Diverse, colorful and always fresh, the digital world has become our closest companion. It’s there from the moment we open our eyes in the morning to when we crawl back into bed at the end of the day.
Despite the fact it can be used for bad, the Internet thankfully isn’t all racism and bullying – there are plenty of great things happening within the thick net of terabytes that makes up the WWW.
The following six hashtags, top trending in the last year, are living proof that Internet users from around the globe can live together as one.
— Pray For Paris (@prayfor_paris) November 15, 2015
The Paris attacks shook the world in ways we will never forget. Nobody could have been prepared for the shock, the horror and the tragedy of this event, so of course, the Internet reacted.
While there were plenty of racist and insensitive comments aimed at Arab countries, there was also a deep sadness and quiet flooding through the web in the form of #PrayForParis. Citizens of the Internet came together to support the victims and their families, as well as innocent Muslims who condemned the act too. For some days following the attack, the world certainly felt kinder and more compassionate.
We are nothing without equality. We are nothing without love and freedom. Thank you for making the right decision, Supreme Court. #LoveWins
— Alex Goldschmidt (@alexandergold) June 26, 2015
It really does. In 2015, we saw this clearer than ever, when gay rights activists finally won a very important battle: the right to get married and celebrate their love legally.
A beautiful victory we’re still happy for, this shows how common reason, commitment and passion can make the Earth a better place for our children. #LoveWins regardless of gender orientation, religion, ethnicity or nationality!
— Julianne Lagadec (@JulianneLagadec) February 23, 2016
Hippies said it loud and proud in the 1960s: Make Love, Not War. Now, it’s Millennials’ turn to pass on the message – through cyberspace, of course.
#NoHateSpeech is one of the most powerful and meaningful hashtags ever created – especially in a world collapsing under its own burden of hatred and inability to truly understand the differences in people.
The No Hate Speech Movement is here to stay, with more and more Internet users joining it to help put a stop to unkind behavior online. Cyberbullying is as real as it gets and it’s actually killing people – so it’s high time we put an end to it.
— The Youth Assembly (@YouthAssembly) February 17, 2016
Sexism is another pressing issue, affecting both men and women. #HeForShe was launched by actress Emma Watson as a UN campaign and quickly gained notoriety in social networking. As the name suggests, #HeForShe is dedicated to the support of men’s and women’s equality.
We often hear about sexism as if it belongs to women only – when, in fact, it belongs to all of mankind now and in the future. He and she should both fight for equality of the sexes, as this hashtag perfectly demonstrates.
Although this one wasn’t created for a campaign, #IAmJada quickly became the hashtag to use against rape. At first, this proclamation was how a teenage girl chose to reveal her identity as a rape victim. Soon enough though, people started identifying it as a sign of solidarity, and a tool to stand up to this horrific crime.
#IAmJada is full of meaning, and, in many respects, it’s a story in its own right – a story of rising above pain and trauma, growing stronger and making a better life for yourself.
Another term that holds a lot of power, discrimination is always under scrutiny. And yet, it still happens. Color-based, ethnicity-based and gender-based discriminations are all the more present in our everyday lives and sadly have people up against the wall for being born different.
March 1st is Zero Discrimination Day. Let’s show once again that #Discrimination is never OK under any circumstances. We are all humans. And we all deserve to be treated just as we would want others to treat us.