Marginalized Communities’ Relationships with Social Media
Social media are powerful platforms that create echo chambers, especially for vaccine discourse. Each platform has its own strength and weakness but ultimately are meant to connect people and information.
Below is an analysis of the relationships black, indigenous, and people of color communities (BIPOC) have with social media, especially in terms of health information-seeking behavior.
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Compared with half of White users, approximately 7:10 Black, Hispanic and Asian users view social media as somewhat effective in changing people’s minds about political or social issues.

Marginalized Communities (BIPOC, elderly, disabled)

    Social media enables the broadening of marginalized communities’ social networks.
      Both of similar and dissimilar communities.
      A specific focus seems to be on engaging with dissimilar communities.
    There is a stronger trust built with similar communities, i.e. those that have similar appearances and/or experiences.
    Less education = limited access to reliable internet connectivity and technology.
      Disproportionally affects Black and Hispanic communities.
    Social media has dual faces:
      Place for support
    Video testimonials are effective messaging vehicles.
      Particularly effective in Hispanic communities.
Themes related to public health and healthcare
    General sense of distrust in large organizations.
    Overarchingly low health and technology literacy percentages.
    Language barriers: translators not always available and Google Translate is not good enough.
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Social media usage varies by age among Black Americans.

BIPOC Specific

    Black social media users are more likely than other BIPOC backgrounds to engage with political action via social media.
      Higher percentage of belief in messages’ efficacy via social media.
      Hispanic belief is similar though at a lower percentage, followed by Asian Americans.
      Young BIPOC (18-49): higher likelihood of using social media than 50+.
    Black & Hispanic groups believe social media helps them find like-minded communities.
    8:10 BIPOC users believe social media’s efficacy in magnifying important and unnoticed issues, and representing marginalized groups.
    Young BIPOC are the biggest consumers of websites created by and for people of color.
    Young BIPOC individuals with less socioeconomic resources consume more online media sources than BIPOC individuals with more resources.
    Sources for increasing visibility of relevant issues and support:
      Black Twitter
      Black Youth Project
    LinkedIn is not a trusted social media source for Black users due to a history of BIPOC related content being removed without explanation.
Themes related to public health and healthcare
    Feel as if they receive different (poorer) treatment.
    Sense of distrust, feeling like guinea pigs.
    Translated materials don’t resonate with audiences.
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Black social media users tend to view social media favorably and as personally important and/or effective for political activism.

Last modified 5mo ago