*”Scandal,” George Zimmerman‘s murder verdict, smartest (black) women on Twitter, fast-tailed girls and now the Michael Dunn murder trial all have one thing in common — they were powerful trends of Black Twitter that garnered mainstream attention!
Black Twitter has been the driving viral force behind some of the greatest social media triumphs and struggles for the black community in the areas that are social justice, politics, diversity, media and entertainment.
In the AP photo above, Black Twitter user Kimberly C. Ellis talks about the mighty subgroup on Twitter and how it adds a black spin on life at Freedom Corner in the Hill District of Pittsburgh on Aug. 11, 2013.
“It’s kind of like the black table in the lunchroom, sort of, where people with like interests and experiences, and ways of talking and communication, lump together and talk among themselves,” said Tracy Clayton, a blogger and editor at Buzzfeed known on Twitter as @brokeymcpoverty.
But Black Twitter can quickly turn social activist in a heartbeat — powered by catchy hashtags that dominate Twitter to express advocacy for the betterment of black folks.
For example, Black Twitter popularized the hashtag, #stopthefight in relation to George Zimmerman’s “celebrity” boxing match. After many Twitter complaints, the match was canceled.
The power of Black Twitter could be the perfect new civil rights strategy for black people.
“Ask the NAACP how long it would have taken had that been one of their initiatives,” Ellis said.
NAACP garnered attention for its hashtags #TooMuchDoubt about death row inmate Troy Davis and #OscarGrant whose life and death was the basis of the critically-acclaimed film, “Fruitvale Station.”
“We realized more than anyone that we had to go in that direction and we’ve done it,” NAACP interim President Lorraine Miller said of the NAACP’s social media use during a recent appearance on C-SPAN’s “Newsmakers” program.
Black Twitter as an entity isn’t a website, app or even a hashtag itself. Not all Twitter users who happen to be black participate in it and there are people of other races that do.
“Black Twitter brings the fullness of black humanity into the social network and that is why it has become so fascinating,” Ellis said.
Ellis has a doctorate in American and Africana Studies. She tweets as @drgoddess. Plus, she’s studying Black Twitter for her upcoming book, “The Bombastic Brilliance of Black Twitter.”
Last year, Black Twitter took over BuzzFeed, a news website focused on viral media and digital feedback to create content. As soon as BuzzFeed posted an article about Black Twitter following Zimmerman’s trial, users put their creative skills to use — creating BuzzFeed-type lists with black spins — trending #BlackBuzzFeed worldwide.
“Black Twitter made this the No. 2 hashtag worldwide. Our wig has thoroughly been snatched. (asterisk)Bows down(asterisk)” BuzzFeed acknowledged.
If anything is for sure #BlackTwitter is a force to be reckoned with — a new way to fight the power.
Read more at Yahoo News.