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TikTokers Who Use Their Platforms to Make Change Offline

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When the video began racking up views, Joshi made the doc public, urging her followers to share it with their group members. With simply two months earlier than the 2020 presidential election, Joshi was determined to make a distinction and assist get Trump out of workplace. And she or he did. “Folks informed me they had been utilizing my doc throughout phone-banking calls in Georgia and Michigan and Pennsylvania,” Joshi says. “One individual particularly used it for 3,000 calls in Georgia.”

When Joshi began faculty on the College of California, Berkeley, she was a neuroscience main. She didn’t really feel her true passions — for the atmosphere and politics — might ever work out as a profession. However as her movies went viral and she or he discovered her doc was used for phone-banking in swing states, she felt one thing shift. “I had been convincing myself I couldn’t make a distinction,” she recollects. “All of that began to fizzle away, all my fears and doubts of my very own capabilities.” 

Joshi says she now is aware of she will be able to make a distinction by way of digital organizing, and she or he’s restructured her life plans accordingly. None of this is able to have occurred, she says, with out TikTok.

Sofia Ongele

Sofia Ongele, 21, grew up in Santa Clarita, California, the place an area councilman referred to as himself a “proud racist” when she was 9. She considers that incident one of many a whole lot of moments in her life which have led her to the place she is now. Ongele, who’s Black, says she appears like she has no selection however to be engaged in politics as a member of a marginalized group.

In the course of the summer season of 2020, as COVID raged, Sofia did what so many individuals her age did: She turned to TikTok. Information protection of the deaths of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and George Floyd was in all places, and Ongele was devastated. Within the first video she made, she says, she was simply crying. “From Rodney King till now, nothing has occurred to cops that kill Black individuals or hurt Black individuals for apparently no cause,” Ongele says. She felt like she was screaming into the void, however then the void began listening and speaking again. 

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