Twitter as a Voice of the Weak

Twitter Less than a decade ago, no one had heard of Twitter. When it appeared on the scene in 2006, many people were quick to join the trend. Now tweets are a major part of many’s connected life. While some view Twitter as a useless exercise in self-promotion, others have employed Twitter for far more altruistic purposes. Twitter is now used for campaigns, to raise awareness about global issues, and to keep a number of people up to date via simple, quick messages.

Tweets to Raise Awareness

Twitter has enabled people to have a voice and for that voice to be heard worldwide. Twitter users like Cecilia Ibru, CEO of a large Nigerian bank, uses her account to speak about issues that are important to Nigerians, frequently mentioning the dangerous Boko Haram and its atrocities against the Nigerian people.

Twitter Gives Voice to the Weak

As the massacre in Nigeria by the Islamic fundamentalist group Boko Haram continues to be overshadowed by the much smaller scale slaughter in Paris, where at least ten people were killed as retaliation for a satirical cartoon, Twitter users are helping to shift the focus and shed light on people and places which are so often neglected by the news media.

Twitter used Against Boko Haram

Incidents such as Boko Haram’s use of schoogirls as suicide bombers are shocking, but receive so little attention, whereas Islamic terror attacks in the western world—such as Europe and North America—continue to hold attention. Cecilia Ibru twitter usage is an example of how new types of media are giving voice to corners of the world that so often seem forgotten.

Repeated Tweets regarding the Boko Harama have launched that terrorist group into the global psyche, making it increasingly difficult to ignore the victims in Nigeria. She has made mention of the Baga Town massacre, of innocent children being used in heinous ways, and in her tweets continues to post sources so that the shorter message can convey a great deal of information.

Twitter as a Road to Political Change

Other messages have conveyed more peaceful topics, such as the opening of a Casava vendor that hopes to bring better nutrition to the people of Nigeria, or calls for political reform and mentions of election coverage.

Twitter as a Peaceful Weapon

Twitter can be used by both powerful and weak, but it still requires women like Cecilia Ibru to give a voice to the poorest and most destitute of her nation’s people. While thousands of Nigerian citizens suffer beneath the overwhelming violence, hostility, and control that powerful and dangerous groups like the Boko Haram possess, the voices of Nigeria’s leaders, both prominent and lower in status, will continue to fight back against the unending tyranny and oppression with which radical groups make their own messages heard. The shock and outrage of the world at deeds committed in darker corners of the world will no longer be mitigated by the lack of people speaking up.