Save The Whales: A Guide to Social Media Success

Check out this 6 minute TED Talk by Alexis Ohanian, co-founder of Reddit, in which he uses a Greenpeace campaign to highlight strategies for success in social media. Although it was posted in 2009, it contains relevant information pertaining to digital rhetoric, the affordances of media, and the power of community. I thought his most interesting piece of advice (and the biggest lesson Greenpeace learned during its campaign) was that it’s ok to lose control. Once you post something online, you no longer completely own the message – and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Letting your audience “play” with your message can be risky, but as long as you’re clear about what you ultimately stand for, it can also be a very smart move. Greenpeace’s unintended Reddit audience took control of the message in a way that led to the creation of a movement and ultimately had political impact.


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