Commemorating a Genocide via Facebook
A project kicking off this week aims to use social media to commemorate the centennial of the Armenian Genocide. The 100 Years, 100 Facts Project will publish facts about Armenians twice a week, beginning April 24, 2014 and finishing April 24, 2015 – 100 years after the Ottoman empire began a massacre and forced deportation of Armenians. The facts will be published on the project website, 100years100facts.com, and publicized through social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Google+.
It’s an unusually sober topic for social media, which more often sees viral messages about brand missteps or season finale spoilers. The stated target audience includes the Armenian community, the Turkish people and the general public. Turkey, the successor state of the Ottoman Empire, denies the word genocide as an accurate description of the events that began in 1915. Nearly two dozen countries have officially recognized it as genocide, and most genocide scholars and historians accept this view.
The project team said they hope the undertaking will not only be commemorating a genocide via Facebook and other social media but also celebrate the Armenian nation, with facts about lives of famous Armenian individuals, Armenian Diaspora communities, and other elements of culture, including religion, language, literature, and sports and entertainment.
“The idea of using social media and the internet as a means to commemorate the Armenian Genocide and connect a population scattered around the world was inspirational to me,” said Lena Adishian, the project’s Los Angeles-based lead. The Los Angeles-area city of Glendale is home to one of the largest communities of Armenians outside of Armenia. “While curating one hundred facts about Armenia and Armenians is no easy task, we hope that audiences find the content educational and engaging.”