Clicktivism: Effective or Not?




Being leaders of the 21st Century, there are so many ways for us to bring change. The world of technological advancement enables us to explore in so many ways to bring real change. Online petitions currently are a great hit with the youth and our generation. Many websites, such as,, and not to forget one of the most popular sites for students, have reached high numbers of online signatures over the past few years. The reason being is that it’s more accessible, quick and convenient for not only the younger generation, but also the older generation that wants to explore new ways of doing things.

However, some critics say that online petitions have no value and make no difference. They are just there and have no audience from the government. According to Andy Levy-Ajzenkopf on his blog (which can be found here: charity village), online petitions in Canada are not even seen by the government. They do not accept non-written petitions and must have hard copy documentations of all the signatures.

This can’t be said about the United States, where the web world has taken its great turn of impacting policies. Google and Wikpedia according to the Washington Post have aquired more than 4.5 MILLION online petitions, which one of them was signed even by me, to take a stand on the SOPA legislation that wanted to be passed to have internet censorship, which many felt violated their rights and freedom. This made a huge impact and resulted in 300,000 emails that were send to Congress men and women. The bill was fortunately pulled by Congress due to all the critics and online petitioning had its great impact.

Therefore, one has to ask what new ways the internet world can effect our policing world. However, one has to consider the big names, such as google and wikipedia, who have put the petition on their site, where thousands of people log on to daily or even hourly. Technology and the advancement of today never fails to amaze me.

What do you think?

Is it effective or not?

What can be done better?

Where can it be implemented or not?

One Response to “Clicktivism: Effective or Not?”

  1.   llawson Says:

    I think that online activism is perhaps more successful than the petitions themselves. Personally, I think the largest impact these online petitions have is drawing interest that is then translated to action outside of the digital world. Even if only a few people react this way, the relatively low effort and cost for online efforts makes it worth it. I know that personally, even if I don’t sign the petition, I am much more likely to research the issue to see what it is about and from there I make a decision on how to get involved. Activism and awareness certainly can’t be overlooked as well, even if active physical involvement is not achieved. For example, we could look at the online movements to combat rape culture, Islamaphobia, Heterosexism, genderism, and mental health education – these changing attitudes on a widespread nature are in some ways worth more than a single physical contribution in the real world. Overall, I think it is an avenue worth pursuing and research into how to make such methods more effective could go a long way.

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