Whether it’s a girl posting a half-naked selfie of herself on Instagram or a guy gloating about his new found CrossFit addiction, people will do anything for a “Like,” or “Favorite” on social media. The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge is just another example of a ploy for attention.
With the help of narcissistic social media users all over the globe, the ALS Association has achieved over $100 million in revenue (as of September 2014). The idea that people can all come together to fight a neurological disorder, such as Lou Gehrig’s Disease, and raise the ALS Association’s annual revenue by 3,500 percent, is amazing and it shows the true power of a social media campaign.
The problem is that the majority of people participating in the Ice Bucket Challenge do not care about the research that goes into ALS. They’re treating the challenge like the “Harlem Shake” video fad (purely to have their own version of it). The problem I have is not with the raising awareness aspect of the Ice Bucket Challenge, but with the reasons that people are doing it.
Cabrini sports teams, CAP board andmembers of administration have even taken part in this social media fad that’s been polluting news feeds for the last four weeks.
What’s next? Are we going to rub mayonnaise on our arms for domestic violence? Or maybe throw carrots in a river for depression? Don’t speak about a cause because of a nifty fad, speak about it because you care.
I’m a firm believer that if you put yourself in front of a cause purely for the reason of your own personal gain, you deserve to suffer the same ailment the cause is fighting for. Does that mean that I believe the people who did the Ice Bucket Challenge for the wrong reasons should contract ALS? I’m not sure (that’s harsh) but it’s incredibly inappropriate to make a mockery of a serious issue purely for a “Like” on Facebook.