Getting people engaged in broadband – humor, Haikus, videos and selfies

Two things that can make telecommunications policy difficult care about? It’s geeky. It’s boring. John Oliver nailed both of these facts in his rant on Net Neutrality earlier this month. And he got folks interested – and engaged.

Rumor has it the response to his invitation for viewers to comment to the FCC on Net Neutrality shut down the servers! If watching the video inspires you, you should comment.

Media Justice is also garnering attention and providing a platform to engage citizens in telecom policy by announcing a Internet Twitter Haiku rally and Save the Internet selfie campaign. They will aggregate response to their campaigns to demonstrate interest to policymakers.

Here’s more on Media Justice’s work from an email I received today…

Last week, we put the call out for haikus on why the Internet matters to you, and they have been flooding in ever since. Thank you!Read some of them here.  Want to join in on the fun? It’s still not too late to submit your haiku.  Write one and post it on twitter using the hashtag #InternetHaiku OR e-mail it to

If writing’s not your thing, here’s another way you can join the fight to Save the Internet. …

We want to show the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) whose voices they should be thinking about as they decide the future of the Internet.  Join members of the Media Action Grassroots Network in an Instagram action we’re calling “Selfies to Save the Internet”.  Here’s how it works:

  1. Grab a sheet of paper.  Write a message to the FCC that begins, “We need REAL net neutrality….” Need some help with what to say? Check out some images that have already come in.
  2. Take a selfie!
  3. Post your pic on Instagram or Twitter using the hashtag #FCCNetNeutrality OR email it to

Share your image by July 8th and we’ll organize them into a visual set of comments and submit them into the public docket at the FCC.

Like what we’re doing? Consider supporting our work with a donation.

It’s a fun way to get people involved. Once involved, I think they will be more open to trying understand telecom policy. Videos like John Oliver’s will help but so will interactive sessions such as the one planned for June 30…

On June 30th, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler will participate in an event organized by Media Literacy Project, a member of the Rural Broadband Policy Group.

“Nuestras Voces/Our Voices: A Youth Dialogue with FCC Chairman Wheeler” will be held in Albuquerque, but you can still add your voice.

Here’s how you can participate:

  1. Are you in or near Albuquerque? Join us in person – find out more here
  2. Set up a watch party. Use this link to watch live with your friends. Tune in at 5:30 p.m. PT, 6:30 p.m. MST, 7:30 p.m. Central, 8:30 p.m. ET
  3. Join the conversation. Tweet questions and comments to @medialitproject and use the hashtag #OurVoicesNM. Or call 505-858-8897 before June 30 and leave a message with your thoughts on the fight to save the Internet.
  4. Submit a video testimonial. Encourage young people you know to submit one-minute videos before June 30 to

I encourage folks – especially in rural areas – to lend their voices to the effort. If you create a video testimonial, please feel free to share it here too. I’d be happy to help lift your voice in support of better broadband!

This entry was posted in Digital Divide, Policy by Ann Treacy. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ann Treacy

Librarian who follows rural broadband in MN and good uses of new technology (, hosts a radio show on MN music (, supports people experiencing homelessness in Minnesota ( and helps with social justice issues through Women’s March MN.

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