You can’t influence the narrative if you aren’t part of the conversation

Campaigns that do not engage with new social media risk losing control of the narrative.

I was alarmed to read that 15 minute cities are an evil plot to control society. But given everything that has happened in the last decade, not really surprised.

Back when social media was new, and mostly text and image based, we used to say that if you weren’t part of the conversation you would have others speak for you.

Eventually the environmental campaigning sector saw the benefits of social media. And text-based services like Twitter suited wordy, overeducated policy people.

Unfortunately things have moved on. The conversations are now taking place in spaces we do not occupy. I recently completed a quick review of campaigning taking place on newer social spaces, like TikTok, and it matches up pretty well with what this piece identifies.

We find “mostly scornful videos, including claims that the schemes will restrict residents’ movement and fine them for leaving their home districts” with slight adjustments depending on the policy, slightly different talking points for ULEZ for example.

When you look at the environmental campaigning sector they are either missing from these newer networks or are only making tentative steps in this direction.

History will most likely repeat and we’ll catch up by the natural process of relatively younger campaigners and comms people being recruited who are comfortable with newer services. But it wouldn’t hurt to help things along right now. Unless you want people to associate having amenities nearby with being under house arrest.