With different topics such as the coronavirus pandemic, the Black Lives Matter movement, and the climate crisis garnering international attention throughout 2020 and 2021, a new study has found that young people are increasingly feeling more confident about sharing their opinions online.
The study, which surveyed young people aged from 11 - 25 and was conducted by the community organisation Conscious Youth, found that 71% of young people feel more confident than ever before to speak up about causes they are passionate about online. Additionally, 55% of those surveyed said that they regularly shared their opinions on social media.
When asked why they feel more confident in expressing their opinions, 75% of respondents said that seeing other people sharing their views online made them feel empowered to do the same.
Half of the respondents believed that they should be able to post about whatever they want on their social media accounts, and 47% thought that it is important to express support for causes that you are passionate about online.
Contrastingly though, 51% of those polled said that they are hesitant to post their opinions online due to worries about spreading false information, while 32% said they are nervous about others knowing their personal views.
Results from the poll found that the most important issues for young people include:
Black Lives Matter (83%)
LGBTQ+ rights (51%)
Climate change (37%)
Sophie Simpson, co-founder and CEO of Conscious Youth stated: ‘It’s inspiring to see so many young people standing up for the causes they care about and being aware of the platforms they have’.
Simpson added: ‘I think that the movements caused by the death of George Floyd and the murder of Sarah Everard in the past 12 months have made the younger generation so much more empowered to speak up and share their opinions and experiences. Social media platforms have completely changed the way social movements form and grow’.
Serena Johnson, co-founder and CEO of Conscious Youth said: ‘Social media is a vital part of life for many young people, it’s inspiring to see them using these platforms to express their opinions on the issues which impact them. Youth activism is surely on the rise and we are yet to see more young leaders driving change in our communities’.
For more information about the study conducted by Conscious Youth, click here.