Citizen Journalism has an important role in promoting various issues relating to society as a whole. One such example is that of the Woman’s March, which took place on the 21st January 2017 and saw a wide range of people take to the streets of, not just Washington, but in various cities all around the world to show solidarity for women following the inauguration of Donald Trump’s presidency.
As a result, citizen journalists had a key role in capturing the event on the day. Social media websites, such as Facebook and Twitter showed several images, videos and live tweets being posted and shared. These images were shared worldwide and proved that both men and women were not going to stand for Trump and what he stands for.
According to the Women’s March official website, “over 5 million of us worldwide and over 1 million in Washington, D.C., came to march, speak and make our voices heard.” Citizen Journalism proved its usefulness during the March when, days later, Donald Trump claimed that more people attended his inauguration than the Women’s March. Due to the outpouring of images and videos that appeared online before and after this statement, Citizen Journalism proved this was not true. One such example is from this video showing a citizen journalist’s view of the Women’s March from the front line in the march in Washington D.C.
Furthermore, countless other images and videos appeared on social media accounts from attendees, depicting the strong numbers at the march and the passion with which these people spoke out about this very prominent issue.
For the 2017 Women’s March, social media and citizen journalism were used to its advantage. An app was made in an Instagram-style to show photos of the march and to share information and updates on the march. While the app itself was made specifically for the march on Washington, it certainly added to the support as attendees could meet up easier.
Main organizing for the Women’s March originated on Facebook. According to an article by The Verge, Teresa Shook was the first to suggest the idea of a march the day of the presidential election on Pantsuit Nation, a private Facebook group page for supporters of Hillary Clinton. “By November the 11th, her suggestion had been taken up by 10,000 women,” the article reveals. In just three days, through social media, the march was to go ahead.
Even if people couldn’t make the Women’s March in their respective towns and cities, citizens shared their support on social media by liking, sharing and retweeting pictures, status’ and videos online. Simply by doing this small act of citizen journalism, support and recognition for the event spread so that it reached a global audience. Sister Marches have also been widely documented, thanks to Citizen journalism.
As a result of the spread of images and videos online, the Women’s March gained global recognition it more than likely would never have gotten without the participation of citizens online, thus displaying the true significance of citizen journalism today.