February 22nd, 2008
We did this in Australia last week. Our parliament apologised on behalf of previous governments to Australia’s Indigenous Stolen Generations. We suggested to both our Facebook and MySpace friends that they change their status to “is sorry” on the day of the apology. Lots of people did, and as an added extra, hundreds of people joined our cause that day.
Excellent way to get an issue out in the public eye, and obviously in this case it benefited the folks encouraging people to do it. On the same article, also check out Briton Mark Pack’s comment on Facebook’s use in UK elections:
Using status in this way is a pretty common campaigning technique in the UK, though what’s become more popular here (at least in the Liberal Democrats) is changing your profile picture to a graphic that says you are backing / have voted for a particular candidate.
Also clever — clearly, this is a promising tool to help activists spread political messages. Facebook users are bombarded by tons of messages and group invitations, but even when they tune those out, they’ll still see their friends’ status and picture.