When it comes to race and ethnicity and social media engagement, African Americans are vastly outpacing their counterparts. African-American Internet users spent the most time on social networking sites compared to all other ethnic groups, according to a Social Media 2012 report from Nielsen and NM Incite. In July 2012, African Americans spent 8 hours and 7 minutes on social networks via their personal computers. They only came in second to Hispanic users when it came to mobile access to social media, with African Americans spending 8 hours and 20 minutes on the various platforms.
With Blacks at the helm of social conversations, BlackEnterprise.com takes a closer look at the top Black moments in social media:
Barack Obama – Four More Years
It was the photo that was seen around the world. Obama’s heartfelt hug with the First Lady was sent after his win in the November general election with the caption “FOUR MORE YEARS.” The photo instantly went viral, and became the most retweeted post of all time, surpassing 500,000 retweets.
Beyonce Joins Tumblr
Beyonce may not be a fan of Twitter (she’s only tweeted less than 10 times despite having over 6 million followers) but her Tumblr page, complete with glamorous shots, set the world on fire when it debuted in January of last year.
Burger King Pulls Mary J. Blige Commercial After Twitter Reaction
Burger King learned racial sensitivity the hard way after a commercial staring soul singer Mary J. Blige leaked to the Internet. The ad, which some on Twitter deemed offensive, featured Blige singing about fried chicken. It was pulled immediately after fervor from her fans followed the accidental release. Blige later went on to say that the she was “crushed” by the online reaction to the ad.
Barack Obama Does Reddit AMA
Fledgling link site Reddit claims to be the “front page of the Internet,” however it’s no holds-barred attitude and lax restrictions on “offensive” content has garnered the site controversy. Even so, Obama participated in an online discussion forum on the site, entitled “Ask Me Anything,” which crashed the site and gave Reddit a newfound notoriety.
Obama Says “This Seat’s Taken”
After actor Clint Eastwood made a somewhat comical mention of Obama as an empty chair during the Republican National Convention in 2012, the Obama team fired back with a simple, yet very effective photo. The pic featured Obama sitting in an executive chair with the caption, “This seat’s taken.”
The killing of Florida teen Trayvon Martin sparked fierce debate on social media. Activists showed their support for the slain teen by wearing hoodies in their Twitter avatar. #HoodiesforTrayvon became a trending topic and even garnered celebrity support from Jamie Foxx and The Miami Heat.
Spike Lee Posts Wrong Address on Twitter
Possibly inflamed by the killing of teen Trayvon Martin, Spike Lee posted what he thought was the address of accused killer George Zimmerman. It turned out to be an elderly couple’s home. Spike Lee’s tweet caused the two to flee their home due to death threats. The director has since settled with the family, however, his actions prompted a discussion on Twitter privacy laws.
Frank Ocean Comes Out on Tumblr
Def Jam signee and R&B artist Frank Ocean took a bold step by professing his bisexuality on blogging service Tumblr before his Grammy-nominated album release. The move garnered Ocean praise on social media and started online discussions about black male sexuality.
Michelle Obama Joins Pinterest
Pinterest’s popularity skyrocketed within the past year; however it received a dose of credibility when the First Lady joined the “pinning” service on Fathers Day 2012. Obama has gone on to be one of the most visible faces on the service, acquiring almost 50,000 followers.
Cory Booker Saves Dog
If Cory Booker is elected to The Senate, then he may have to credit Twitter in his victory speech. After a reporter tweeted to the Newark mayor about a dog freezing in record cold temperatures, the mayor took action, rescuing the pooch and placing him in a cop car, all while scolding its owners on Twitter.