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Facebook’s Animal Rights Group Reaches 3 Million: Using Social Media for Animal Welfare

Facebook’s Animal Rights Group Reaches 3 Million: Using Social Media for Animal Welfare

These days it seems like everyone is trying to take advantage of the viral-marketing possibilties of social media and social networking websites. Even the pope is joining facebook! This week we saw a milestone in online animal activism: the animal rights cause on facebook has now reached 3 million members. Are you a member?

While this news does not mean anything directly for animal welfare, it’s an interesting landmark and a sign of the growth of our movement. Social media structures like this provide activists with an easy way to organize and quickly mobilize a large group of supporters to take action. With this facebook group you can send one quick message 3 million people who can sign a petittion, send an email to a politician or CEO, or donate to a particular cause.

That’s exactly what the the adminstrators of the animal rights cause on facebook are doing. They’re are asking their members to donate $3 each. If everyone did it, that would be $9 million. That’s a lot of money, but it’s also a little unrealistic to expect that all of the members would donate, especially in this economy.  Even if only 10% of people decided to donate 3 bucks, that’s still $900,000. That money could go a long way towards protecting animals.

Erik Marcus just posted an an article on this topic entitled, “Using Social Networking to Dismantle Agribusiness“. It’s a short piece that addresses social media as a tool for animal advocacy. Marcus is the author of Vegan: The New Ethic of Eating and he blogs daily at Vegan.com. His main point is that animal activists are still not using the the new topography of the internet to win victories for animals. He points out that we each now have an opportunity to communicate with a huge number of people with very little effort, but despite all of the vegan blogs, vegan video cast, and podcasts, we are still not keeping up with the corporate world.

For the most part, the animal protection movement is a matter of cultural change, right? We need make our lifestyles and our habits more animal-friendly. We need to stop eating animals and stop supporting companies that abuse animals. And we need to inspire others to do the same. That is how we’re going to end factory farming and animal testing. It seems like one of the best things we can do for animals is to get more messages of compassion for animals on websites like youtube, flickr, on digg and on twitter. The more people we have talking about animal protection on social media sites, the more our message will be heard.

What do you think? Where does social media fit into our movement?

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photo cred: http://www.flickr.com/photos/avalonstar/104526583/

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22 comments

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3:35PM PDT on Oct 23, 2009

I have eaten a mostly vegetarian diet for about 15 years (I admit to the occasional sushi outing). I also buy cruelty free apparel and footwear, and shun products and companies that test on animals. I would like to continue to practice responsible consumer habits. I have used PETA's guide to companies that test/don't test to be helpful. Many of the companies that don't test are also eco-friendly. I appreciate any updates or information on how to be kinder to the planet and to the other creatures who inhabit it!

7:12AM PDT on Jun 21, 2009

I would like to do more, maybe in my communitiy...send some info please...thank you

9:23PM PDT on May 31, 2009

I just read my post and I came across pretty illiterate. I should have typed "as ARE most individuals". I know this is petty but I am OCD about my spelling!

9:21PM PDT on May 31, 2009

I strongly support media attention when it comes to animal rights. I do everything I can to educate people including protesting and tabling at events but I am limited as is most individuals. The media, however, reaches millions of people and I think it should be used to the max. It is heartening to see that more and more attention is being given to animal rights by the media. There have been several specials on TV exposing factory farms and this week Bill Mahr talked about the suffering of animals. The animals cannot speak for themselves so we have to spread the word through any means possible.

11:51PM PDT on May 29, 2009

These beautiful creatures should not suffer because of us humans

1:54PM PDT on May 29, 2009

Use every channel to spread the word. I would try everything to help animals.

11:48AM PDT on May 26, 2009

I discovered Care 2 through fb's petition application! I'm a member of two vegetarian groups and I post a lot of animal and environment related articles on my page.

4:49PM PDT on May 25, 2009

We need your help in Hawaii. We have the most endangered marine mammal in the world living here and only endemic to Hawaii. That would be the Hawaiian Monk Seal. The numbers are declining due to marine debris, habitat encroachment, toxic runoff, and to add to all of those problems we now have a serial killer on the loose in Kauai. This person has murdered two seals, last week one of the few females in the species. This female was pregant with her 5th pup and the loss is devastaing to the people sworn to protect these creatures and to the future of the dwindling population. We will be posting a reward for information leading to the arrest of this maniac most likely through Crime Stoppers. My appeal to the public is that ANY information leading to the arrest of this individual will be most appreciated. You can contact NOAA at a toll free number 1-888-256-9840. Calls will remain anonymous. If you wish to make a donation you can also do so through NOAA until a fund is set up with Crime Stoppers. We only have about 1,000 seals left and lose over 5% a year. Losing one through human cruelty is gut wrenching. Please help save the Hawaiian Monk Seal. Mahalo

3:55PM PDT on May 25, 2009

Just joined Facebook today,if it helps any animals thats great by me! I always pass on petitions to everyone I know.If more people knew about this I'm sure it would help.

3:17PM PDT on May 25, 2009

Everyone can make a difference in saving animals from consumption /curtly. Let’s not judge animal rights groups they do what they can to help.

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