Delicious DIRT. Make A Change. Get Involved. KONY 2012: Who, What, Where, When & Why. The Explosive Powers of Social Media

KONY 2012 via invisible.tumblr.com

If you haven’t seen at least something titled “KONY 2012” or “STOP KONY” these past couple of days, you might be living under a rock…or just are not an avid social media addict. If you actually have watched the video released by Invisible Children, you may have been completely moved and inspired like the large portion of social media-goers, but you most certainly have been beyond saddened and dismayed. Joseph Kony has been called the African Hitler and we feel inspired to help spread the word in an effort to stop him permanently in any way we can. In just a few short days the craze of KONY 2012 has gone through stages; skyrocketing to absolute super stardom via sites like Vimeo, Youtube, Facebook, and Twitter, with the video reaching to over 4 million views in just one day, to 58 million the next day, to a wave of skepticism for not only the cause, but also the organization. Here’s what you need to know (we’ll try to keep it short):

WHO: KONY 2012 is an international campaign by Invisible Children, a movement seeking to end the conflict in Uganda and stop the abduction of children for use as child soldiers, whose aim in the KONY 2012 campaign is to bring war criminal Joseph Kony to justice.

WHAT: The viral video (above) is what launched this craze. Invisible Children produced “Kony 2012,” a 30-minute film and campaign its says “aims to make Joseph Kony famous, not to celebrate him, but to raise support for his arrest and set a precedent for international justice.” It seems like a long time to watch a video, but just by watching it you will be clued into the social media storm that is surrounding it. Watch it here or scroll up.

WHERE & WHEN: The key phrase “Cover the Night” has been popping up everywhere. On April 20, 2012, the campaign is hoping that all of their efforts of awareness will culminate into one night, by putting up posters, stickers, and other items in locations around the world, hence “Cover the Night.”

WHY: So why is this such a big deal? After the typhoon of positive responses not only to the video, but also to the cause, now Invisible Children is facing criticism for their actions and methods as an organization, summed up quite nicely here by the Washington Post. There is a massive debate going on via the Internet, people sticking by the viral video and people who are exposing the questionable past of the organization.

The power of social media is beyond intense. In just one night, this campaign exploded online and, ideally, Invisible Children and the KONY 2012 campaign are starting to gain the awareness they were looking for. Now the other side to this lesson is to always do your research. And remember, the criticism for the Invisible Children and KONY 2012 campaign is not for the cause in which they are supporting, AKA the arrest of Joseph Kony, because there are no doubts that horrible things are happening, but the criticism is rather for the actions that Invisible Children is taking and has taken as an organization. Stay tuned for an update on both sides of this soon…

If you want to know more, and if you want to form your own opinion on the matter,watch the video. You can also find all the information about what is going on and exactly what KONY 2012 aims to do at their website or read up on their blog (where you can also read their response to recent criticism). Make a difference. Give back. Help. NOW

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