Insights

Guest post: Celebrating five years of @IndigenousX on Twitter

By Luke Pearson
Wednesday, 15 March 2017

@IndigenousX was created for one simple purpose - to help amplify Indigenous voices online.

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The idea was that we would do that through having a different Indigenous person each week take control of the account and tell their own story in their own words; talk about the things they wanted to talk about, not just about what other people wanted to hear from us. I hoped that this would help to break down the homogenous view that many still hold about Aboriginal people, and that traditional media in Australia hadn’t done much to challenge.

Twitter created a perfect space for these conversations with its fast paced, real time interactions and ability to engage, challenge, and promote issues that otherwise might get overlooked or misrepresented.

After five years I can safely say that we have achieved that, and much more than I ever expected as well.

We have helped promote important conversations, events, campaigns, and issues; helped raise over $400,000 for Indigenous projects via StartSomeGood; we have challenged racism from individuals, in media, government and institutions and educated countless thousands of people about the diversity and richness of Indigenous peoples and cultures; our partnership with the Guardian helped show other media outlets the importance of having Indigenous people telling Indigenous stories; our collaboration with Twitter helped to get many Indigenous tweeps their blue tick, and the recognition they deserve for all of their hard work and success.

@IndigenousX is acknowledged by many other rotating accounts as their inspiration for starting - @wepublichealth, @edutweetoz, @IndigenousXca and others.

More important to me than any of the tangible outcomes we have achieved though is the friendships and opportunites for sharing, learning and laughter that have grown from the account, for me and for many others out there across Australia and around the world - Indigenous and non-Indigenous alike. @IndigenousX has become a focal point for collaboration, for celebration, and for helping to challenge the status quo and to promote self-determination for Indigenous peoples.

It has been a humbling experience to have watched @IndigenousX grow, and it is an honour and privilege each and every week to see the new @IndigenousX host take up the mantle.

We’ve had Indigenous authors, artists, and academics, politicians and poets, musicians and mathematicians all host IndigenousX and all bring something unique from their perspective and experience to the table. More important then their qualifications though has been their humanity and their individuality, their willingness to share a part of themselves as Indigenous Peoples who stand up and fight for what they believe in.

It’s been an awesome five years, and I hope we will be around for many more to come. Thanks to everyone who has supported us over the last five years and wished us well on reaching this milestone.

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