Facebook And the Alliance of Youth Movements Summit

-FARC Protest Image-This morning Jared Cohen, a member of the U.S. Secretary of State’s Policy Planning Staff, posted an article on Facebook’s blog. In it he covers something which I covered back in March, the creation of a group on Facebook to protest the FARC. This movement, that was created on Facebook, has been used as a case study for how social technology can impact the world. It also highlights the destruction of bureaucratic barriers between governments and citizens. As Cohen writes, “This really was a new wave of civil society in which there were no offices, government grants, or forms that needed to be filled out and filed for the establishment.”

This morning I had the privilege to sit in on a panel for the Washington, D.C. Economic Partnership, in which everybody in the room was excited about two things: the new administration’s full embrace of technology, and how social technology is transforming the political realm. It is no longer required for a group of people to get together in a room and make change happen.

Instead individuals can now create groups on social networks (especially Facebook) and the ideas of those groups spread virally. In a globally interconnected world, we all learn from each other and in the case of Oscar Morales, who created the group which led to the protest against the FARC, we have no doubt learned some valuable lessons.

Inspired by this change, “Facebook, Access 360 Media, Columbia Law School, Google, Howcast, MTV, YouTube, and the U.S. Department of State are bringing leaders of 17 pioneering organizations from 15 countries together with technology experts next month for the first-ever conclave to empower youth against violence and oppression through the use of the latest online tools. ” The event is called the Alliance of Youth Movements Summit.

We are in the midst of a tectonic shift as the barriers between government and citizens are eliminated, and this new administration will be part of leading the charge. Check out the video below to learn more about the FARC protest via Facebook, or go learn more about the Alliance of Youth Movements Summit.

Image of FARC Protest taken by AP and provided by the BBC