrate in order to face these political institutions which are already bureaucratized and vertically integrated. This is inherently difficult as new media campaigns are often based upon networks.

In requiring one to take a picture to go along side their petition signature, I think the #nosomosdelitos campaign showed that the aforementioned ideas are not necessarily true. By inserting these faces and bodies into places they were not invited to, it forced people to care. And that is where the true power of social movements lie: in creating allies that may not necessarily identify with the cause, but can sympathize. Seeing a picture, and not just a name on a piece of paper, has the potential to invoke within us all that is human, and this stands in stark contrast to the bureaucracies that govern policy today. In my opinion (and I may be naive), this can add a sense multidimensionality and fervor to social movements that can’t be ignored.