Armie Hammer's Instagram has uncovered his interest in some unusual hashtags after disturbing messages from the actor were leaked earlier this week. Steele carefully frames this as “Digital Black Feminism,” building on literatures of black oral culture, alternative publics, black feminism in response to exclusion, and voice and democratic participation. Within the #TrayvonMartin network, we can trace the way users respond to discourse that supports or diminishes the severity of this violence and the important role of narrative whereby hashtags are linked together to contextualize, memorialize, and make demands. They will even respond directly to questions asked via tweet during live broadcasts. Murder is murder” to “@rzimmermanjr The Zimmermans think only they have the right to voice their opinions …” and “@rzimmermanjr Man Fuck your brother!” Here we see the interventionist counternarratives that arose from the network in response to the presentation of Zimmerman’s defense, as well as the outrage in the network directed at Zimmerman generally. The next network we examine, the trial network, comprised nearly 70,000 tweets in our sample, sent by 37,588 users connected by 62,740 retweets and mentions. @BETNews reported details of the trial in the form of direct quotations from the prosecution against Zimmerman that tended to center Martin’s innocence and cast doubt on Zimmerman’s version of events, occasionally using all caps to emphasize parts the reporter found important. He says race was not a factor in George Zimmerman killing Martin. That baby was MURDERED 4NOTHING,” and actress Gabrielle Union tweeted, “#TrayvonMartin case has exposed some ppl as monsters … not just Zimmerman but ANY1 who makes excuses 4 a man who kills an unarmed child.” In such tweets and others shared widely in the network sent by these women, we see Henson, Arnold, and Union using personal and familial appeals, calling Trayvon “baby” and comparing him to family members. Visual ThemesThemes that emerged in racialized images that media would expect to use. Praxisbell hooks talks about this as teaching to transgress. In their public statements, they even go so far asto stand up for the killer—saying he’s “a college grad” who took a classin criminal justice. She found that 98% of the images contributed were black—half men, half women. Although neither had formal roles in the trial proceedings, both Zimmerman and Crump commented on the trial frequently on Twitter and other media platforms. Two of these accounts, @RealFerrellWill and @WeLoveTrayvon, were the most retweeted accounts in the pretrial network, collecting a combined total of more than 15,000 retweets over the course of several days in late March 2012. This eighteen-month period allows us to examine themes that emerged immediately after Zimmerman’s acquittal, as well as those that surfaced after the initial media frenzy over the verdict dissipated. Bloggers are faced with the reality of dealing with capitalistic patriarchic structures while fighting against it. In coordination with the march, ordinary people and celebrities across the country showed their solidarity with Martin’s family by posting selfies donning hoodies, commenting on the banal nature of the clothing that was being discussed in the media by conservative pundits like Geraldo Rivera as “thug wear.” The march spurred more celebrity support from rappers Nelly and Sean “Diddy” Combs. And oppositional consciousness represents the mindset of oppressed peoples like people of color who see their identity in opposition to a dominant culture and fight for their authentic representation. Variations on George Zimmerman’s name (#Zimmerman, #GeorgeZimmerman) appeared most frequently and earliest, followed by the names of other African Americans killed by police and vigilantes. Relatively smaller in size than the networks covering the time periods before and after the trial, the trial network — perhaps predictably — is dominated by accounts tweeting from and about Zimmerman’s trial. Catherine Knight Steele talks about the creation of digital black feminisim in blogging communities. On February 26, 2012, 17-year-old Trayvon Martin walked to a convenience store near his father’s home in Sanford, Florida, for Skittles and a drink. Can’t figure it out? 848.9k Followers, 822 Following, 4,740 Posts - See Instagram photos and videos from EBC (@embracingblackculture) In a summary of trends, Twitter said the hashtag #COVID19 and other variations were tweeted nearly 400 million times, while #StayHome was the third biggest hashtag of the year. These tweets were sent during the year-plus that elapsed from the day George Zimmerman was charged with second-degree murder (April 11, 2012) through the day he was acquitted of all charges related to Trayvon Martin’s death (July 13, 2013). In the question and answer after the panel, one participant articulated this as a tactic of witnessing the has long been a part of black culture and activism. These included a tweet in which the anchor rephrased his initial reaction as a rhetorical question that did more discursive avoidance of blame attribution: “The shooting of #TrayvonMartin. !,” while actress Tichina Arnold, who tweeted daily the number of days that had passed since Trayvon Martin “begged for his young life,” also tweeted, “I Repeat: I WILL NOT let the death of INNOCENT #TrayvonMartin go until #GEORGEZIMMERMAN is brought 2 JUSTICE. #AskRachel: How a Twitter Hashtag Became Black America's Family Reunion. However, unlike the similar accounts in the pretrial network, the @realWillSmith donation-for-retweet promise was extremely short-lived, lasting only hours, compared to several days for the accounts that trended in the pretrial network. And building on the popular #Planking and #Tebowing memes, the hashtag #Trayvoning was used by mostly white youth to post pictures of themselves posed as if dead with Skittles and AriZona Iced Tea in their hands. If you’re using an Instagram hashtag generator to source engaging hashtags, like the ones mentioned above, you’ll likely receive a generic set of 30 hashtags. For example, similar to the @RealFerrellWill and @WeLoveTrayvon accounts described above, a parody account masquerading as that of actor Will Smith (@realWillSmith) received more than five hundred retweets in exchange for promised financial donations to the (fictional) #TrayvonMartin Foundation. Co-occurrence helps us tell the story of how members of the #TrayvonMartin network understood Martin’s killing in relation to other stories they deemed important both at the time and in the following years. 112.4k Followers, 1,528 Following, 1,135 Posts - See Instagram photos and videos from Legendary Rootz |Black Culture (@legendaryrootz) legendaryrootz. Notably, while BET is an entertainment, not news, channel, it is the only cable or broadcast network to appear in a dominant position in the trial network, revealing the sourcing preferences of the network during this period and a desire for news about the case that openly contextualized Martin within Black experiences with anti-Black violence and the criminal justice system. @AC360 8p, It is notable that these two Cooper tweets were most frequently shared and responded to in the network, for Cooper also tweeted several tweets during the same time frame that received less attention and interaction. Sarah J. Jackson, Moya Bailey, and Brooke Foucault Welles are the authors of “#HashtagActivism: Networks of Race and Gender Justice,” from which this article is excerpted. TWiB! On For Harriet, the bloggers were less concerned about her identity as a feminist than in her agency to declare herself as a feminist. Now it's #trayvonmartin! The injection of Black Lives Matter discussion and organization was controversial, provoking the ire of female gamers who thought the space should be used for activism on Black Lives Matter, which felt like a rejection of women of color in gaming. There is a shift away from elite notions of knowledge. Despite this evidence, the acquittal of these officers in a suburban court a year later sparked the 1992 L.A. riots. Was race the reason he was labeled suspicious by shooter? Any errors here are my own. In the crucial years leading up to the emergence of the Movement for Black Lives, black Americans used digital networks not only to cope with day-to-day experiences of racism, but … After March 13 there was a significant uptick in petition signatures once celebrities, including Spike Lee and Mia Farrow, began to tweet about it. These are categorically arranged so that other online users can … That was just the beginning of what would become a resounding chorus calling for justice. We would like to show you a description here but the site won’t allow us. "Beyond Hashtags" explores these everyday practices and their relationship to larger social issues through an in-depth analysis of a transplatform network of black American digital and social media users and content creators. One of the first and most visible instances of the shift to digital- and social media–based racial justice organizing followed the 2009 murder of Oscar Grant by Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) police officer Johannes Mehserle Grant, a 22-year-old Black father on his way home from celebrating New Year’s Eve with friends, was shot in the back by Mehserle in the early morning hours of January 1, 2009, after BART police responded to calls of a fight on the train. Dialectic of self and community needs is a common theme. NotYourAsianSidekick, 2013. #TrayvonMartin, Guy: #TrayvonMartin died after experiencing child's worst fear: "to be followed on the way home in the dark by a stranger." Posts. On December 16, 2013 (in a since deleted tweet), Internet activist Suey … How are our women of color reimagining black feminism online? Notably, Weiner has a fairly modest following on Twitter but was elevated in this network owing to his close proximity and access to the case. After the acquittal was announced, @106andPark began tweeting images of, and details about, the spontaneous protests occurring in response to the verdict in Times Square and other U.S. cities, ways for those who disagreed with the verdict to take action, and asked followers to “Tweet with us your reactions of the #ZimmermanTrial’s verdict using #106ForTrayvon today as we discuss #TrayvonMartin w/ experts.” The show dedicated an episode to Martin two days after the verdict in which it live-tweeted the reactions of hip hop stars like Young Jeezy to the verdict. And Sarah Florini talks about This Week in Blackness’s brand of citizen journalism around Ferguson. Monáe’s tweet also coincided with the Million Hoodie March, organized by Daniel Maree and others in New York City. We would like to show you a description here but the site won’t allow us. And its important to remember that even in studying marginalized communities, there are those that are even more marginalized. Here’s a plan to change that. They all need to work toward a new, inclusive environment. Eighty people were arrested, but the number might have been higher were it not for fast-acting, Twitter-savvy organizers. The question at the heart of contributor’s images was: What would mass media do if I died at the hands of a cop? We marched & protested in Oakland until Oscar's killer was charged & convicted! Best Popular Hashtag to use with #black are #gainwithja #__uncleben #blackmood #blackandgreen #blackandblack #africantwins #blackisblack #blackismycolor #red #white. Using hashtags on Instagram and elsewhere helps users tag content of a particular subject with the # symbol to organize and categorize messages or photos. A number of bystanders recorded the killing on their cell phones. The meme, which reflects the now widely discussed use of misinformation and misdirection online, lacks facts and accurate reporting — as is true of many narratives that arise online seeking to prove reverse racism or suggesting that crimes committed by Black perpetrators against whites are ignored. Further, Martin’s innocence is continuously reentrenched through language that focuses on his youth (“young life,” “child”), as is the maliciousness of his death, both in descriptions of the individual actions of Zimmerman and in the characterizations of those who sought to defend him (“begged for his life,” “murdered,” “monsters”). took on a new role when they covered Ferguson, using a broad set of citizen journalism tools. The #TrayvonMartin hashtag continues to trend each year on Martin’s birthday, as well as on the anniversary of the day he was killed. Pass! One consequence of the work of this publicist was that Kevin Cunningham, a white graduate of Howard University Law School, learned of the case and started a Change.org petition demanding Zimmerman’s indictment. Apart from these dates related to Martin’s life and death, the #TrayvonMartin hashtag also trends during other events involving the extrajudicial killing of Black men and boys, including the August 2014 protests following the death of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri; the November 2014 protests following the death of Tamir Rice; and the December 2014 protests following the failure to indict the police officers involved in the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner (we discuss these cases in the next chapter). While the original group of Black celebrities central to the pretrial network are no longer influential here, they have been replaced in the posttrial network by singer Rihanna, producer NatStar, and BET’s 106 & Park, a live studio audience music video show in which hosts Terrence J and Rocsi Diaz discussed pop culture and news. Preserving black oral culture online is a key part of the cultural practice. The videos shot by bystanders would prove important to the case, particularly because of the discrepancies between the officers’ accounts of what happened and that of other witnesses. The most retweeted accounts also included several parody accounts that exploited the opportunity for public attention by tweeting false promises of money or political action to garner retweets. Steele studied the blogging community For Harriet, which functions as a kind of “digital barbershop,” an enclave that represents a particular context of culture necessary to gain entry. One account not like the others in content made it into a position of influence in the posttrial network. Simpson, Black Femininity and Sexuality: black women cannot show off their bodies in anyway because it is perceived as slutty. Some witnesses reported the police attempted to confiscate their phones and footage of the incident, which led to more protests on- and offline. In addition, the culture of hashtag has developed due to recent Black Lives Matter movement. What does this look when it extends into video games as alternative form of activism? The trial network also included BET News and BET accounts, which became central to the network for reporting on the case. Together, members of the #TrayvonMartin network argue that the fate that befell Martin, Till, and those in between reflects the glaring continuation of anti-Black violence and supremacy. TWiB! Despite the Florida “stand your ground” law that Zimmerman’s defense successfully used, Alexander was found guilty of aggravated assault with a lethal weapon and sentenced to twenty years in prison. Steele carefully frames this as “Digital Black Feminism,” building on literatures of black oral culture, alternative publics, black feminism in response to exclusion, and voice and democratic participation. The most popular account, with nearly twice the retweets and mentions of any other account in the network, belonged to Jeff Weiner, a central Florida journalist who live-tweeted the trial from inside the courtroom (@JeffWeinerOS, with 2,094 retweets and mentions). One person anonymously submitted footage to local television station KTVU, which broadcast the unedited video and later posted it to YouTube. But also your employees can use the same hashtag to share their work experiences, making your company more … Maria Roach created a MoveOn.org petition on March 17 that eventually received 500,000 signatures. Some people are upset that she masqueraded as a Black woman and profited financially and socially from that; some people are flattered that a white woman so immersed herself … While initially the story was framed as a personal one in an effort to construct Trayvon Martin as a legitimate victim, and African American celebrities and sympathetic mainstream journalists and commentators were centered in the network, eventually the story evolved into one in which the very concepts of legal justice and criminal liability were debated at both the local and national level, and then into a story in which Trayvon Martin became a cipher for larger critiques of widespread anti-Black violence and systemic inequality. In May and June, the hashtag was tweeted an average of 3.7 million times a day. These tweets, along with ongoing commentary about the Zimmerman verdict, yielded several thousand tweets per day, in our sample, until the end of July 2013, when the pace slowed to between several dozen and around one hundred tweets per day. Together they make a case for a movement for Black lives. Seeing this as Liquid Journalism (Bruns 2010, Deuz 2006) suggests that the contributors can be involved in the production of news around these tragedies in how they choose to react to the coverage. The praxis requires that we strive to be fully engaged in that work. In response to a tweet that received less than ten retweets in which Robert Zimmerman said, “Commemorate #TrayvonMartin NE way U like, but don’t slander my brother #GeorgeZimmerman in the process,” dozens of members of the #TrayvonMartin network responded with critiques of the logic of the tweet, critiques of Zimmerman’s general defense of his brother, and pure outrage at the circumstances of Martin’s death. An activist orientation in video gaming will require: Gamers for Change, Game Developers for Change, and Game Culture for Change. Within a week of Martin’s murder, Twitter users were comparing the case with that of Grant. A lone hashtag might not look very mighty, but when used en masse, the symbols can become incredibly powerful activism tools. Tweets containing #TrayvonMartin continued to appear at a rate of approximately 30 to 100 per day until the following February, when several thousand tweets appeared on February 5, 2014, the day that would have been Trayvon Martin’s nineteenth birthday. With the increasing popularity of the hashtag, more and more people were able to see posts about individuals’ experiences as a person of … Because of their high number of retweets, these two parody accounts occupy unusually central positions in the network, in this way more closely resembling the accounts of journalists and celebrities (such as @andersoncooper, @TherealTaraji) than other parody accounts, which tend to appear along the periphery of the network. Tap on the Hashtags to view more related famous hashtags to let your next post a boost. We mark the digital documentation and activism around Grant’s January 2009 killing by Bay Area Rapid Transit police as a starting point for contemporary digital racial justice organizing. produces seven different podcasts on a range of topics, and they get over a million downloads a month of their main program. The citizen-recorded video footage of the defenseless King being brutally beaten by four white LAPD officers spread quickly through national and international television broadcasts after being sent to local news station KTLA. Top 100 Hashtags on Instagram with the total number of posting on Instagram. Here we see the ways Twitter users and their networks concerned with ongoing instances of anti-Black violence locate themselves within larger histories of the Black freedom struggle and activism. If a dead unarmed teen and an angry racist with a smoking gun is too subtle a clue, what isn’t?” From the Combs and Maher tweets we see how the network valued both action and outrage in relation to Martin’s murder. Of the top 100 co-occurring hashtag combinations, more than half — 55 — included the names of other African Americans killed by police violence or by white Americans. For example, in addition to the network data described above, we also captured a ranked list of the most common hashtags appearing in tweets with #TrayvonMartin during our data collection window. The #BlackLivesMatter hashtag on Instagram has been overrun by people posting black squares on Blackout Tuesday. Hashtags were created by Twitter as a means of organizing content and now are found on many social media channels like Google+, Tumblr, Pinterest, Instagram and others. For example, @BritiniDWrites tweeted, “Dear @IamDiddy a FL man MURDERED a Black teen named #TrayvonMartin in Feb & still isn’t arrested. Similarly, hashtags were used for the #MeToo social movement. For example, users quoted Cooper’s last two tweets and followed up with their own exclamations, such as the snarky “of course!” and “of course he did, he was paid to!”. She thinks this may represent an example of Michael Schudson’s “monitorial citizenship,” perhaps as “monitorial journalism” whereby these citizen journalism tools stand in opposition to mainstream journalism. This new on-site reporting was a result of receiving tweets from their audience, saying they didn’t trust the mainstream media coverage of Ferguson and wanted the TWiB! TWiB! The NAACP followed up on its first tweet with an actionable one, asking those in the network to continue to “seek justice for #TrayvonMartin” by signing a petition asking for a Department of Justice inquiry, while @YourAnonNews levied a critique of the trial, tweeting “#TrayvonMartin was put on trial, in effect, for his own murder and found guilty,” while also sharing the Trayvon Martin tribute song released by Yasiin Bey, Dead Prez, and Mikeflo. Many are curious what the very first hashtag was and how it spread quickly across the internet. #CultureTags™ is a spirited game that will test just how well you know the culture. Also notable is that while the first two tweets reproduced here were largely shared (by retweets) and responded to (by replies) affirmatively in the network, the responses to and shares of the last two tweets were often corrections or proclamations re-centering racism as a cause for the crime against Martin and casting dispersion on the Zimmerman team. @AC360 8p, 10p.” Notably, the latter tweet received only about one-tenth the response of Cooper’s first-person, “What I question …” tweet, reflecting the prioritizing in the network of news narratives that legitimized Martin’s victimhood and connected it directly to racism. Complicated allegiances are in tension with white feminists. From the popularity of Anderson Cooper in the network we can see how the counterpublic selected which types of mainstream news narratives and frames about anti-Black violence to spread and support. The linking of these cases, which span nearly sixty years, also indicates the role that collective memory plays in contemporary digital racial justice spaces. Although President Obama himself never tweeted about Trayvon Martin, on July 19, 2013, his remarks about Martin were heavily quoted and linked by other Twitter users. … For example, your own talent brand team can post photos and updates and use your company hashtag. Trayvon Martin’s murder was initially covered, briefly, in local media outlets. Black Lives Matter was started by three queer women of color. Over time, #TrayvonMartin transformed from a signifier of Martin himself to a symbol of the broader condition of racial bias and injustice in America. From Standing Rock to Syria, drones are being used to hold the powerful to account. The ongoing visibility of the hashtag on Twitter is an example of how the narratives constructed by particular publics are lasting and how particular stories carry symbolic weight even when the events lie in the past. @AC360 8p, 10p.” In this tweet, Cooper calls for reflection and response from his mainstream audience and shares his own perspective, framing the crime against Martin as one based in racial animus while still preserving the luster of objective journalistic inquiry. And the images contribute to the depiction of a broad spectrum of the elements of black lives mattering, and we should be seeing them as a whole, not just good and bad. Because TWiB! Florini sees TWiB! Just get through as many answers as possible before your time runs out! 1.2m Posts - See Instagram photos and videos from ‘blackculture’ hashtag The #SolidarityIsForWhiteWomen hashtag was created by black feminist blogger / author Mikki Kendall in response to the Twitter comments of male feminist Hugo Schwyzer, a critique of mainstream feminism as catering to the needs of white women, while the concerns of black feminists are pushed to the side. This panel features four anti-racist, feminist scholars, showcasing how we as researchers take on the role of documenting and amplifying the work that activists are doing already online. The largest of the three networks in our sample, despite spanning the shortest time frame, the precharges network includes 114,431 tweets generated by 83,588 users connected by 109,070 retweets and mentions in our sample. Would they tear me down or build me up? Both promised to donate $1 to the (at the time nonexistent) #TrayvonMartin Foundation for every retweet received, and as a result, both rapidly gained followers and retweets before Twitter users realized the promises were hoaxes. In less than twenty-four hours, Lauren and her network had successfully created enough pressure and negative press that the agent tweeted that the deal was over. The juxtaposition of the treatment of Marissa Alexander, who had been physically threatened by her husband and who physically hurt no one, with that of George Zimmerman was used in the network to point out the inconsistent ways in which laws are applied to Black and white victims and defendants. Similarly, hashtags were used for the #MeToo social movement. Although Twitter had a formal policy against such parody accounts and hoax tweets at the time, it was not until 2013 that the platform introduced mechanisms for easily reporting fake accounts and content. Users became relatively more savvy over time about identifying hoaxes, and consequently hoax accounts were less influential in the discourse during the trial network than they were previously. Here we extended the collection of tweets from the beginning of the Martin story’s visibility through the years following Zimmerman’s acquittal. © 2020 MIT Center for Civic Media – All rights reserved, Powered by – Designed with the Customizr theme, Religious Hashtags, Memes, and Apps Online: AOIR 16 Liveblog, Online Vigilantes, the Wikipedia GamerGate Controversy, Ethics of Bots at AOIR 16, Racialized Smoking: smoking behavior by blacks is demonized versus seen as cool among whites, Racialized Drinking: blacks drinking expensive champagne is improper, whereas it’s marketing when drunk by whites, Racialized Hands: black people are perceived as showing gang signs whenever they gesture with their hands, Everyday Racism and Black Masculinity: black military members are upstanding citizens in uniform, but prompt the locking nearby car doors when in their civilian clothes, Fearful Black Masculinity: non-smiling black men are criminals you should be afraid of, and so the media finds the angriest photo to depict me, Media Bias and Colorism: the media favors darker skin as scarier, like in the TIME covers of O.J. Here we see a shift away from the individualized framing of Martin as child victim popular in the pretrial network and the legal details that were of interest in the trial network. The top 20 most retweeted accounts included those of Martin’s mother, Sybrina Fulton (@SybrinaFulton), the Martin family lawyer, Benjamin Crump (@attorneycrump), the journalist Anderson Cooper (@andersoncooper, @AC360), and Black celebrities, including Gabrielle Union, Taraji P. Henson, Tichina Arnold, and Diddy Combs. Responses to the Robert Zimmerman’s tweet ranged from “@rzimmermanjr slander? Hashtags are now used regularly by millions of social media users, especially among members of the largest micro-blogging community Twitter. was even able to intervene in mainstream news coverage by standing in opposition to it and framing their work as such—notably in the case of CNN’s silence. 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