Is social media a tool for social justice, if not can it become one?

Today social media is dominating all the major narratives from climate change awareness to the latest edition of the Paris fashion week. In a world so dependent on social media as a medium of exchanging information it has become a platform or artists, media agencies and individuals to express themselves. The ability to virtually engage in conversations and put out their concerns has made social media a platform for social justice too. The platforms are used by people to start out campaigns in support of key issues like mental health , sexual assault and anything that is stemming from a personal or non-personal experience. It is also seen as a platform to seek justice individually. The victims often see it as a medium to share their story and expect some form of justice. But the issue remains with what is considered justice? Is justice sought with the validation received for sharing a story, is it the beginning of a new movement, is it the perpetrators of crime being called out or is it punishment actually carried out .

Another aspect of this is the correlation between judiciary and social media. A new dimension that social media has provided us with is the awareness it creates. It brings to light all the un-reported crimes, all those fears that people have had to deal with alone. However its a two-fold situation thought it provides an accessible medium at the same time there is a lack of accountability. The social media platform cannot deliver justice , that power still lies with the state machinery , so is there any active social justice ? Though it promotes freedom and instills a sense of self love and standing up for yourself at the same time it does not lead to any active change. The presence of toxicity and a possibility of judgments being passed around by random individuals always looms over so whether there is a free space or not is debatable. The active link between social media and social justice needs to be created for a more direct impact and tangible change. There needs to be a mechanism that should be developed that would promote social media to become a process of achieving social justice. Social justice comes in many forms and all forms of wrongs need to be realised and understood as a precursor to gaining any form of social acceptance for the cause . Social media sensitization is also imperative to prevent it from changing lives for worse than good. These are all very fluid concepts but it is our space and every second there is something happening in it and actions needs to be taken on issues that may seem of others but can be ours too. Whether it in its current form tool of justice or not is not clear but with necessary capacity building measures in place it can if not fully , at least partially act in the capacity of a tool of social justice.

Uddeshya Delhi is the newest chapter of the nationwide and youth-run organisation, Uddeshya. Our motto is, 'Empowering Youth, Fueling Change'.