This text was a wild ride. By which I mean: the message contained in it was worth spending an hour deciphering a paper that, when stripped of the academic jargon, amounts to “it’s about the marketing, not the message.” This article makes an interesting intentional point, describing the importance of targeting rhetoric to have the largest impact on people in order to allow an idea to grow and thrive. Super important, especially when dealing with issues that affect the entire student body, like the way DPS communicates. In such a small tight-knit community, social contagion is everything. Activism only counts if people are listening, and if people are talking about it.
Which brings me to my second point. The article goes beyond the stated purpose, and highlights a very important factor through the use of its own rhetoric. This text is unreadable to anyone but academics, and even then it’s still not an easy task. This detail serves to make a likely untentional point- If no one can read or understand your message, your audience is going to be
Which, as the article says, is not the best way to keep an idea surviving and thriving. Though the article delivers a ridiculous amount of information, it does so in a way that is not conducive to Informing A Wider Audience or making the point “sticky.”
After reading this article I can definitely argue that, despite recent claims to the contrary, emotions are a key part of activism. So much can be accomplished through policy and requests, emails and meetings. The emotional marketing though, is what makes people care, it’s what gets people interested, and as any viral cat video can show you, people pay attention when something makes them Feel Emotions. Just like the virus cannot exist without the host and without spreading, the message will never be as effective as it needs to be until it is packaged in a way that people can personally connect with, a way that makes them want to spread the message and not just listen and forget. Humans thrive on emotion; it’s why controversial news stories get more attention, why heartwarming videos of children get millions of likes and shares, why Time published an emotional article about a machete wielding man attacking students at a small university. Emotion generates interest, and humans are social creatures. If you can make someone care about an issue, for personal or empathetic reasons, they will share the message with others. This is important to our issue because DPS has an impact on everyone. They interact with hundreds of students on a daily basis. DPS wants to help students; students want help from DPS. People care about this, and they will continue to care until the situation changes to benefit everyone involved.