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Tag: Social media

Austin Chronicle: Austin FC Fans Prove Y’all Means All

Posted in Austin, Austin Chronicle, and Journalism

On January 2 of this year, Chris Saldaña sent a tweet, tagging Austin’s mayor and police chief: “Happy New Year @Chief_Chacon, any update on @austintexasgov cleaning up this piece of property that belongs to the City of #Austin. It’s going on two months that you said it would be handled. This video is from today. Cars, trash, drugs, prostitution. Help us @MayorAdler.”

The linked video pans through an encampment used by unhoused people in a North Austin park near I-35 in the St. Johns neighborhood. A pile of trash bags and garbage gathered into a pile can be seen, and some tents, but not much else. (No people are visible.)

Saldaña, a journalist and communications professional, spent 2021 as an announcer for Austin FC, during the inaugural year of Austin’s Major League Soccer team. Things turned sour for him quickly after the tweet, which was met with a flood of disagreement (and, according to Saldaña, some threatening messages too). Many of the replies were from fans, who thought that his tweet was starkly at odds with the inclusive atmosphere they’ve tried to create at Austin FC games, where attendees may chant, “Y’all means all.”

Activism & Shared Social Media: How Can We Close The ‘Occupy Hole’?

Posted in Creative Commons, Journalism, and Occupy Wall Street

I got quoted in an article about Micah White, the self-styled “Occupy Founder” that recently spent time hob-nobbing with the 1% at Davos. In passing, the article covered another issue: the problem of stolen shared social media accounts during the Occupy Wall Street movement.

During the national Occupy movement, it became routine to hear about camps with a stolen Facebook or Twitter account. One person would get into a disagreement with the rest of the social media working group and run off with the whole account.

When this happens with a commercial business, or a nonprofit or any undertaking that’s conventionally organized under capitalism, the owner can prove ownership of the account and get Twitter to give it back. With a leaderless movement like Occupy, you and your comrades are on your own.

Starbucks Racism & The Media: There’s Nothing New Except The Attention

Posted in Creative Commons, and Journalism

As a journalist, I want to talk to other white people about recent coverage of “Starbucks Racism” incidents.

People of all races are horrified by the reports filling the news of black people targeted by whites for everyday activities. I’m calling it “Starbucks Racism” in this post not because I particularly hate Starbucks. It’s simply that the incident in which police arrested two black men waiting for a third friend at a Philadelphia Starbucks is now infamous. This story ushered in renewed interest in the media in this kind of “casual” but extremely dangerous racism.

There’s a reaction to these Starbucks Racism stories I’ve mostly noticed among white people. It reflects both a misunderstanding of systemic racism and a misunderstanding of how the media works. I’ll paraphrase something I saw on a friend’s wall: “What’s wrong with people? I’m so disgusted at how people act recently.”

Reclaim Your Online Privacy: Alternatives To Facebook, Twitter & Google

Posted in Act Out!, Creative Commons, Journalism, and Video

Imagine a police state so bent on repressing dissent that people were targeted by the government just for visiting a web page or liking a page on Facebook?

This dystopian scenario isn’t science fiction, and it isn’t something happening in a far off country — it’s happening in the United States. No really, let’s take a look at a recent example: On an auspicious Friday the 13th in October, the federal government dropped its demand that Facebook turn over information about anyone who had simply “liked” a page dedicated to protesting Donald Trump’s inauguration. And while it wasn’t successful, this isn’t the first time the feds tried to target anyone who’d even looked up information on the massive January 20 protests.

While the government backed down when challenged by groups like the ACLU and cyberliberties watchdog Electronic Frontier Foundation, this was still a clear attempt to silence even the most basic forms of dissent and it’s almost certain we haven’t seen the last of this kind of thing. Keep in mind that dozens of people arrested for protesting the inauguration are STILL facing decades in prison, and we can only guess at the horrors the Cheeto Gestapo might have unleashed with access to even more information about Trump’s opponents.

And if you think this all sounds Orwellian, you are absolutely correct.

Kit O’Connell Guest Hosts @WeAreDisabled, Disability Twitter Account

Posted in Journalism

From May 18 to May 25, I hosted the Twitter account @WeAreDisabled. Similar to other group accounts like @sweden or @realscientists, this Twitter passes from person to person with the only common theme being disability.

The account admins created a Storify of all my tweets, but below I’ll link to my main threads so you can click through and read them if you like.

First I introduced myself:

Drexel University Abandons Professor After Attacks Over Satirical ‘White Genocide’ Tweets

Posted in Archive, Journalism, and MintPress News

George Ciccariello-Maher, a professor at Drexel University, is facing death threats after a series of satirical tweets about “white genocide,” a concept invented by white supremacists.

The university is also facing criticism for its refusal to wholeheartedly support the free speech rights of its employee in the midst of an onslaught of complaints driven, in part, by far-right news outlets like Breitbart.

“All I Want for Christmas is White Genocide,” Ciccariello-Maher tweeted on Saturday, according to a report published Monday by The Philadelphia Inquirer. A second tweet created on Sunday read: “To clarify: when the whites were massacred during the Haitian revolution, that was a good thing indeed.”

Ciccariello-Maher teaches in Drexel’s Department of History and Politics. According to his university bio, he often appears in the media to comment on “social movements, particularly in Latin America” and also frequently writes about “race, racism, prisons and policing in the U.S. and internationally.”