Posted by Reuben Turner
| 20-10-2010 10:26 | Category:
Here’s a lovely idea to raise money and awareness globally for autism. On Nov 1st thousands of people will be taking part in Communication Shutdown, allowing their social network profiles to be taken over for the day. A very simple and effective idea. As a fundraiser I particularly like the fact that you have to donate to take part – no #slacktivism here.
As a person on the autism spectrum, I think this campaign sends the wrong message. It spreads the myth we don’t communicate, when in fact we communicate in many different ways, including social media. Instead of silence on 11/1, how about Autistics Speaking Day?
Posted by Dude, I'm An Aspie. | 21-10-2010 16:12
Hi, and thanks for your comment.
It raises a complex issue (which we won’t resolve here) and I applaud your alternative ‘speak out’ day. The truth is that this is a marketing and awareness campaign, and as is the case with most of these, it has to simplify an issue in order to make a point. The same will be true of all the campaigns on this site, whether they’re about drink-driving, domestic violence or indeed other conditions and disabilities.
As the father of a nine-year old with autism and someone whose worked with a great many autism organisations over the years, I also know the difficulties of representing a condition that’s so broad – and including all kinds of people who have greater or lesser communication abilities and needs. It’s virtually impossible.
Put bluntly, as well as speaking up, you could also support those who choose to cease communication on Nov 1st on behalf of all those who are less able than you.
Posted by reuben | 25-10-2010 09:15
Reuben, you’re absolutely correct. We who take part in Autistics Speaking Day must also encourage donations to worthy organizations and support those who donate through the Shutdown. Whether we choose to speak up or shut down, we will all be raising awareness in our own way.
Posted by Dude, I'm An Aspie. | 26-10-2010 00:26