The Invisible Children organization has set the internet ablaze this week with their newest KONY 2012 video — which went viral on YouTube, Twitter and Facebook — and has succeeded in its goal of making African war criminal, Joseph Kony, famous. From celebrity backers — Oprah, Kim Kardashian, Ryan Seacrest, and Rhianna to name a few — Twitter updates, long winded Facebook rants, and critical assessments by Yale sociology professors, everyone is talking about it; and the reaction has been both good and bad.
The positive feedback to the video revolves around the Invisible Children organization raising awareness for the country of Uganda, bringing attention to the need to arrest and bring to justice one of the worst war criminals the African continent has ever seen. The major critics of the movement have been talking about the organizations monetary spending practices, issues of neo-colonialism, and their posing with weapons and members of the Sudan Peoples Liberation Army.
Whether you agree/disagree with their practices, (how it’s taken them 7 years to create a viral video is baffling) people are missing out on a tangible system they’ve put in place to track real-time attacks, raise awareness, and educate people in Africa: The LRA Crisis Tracker.
Here is a video introduction to the project:
“The LRA Crisis Tracker is a real-time mapping platform and data collection system created to bring an unprecedented level of transparency to the atrocities of the Lord’s Resistance Army. Using information sourced from Invisible Children’s Early Warning Radio Network, UN agencies, and local NGOs, this tool allows for better response from governments, policy-makers, and humanitarian organizations.”
The LRA Crisis Tracker showcases information surrounding the conflict, aggregated in one place, and made publicly available for the first time. This map is an excellent tool being used to educate people around the globe about the continuing violence in Uganda.
My recommendation: before blindly supporting an organization without all the facts, or condemning them for the same reason, check out what they’re all about. Do some research and read some news articles, because let’s face it, everyone everywhere has an agenda. It’s about picking the right one to support that counts, and no matter what, Invisible Children has brought worldwide attention to a very serious and heinous problem in Africa, and everyone can agree the world would be a much better place without Joseph Kony in power.
Click here or the image below to explore the LRA Crisis Tracker:
via: LRA Crisis Tracker