In the simplest terms, one could describe Black twitter as a mixture between the The Justice League and your top 5 stand up comedians all in one. This ,primarily black, group of twitter users are usually at the forefront of social issues affecting the black community and various minority groups. It’s the one group of twitter users that has been responsible for firings,suspensions, boycotts and powerful social movements all done through feisty, quick, hilarious and brutal mouthed tweets. So who is black twitter? if you’ve tweeted or re-tweeted on any of the events on the down page, tweeted on any show on channel 161 (Mzanzi magic) especially those aired on a Sunday evening , or used any of our South African politicians faces as a meme to describe the greatest or defeating moments in life, guess what? you are Black Twitter! And you have been apart of many social movements that fight for the respect, acceptance and justice that our rainbow nation desperately needs.
5 Times where twitter users were the greatest of all time (G.O.A.T).
- When African girls, couldn’t wear their natural African hair to school in Africa…
The #pretoriagirlshigh and #ZulaikhaPatel saga went viral on twitter when it was revealed that young black girls couldn’t wear their hair in its natural form without being subjected to discrimination and even punishments in South African schools. The wide spread comments and tweets fired up a social discussion that was long overdue, where schools nation wide were forced to revise their schools rules on appearance, ensuring they included black natural hair as HAIR that is accepted in schools.
2. When certain South Africans forgot that the government changed in 1994
Black twitter went ablaze when Penny sparrow’s racist Facebook status made rounds across the social network. In the status penny referred to black people as monkeys that made Durban a dirty and uncomfortable place to be in. Not long after the former real estate agent insulted the black community, Matt Theunissen went on a rant on government politics and finished it all up by calling all blacks Kaffirs who should go fuck themselves. These names went swirling around enough twitter users to issue charges on hate speech , resulting in community work for Matt and a hefty R 150000 fine for penny sparrow.
3. When a 22 year old promise, didn’t look promising
Free education is not a wish for South Africans but an actual promise made to the them by the ANC government when it came into power. Last year students took the government to task on their promise of free and decolonized education, the restless youth felt no efforts had been made over the past 22 years to realize that reality. The #feesmustfall movement virtually happened on twitter from its initiation to the mass garnering tweets that coordinated nation wide student protests. The movement did manage to cap yearly fee increases and improve labor agreements between universities and their staff… the free education part of all of it seems to have taken a back seat though…
4. When it spotted a statuary rapist celebrating his marriage
The day Sunday night “Mzanzi Magic and chill” went south. A seemingly innocent episode of Our Perfect Wedding went sour when a the groom openly spoke on how he courted his wife to be when she was 14 and he was 28, he lightly added on details on how he used to date and sleep with multiple young girls before he decided to settle down with his young wife. Black twitter didn’t take merrily with many feeling that airing this episode further perpetuates and encourages statutory rape. The uproar lead ABSA Bank to pull out its sponsorship for the show and a case of statutory rape opened against the man.
5. When an economist thought 23 years of democracy was enough to fix over 300 years of colonialism
Well known economist and investment strategist Chris Hart, bit a lot more than he could chew when he tweeted that victims of apartheid are becoming more entitled and have a growing hatred towards minority groups, this was around the time when Penny Sparrow had her backlash. This was summed up as- a white privileged man- who felt black South Africans should just eat cake- by twitter users, and the trending began. Twitter users did not just criticize the economist they went on to find and check his academic record, which showed that Chris had not studied economics in any higher education. Many felt the economist didn’t comprehend the economic disposition black South Africans are in and the black twitter fire storm lead to Standard Bank suspending him, which was followed by his resignation.