Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Don’t Stay Silent: Ways To Get The Word Out.

March 29, 2017 by  
Filed under Opinion, Politics, Tech/Internet, Weekly Columns

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(ThyBlackMan.comOne of the biggest issues facing black men is their disengagement from the political system. This is not surprising, as it’s an issue that’s facing people from all demographics and backgrounds, but it hits the legions of disenfranchised black men (and women, to a lesser extent) particularly hard. This is the way that the elite of the country wants it to be. If people don’t think they have a voice, then they’ll stay silent. And they’ll be able to do whatever is they want to do (which is normally not in line with the interests of the urban poor) without being challenged. Here’s the thing, though: you do have a voice, and actually there’s more ways than ever for it to be heard. If you’ve got something important to say, then you have to stand up and say it. Here are a few of the ways you can get your opinion out there and become a voice in the political process.

A Social Media Following

Believe it or not, social media sites can be used for more than just sharing cat videos and listening to the ramblings of the political under informed. It’s not even just for your own personal page, which you might think is your only recourse on Facebook and the like to get your political views out there. If you’ve got something to say and can spend 10 minutes thinking of a catchy page name and logo, then you can set up a Facebook page and invite like minded people from across the country to follow you. You’ll undoubtedly start small, but if you post high quality opinions then you’ll eventually be found and have an army of followers.

Maintaining a Blog

A blog is one of the quickest and simplest ways to get the word out there. You can have one up and running in ten minutes. And from there, it’s all about spending time developing high quality articles that others will genuinely want to read. Because there are so many blogs out there, it’s best to find your niche and focus on that. For example, if you live in Detroit, then it would make sense to focus on one particular political issue that affects that city rather than engage in politics at a national level, which is a heavily saturated market. It can pay to create a top quality website and invest time into developing your name, as well as your SEO and other factors that will make your blog a success.

Contributing Essays

If you don’t want to spend the time developing your own blog, then you can always skip this step altogether and begin contributing articles and essays to high ranking sites. If you’ve got the appropriate writing chops, then it’ll just be a matter of taking the time to put down your well developed opinion into a concise, easy to read article and submitting it to the website for publication. If you write enough high quality articles, then you’ll soon be considered an expert on the topic – and that’ll open up a whole host of exciting opportunities that cannot be predicted!

Going to Print

If you’ve got a group of people who also want to change the world with their opinions, then you can also start your own magazine and take your opinion to print (magazines can also be online, too). You’ll need a few people to turn the idea into a reality, because setting and maintaining a magazine can be challenging. You’ll need magazine cover maker software, and a keen eye (or several pairs of eyes) for detail and design. However, once you’re under way you’ll find that niche magazines are really popular now – especially if you live in an area that is hot on political engagement.

Hosting Events

Sometimes, it’s not about writing down your opinions and hoping someone is there to read them. Sometimes you have to go directly to your audience and speak to them face to face. If you’re a naturally affable person, then hosting your own event that has the sole aim of getting the word out about a particular issue might be the way to go. It’s sometimes the way that people don’t actively seek out political issues, but are more than happy to engage when they’re presented with them. In this instance, face to face will work highly effectively.

Radio Talk

Radio was once thought to be close to death, but it’s come back in a big way. It’s not as difficult as you’d think to use your voice to get the word out, either. You can start your own radio show, or you can jump on the bandwagon of podcast popularity and offer weekly installments where you talk about the issues that matter most to you. Absolutely anyone can have a runaway podcast success if they have quality content.

The Power of Video

The internet had already gone pretty crazy for videos over the past few years, and that shows no signs of letting up anytime soon. If you can create snappy videos with an easy to understand message, then they’ll become highly shareable. If you’re able to get enough views, then traction will grow and so you will the amount of people you’re able to reach. YouTube is the most obvious platform for this, but also look at Vimeo and don’t forget to get it on Facebook and Twitter and the like.

Working With Groups

Alone we fall, together we stand. If you feel particularly passionate about a political issue, then there’s every chance that there are others out there who feel the same way. Why not try to seek them out and add your voice to their collective? They’ll probably already have the resources in place to give you a platform to speak your mind, and if they don’t then you can help build that platform with the help of others. Don’t ever doubt that a small group of committed citizens can change the world; it’s the only thing that ever has, as Margaret Mead taught us.

Staff Writer; Steve Rogers

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