Well, we are winding down 2012. It’s a time for reflection of the time behind us and a time of anticipation of the time ahead of us. During the month of December, in the United States, people celebrate various holidays. Some that come to mind are Hanukah, Christmas and yes, Kwanzaa.
At this writing, this is the third day of Kwanzaa. Each year, I love seeing my friends post about the Seven Principles of Kwanzaa and reflect on what those princples mean. And as I am using social media more, I can see how social media can benefit from them.
1. Umoja (Unity)
The first principle, Umoja, speaks of unity with our fellow man. We can all agree that social media acts as a game changer in uniting others from all walks of life. From as entertaining as watching a tv show, to as thought provoking as shaping the outcome of an election, social media unites us in ways we would not imagine even ten years ago.
2. Kujichagulia (Self Determination)
Social media provides a platform to be heard. Components, that in the past came with a high cost to pay monetarily, are now available at a fraction of the cost. Social media allows others to have the ability to create and share in a space that was off limits just a few years ago. And with that space comes a drive to simply not want to give up.
3. Ujima (Collective Work and Responsibility)
Just as social media lends itself to help others fulfill their dreams and aspirations in reaching others, there is also a certain level of responsibilty that we can exhibit in assisting one another. We should also be responsible in using the power of social media to help the greater good.
4. Ujamaa (Cooperative Economics)
As we build communities through social media, it’s pretty fulfilling to see the economic support one can offer to another just from forming relationships online. The more formal term is networking, but there is a sense of cooperation that can impact so many. Social media has the means to serve as a tool to help accomplish this goal.
5. Nia (Purpose)
While social media is fun, we should be mindful that it should also serve some type of purpose. Whether it is to entertain, inform, educate, or edify others, what we provide to others in social media should have some thought behind it.
6. Kuumba (Creativity)
This priciple is one where social media absolutely shines. When I see how effective social media is used to bring creativity into our everyday lives, it’s pretty amazing. From admiring photography captured on Instagram, to watching a video hosted on YouTube, or communicating with your favorite author on Twitter, social media is bridging the creativity gap every day.
7. Imani (Faith)
This last principle shows that social media serves as a great way to help others strive for what they believe and to encourage others along the way. Through building online interactions and ultimately establishing offline relationships, social media’s role in connecting the dots in understanding one another is a powerful thing.
So, what ways do you see social media bringing change? Please leave a comment.
The Offial Kwanzaa Website — www.officialkwanzaawebsite.org