Kony 2012

Kony 2012

A social campaign, thrust upon the world by its author Jason Russell,  to capture Joseph Kony has gone viral , gaining over 38 million views insince March 5th 2012 (just 4 days! ) However, the video has also drawn in a host of criticisms ranging from its finances to its fundamental objectives.

The 30 minute video is aimed at raising awareness of Joseph Kony, head of the Lord’s Resistance Army, who is wanted by the international criminal court for crimes against humanity and 33 other charges.

Taking the video on face value it is an emotionally stirring plea that utilises the power social media can wield to aid the work of Invisible Children, an apparent non-for profit organisation, and its efforts in Africa.  However, the video and the charity that organised it have come under scrutiny, an all too often side effect of publicity, for their accuracy and portrayal of the conflict.

Take for example Yale political professor Chris Blattman who criticises the group’s use of merchandise as well as being more about the film makers themselves than the conflict itself. The group has been also criticised for being misleading about its staff salaries, travel and film production costs, especially  as a non-for-profit organisation (source).

More opposing views can be found here at http://stream.aljazeera.com/story/kony2012-and-its-critics-0022087

The film however is a reminder that social media does have the power to bring a message to the world, very quickly. Whatever the case may be a lot more people are talking about invisible children.

Thanks to Jack Lawton for taking the featured image (camera’s are just not durable!)

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