Identity and Online Advocacy

Asian Lives Matters Activisms online: a rally between hatred and awareness on social media platforms.


This paper will fleetingly study about the hatred Asian people are facing online and the method of sensitization to reduce the rate of racism towards Asian people in western countries. This paper would detail the various stages involved in the development of hate speech. This rhetoric paper argues about the racism that Asian people are facing especially during these past few years and raising awareness for this cause through social media platforms. This paper will give a further insight about online advocacy and identities as there is an issue revolving around a certain community online with #ASIANLIVESMATTER.

People’s interactions have changed dramatically because of the proliferation of social media networks. Individuals will create as well as share views, information, questions, and diverse viewpoints thanks to the decentralization nature of these networks. However, in violation of their political credentials, their role in reinforcing a new breed of online hate, which has resulting in too much liberty of expression online has led to  cyberbullying of  other communities that does not feels like fitting their norms online.

Since cyberbullying or posting videos of people being bullied, sensitization against racism has also been started though social media platforms to raise awareness of this issue that are greatly affecting the Asian community negatively.

Online interaction through social media platforms has become so popular nowadays, users have developed a visual identity that they want to be reflected though different social medias that are being used; this is considered advantageous since it allows them to communicate with their friends, relatives, and obtain knowledge (Li, 2007).

However, the misuse of social media platforms can be nefarious for people who are being bullied, many users are being harassed with hate speech online, which is affecting their sense of self and leading to people refusing to reveal their true identities (Li, 2007).. Consequently, this has a huge effect online advocacy, which is complicated by the fact that they are being faced by hate speech, which they are likely incapable of addressing (Li, 2007). Nonetheless, sharpening of the racism issue are also considered, people are bringing up a revolution to stop racial inequalities by creating accounts for this special use as well as the creation of hashtags for this purpose.

This paper scrutiny will be about hatred and awareness of the racial movement ‘Asian Lives Matters’ on social media platforms and about the means these  issues are being raised though identities and online advocacy.

What is causing hatred?

Emerging ethnic patterns are becoming more popular as social and economic conditions on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and other networking platforms continue to mimic social and economic environments in various parts of the world. To incite hatred and bigotry, these racist propaganda uses manipulative tactics such as memes and mocking accounts. The proliferation of these networks has resulted in the emergence of new structures , organized racial organizations are created, and these networks are used to promote hate (Alkiviadou, 2018). Racial blogs are developed, and since these pages draw a growing number of visitors, more people visit them, thus expanding and reinforcing a racial community identity (Robnett & Feliciano, 2011). This multimedia platforms are suitable for customizing texts for a specific audience. They allow these racial groups to be adequately characterized in the virtual world by providing effective methods for connecting a greater number of participants and propagating vitriolic dialect, thus fostering a sense of belonging among themselves. Individuals are also interested in spreading consciously ethnic, homophobic, and bigotry aggressive speech on blogs and platforms devoted to spreading incendiary rhetoric in order to incite violence within themselves, in addition to racial communities on these pages .

Researchers are investing a lot of work into detecting and decoding virtual racist speech, but little is understood about its spread on mainstream or extremist platforms, and the frequency of hostility varies depending on the field’s problems.  Creators of sexist and offensive speech tend to approach in a softer, more subtle way before advancing to a pernicious manner, according to the findings. Any of this, according to the writers, is due to a decrease in interpersonal exclusion when these individuals transition into a more extreme virtual environment (Bliuc et al., 2018). When comparing participants who use inflammatory language to those who don’t, Abuse participants were found to be highly linked to one another. As a result, when compared to participants who are not sharing hate, the abusive content provided by these individuals is shared faster, farther, and to a larger audience (Bliuc et al., 2018). As a result of these campaigns, hate speech is being more apparent on social media platforms.

Hate rhetoric on social media can be triggered by several factors.

When the Democratic Party becomes more divided, people are turning to justifying media sources. As a result, there is an increasing sense of ethical detachment, which contributes to denigration, even though this trend does not represent enough for substantive dialogue due to the diversity of viewpoints and verbal expressions required for a functioning democratic society (Cammaerts, 2009). Participants on new media platforms often feel offended as they come across different views. This inevitably leads to arrogance, which may take the shape of denial, as well as noncognitive dissipation, which is linked to a sense of identity’s presence in an unmanageable dispute. As a result, this idea fuels concerns that social media practices will contribute to the validation of hateful propaganda, jeopardizing contemplative democracy whilst also contributing to increased perceptual fragmentation with potentially dangerous implications (Chetty & Alathur, 2018). Individuals’ responses to their identity hazard are based on the severity of the situation.

A difficulty is created, for example, when a core sense of self is tested by another individual. One should either oppose or reject the opposing beliefs, behaviors, and values, or both participants have a propensity to behave in a way that contradicts the legitimacy of the other (Back et al., 1999). As confirmation, a confrontational posture attacks their self-esteem and identity, resulting in an advanced stage of degradation. When people encounter those whose viewpoints contradict their own, they prefer to form communities of similar beliefs, which sets in motion a prejudice structure. where classes that were formerly considered to be indistinguishable are now labeled as “other.” When more others are identified, the task of identifying them becomes more difficult, necessitating caution against them.

For instance, the Asian community faces many difficulties especially in America, racism is not foreign for those people. In 2020 and during the first months of 2021, many racists has started to attack the elderly Asians, which has led to many deaths (“Covid ‘hate crimes’ against Asian Americans on rise”, 2021). Asians people faces many difficulties, as people threatened them very often with “go back to your country” or “you are taking all the jobs”. Asians find it very difficult to practice their tradition and culture, females can’t wear the ‘bindi’ in fear of being attacked. Unfortunately, the law has not taken charges on people who are doing these hatred crimes towards the Asian community and racism is still going strong.

This results in a rigidification mechanism, in which assumptions become stagnant and augmented conclusions emerge, causing subjects that were not initially included in the conflict to be viewed as troublesome and central to the dispute. When a group reaches this stage, the conflict shapes its consciousness and identity, forcing individuals in a group to cooperate. When a group reaches this stage, the conflict shapes its consciousness and identity, forcing members of one group to hate members of another.

Does awareness really works?

Sensitization is very important to reduce harmfulness that is affecting the society, anti-Asian sentiments has risen even more during the outbreak of coronavirus as China was the first to have contracted this deadly virus and that many people believes that this disease were made by the Chinese to destroy America, however this statement was never confirmed. Since then, there was many conflicts between the American and Chinese government especially during Trump’s mandate.

Many pacific march has been organized to raise awareness about this issue and which has led to the slogan ‘ Asians Lives Matters’, fortunately this has touched many people mostly the new elected president of American, Joe Biden who has recently signed an executive order condemning ‘ racism, xenophobia and intolerance against the Asian American community’ (“How To Combat Anti-Asian Racism Today | The 360 Blog – Salesforce”, 2021); and also which has also positively impacted this issue is that the vice president of the United States is the a first generation Asian American, Kamala Harris which of mix ethnicities, south Indian and Afro American.

Campaigns has been made to denounce hatred and bullying on social media platforms such as the creation of hashtags #AsianLivesMatters or #HateIsAVirus to make this issue viral. Despite social media is a great tool for bullying it can also be used against it, for example people are sharing quotes of Martin Luther King to make people aware that this issue is not fair towards certain community.  Being used as an anti racism tool, different organization has brought up many ways to become a good digital citizen to avoid any misuse (Keum & Miller, 2018).

Impacts of online advocacy and identities.

Despite the fact that verbal harassment is one of the factors that contributes to communal conflict, it has a profound effect on the intensification of mutual hate emotions. This is particularly true in the virtual world, where the anonymity of online contact leads to users sharing more negative opinions than they would otherwise (Bullingham & Vasconcelos, 2013). Participants tend to believe that traditional social standards do not apply to them, which exacerbates group conflicts. Similarly, hate speech on these social media platforms provides a significant barrier between members and politicians, allowing respondents to self-interpret without fear of backlash. Social networking websites, in particular, enable compatible individuals to communicate with one another who may otherwise be unaware of one another’s existence.

Racist groups can use the Internet to share potentially disadvantaged or impolite viewpoints, allowing them to foster a sense of belonging when coping with feelings of isolation. social identity is described as an individual’s sense of self in relation to a society, as well as the sentimental meaning that comes with it (Kingston & Stam, 2013). Individuals have many intertwined identities associated with well defined and relevant social groups, as well as ambiguous meanings such as ethnic origin. Connections of historically formed identities are a central component of social identity theory. By violating the effective attributes of belonging to a social circle, hatred can undermine the meaningful aspects of the self that are derived from collective membership, stripping members of their dignity. According to research, being the object of hate speech on the internet causes the target to identify with insecurities; rather than associating themselves with admirable characteristics, the victimized person with animosity may align with their community with threatened feelings (Pantti et al., 2019).

Nonetheless, some research shows that members of groups whose cultural integrity is often undermined by hostility and guilt are less likely to develop sympathy for the haters, whereas others reject it outright. Online advocacy is influencing direct communication on the risen issue on social media platforms or even blogs.

Link between web media and the conference paper issue

Web media is any forms of communication represented on the web, during the last few years there is an increase of interactivity on social media networks. The approach of this conference is to raise the problem of racism and hatred on networks to make the maximum of people aware of the unfortunate events which is happening towards the Asian community. However, the misuse of web 2.0 for bullying has risen and it is quite difficult to know exactly who these people or organization are who are sharing hatred. Fortunately, the use of web media is helping to make this issue visible only online to be responsible digital citizens.


To sum up, this paper has noted how the rise of social media sites has made conversation simpler than ever before, while also examining one of the most pressing topics of our day, hatred, racism and awareness, on these platforms. This paper also briefly explored the origins of the hate that is being spread online, as well as who is spreading it and why. Furthermore, this paper has summarized the various stages that contribute to the construction of racism on social media sites. This paper went on to address the many forms of hate speech and the damaging impact as well as its awareness to reduce the harms through online advocacy they have on users’ online identities , as well as how this causes them to reconsider their social and self-identities.


Alkiviadou, N. (2018). Hate speech on social media networks: towards a regulatory framework?. Information & Communications Technology Law, 28(1), 19-35.

Back, L., Crabbe, T., & Solomos, J. (1999). Beyond the racist/hooligan couplet: race, social theory and football culture. The British Journal Of Sociology, 50(3), 419-442.

Bliuc, A., Faulkner, N., Jakubowicz, A., & McGarty, C. (2018). Online networks of racial hate: A systematic review of 10 years of research on cyber-racism. Computers In Human Behavior, 87, 75-86.

Bullingham, L., & Vasconcelos, A. (2013). ‘The presentation of self in the online world’: Goffman and the study of online identities. Journal Of Information Science, 39(1), 101-112.

Cammaerts, B. (2009). Radical pluralism and free speech in online public spaces. International Journal Of Cultural Studies, 12(6), 555-575.

Chetty, N., & Alathur, S. (2018). Hate speech review in the context of online social networks. Aggression And Violent Behavior, 40, 108-118.

Covid ‘hate crimes’ against Asian Americans on rise. BBC News. (2021). Retrieved 17 April 2021, from

How To Combat Anti-Asian Racism Today | The 360 Blog – Salesforce. The 360 Blog from Salesforce. (2021). Retrieved 17 April 2021, from

Keum, B., & Miller, M. (2018). Racism on the Internet: Conceptualization and recommendations for research. Psychology Of Violence, 8(6), 782-791.

Kingston, L., & Stam, K. (2013). Online Advocacy: Analysis of Human Rights NGO Websites. Journal Of Human Rights Practice, 5(1), 75-95.

Li, Q. (2007). Bullying in the new playground: Research into cyberbullying and cyber victimisation. Australasian Journal Of Educational Technology, 23(4).

Pantti, M., Nelimarkka, M., Nikunen, K., & Titley, G. (2019). The meanings of racism: Public discourses about racism in Finnish news media and online discussion forums. European Journal Of Communication, 34(5), 503-519.

Robnett, B., & Feliciano, C. (2011). Patterns of Racial-Ethnic Exclusion by Internet Daters. Social Forces, 89(3), 807-828.

19 thoughts on “Asian Lives Matters Activisms online: a rally between hatred and awareness on social media platforms.

  1. Hi Jensee,

    I’m glad you decided to write a paper on this issue as I had heard about it briefly, but did not know what it was about and where the tag had stemmed from. It’s interesting how the caronavirus initially brought out the worst in humans: fighting over toilet paper, blaming Asians, turning against each other. But it also gave rise to many beautiful acts of kindness such as the Asian Lives Matter movement or communities collecting food for the elderly when they couldn’t leave their homes. I wonder if other prejudices will be challenged throughout this pandemic.

    Thank you for a perceptive read. I really enjoyed it.

  2. Hi Jensee!

    Your paper was really insightful and interesting, especially the way that you explored the link between online advocacy and identities with regards to the Asian Lives Matter movement. The current environment that we live in has marked an increase in Anti-Asian attacks and hate crimes across the U.S and globally. Over the past year, attacks on Asian Americans have increased more than 150% as compared to the previous year especially due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Racist attacks and discrimination have long been underreported, however social media platforms have helped to change the way people see challenges for Asians. Furthermore, I do think that social media has also acted as an equalizing force not previously available to marginalized communities, encouraging more Asians to voice out about the injustices that they are facing and to fight back. Do you think that implementing more policies is the most effective way to fight against this massive issue of racism and hatred against Asians?

    Looking forward to hearing from you soon! Really great paper!

  3. Hey Jensee,
    I really enjoyed your paper. To be honest, with the things happening recently, this topic really needs to be in the limelight more. And compared to the physical community, social media is the platform on which it is more appropriately done. The stereotypes and hatred towards any community in general or identity should be stopped and social media campaigns are the ways to adopt nowadays.

    1. Hi Vejetaa,
      thank you for this constructive comment. I completely agree with you.

  4. Hi Jensee,

    I share with your view that while social media are widely used by people to communicate with their friends and relatives, some irresponsible people are also using it for negative purposes such as cyberbullying, hate speech and racism against the Asian people. I personally condemn this kind of abuse in social media. Fortunately, the newly elected US President, Joe Bidin has set a good example by signing an executive order condemning racism, xenophobia and intolerance against the Asian American community. I hope more world leaders will emulate Joe Bidin.

    Best regards,

    1. Hi Elaine,
      Definitely, joe biden has been able to raise this issue in America however racism towards the Asian community is way more as it touches every part of the world. Asians have been the victims of racism for centuries now. I hope this gets better with time.

      Thank you for your comment

  5. Hi Jensee!
    This is a very factual and insightful read and I definitely learnt more about the Asian lives matter activism and this is something I wasn’t fully aware of. Social media brings about a lot of benefits to its users, however, it also has its negative impacts on users ranging from hate speeches, hatred, racism etc. Social media allows liberty of expression as well as freedom of speech and although this is considered to be beneficial, it also comes with a lot of baggage as people tend to use online platforms to express hatred, racism and hate speeches due to the fact that these comments can be made anonymous. The examples you’ve used were very interesting as this is a community that does not gain enough recognition in my opinion.

    1. Hi Saranya,
      i completely agree with you, Asians are such a minority that the media does not cover any agressions. fortunately, the asians are fighting for their lives.

      Thank you very much for your comment.

  6. Hey Jensee,
    I’m curious about what it is in social media that causes these kinds of racial/political/ideological divides. Thinking on it, I have formed a theory that one of the most important parts of Web 2.0 social media is the formation of identity. You outline what you look like and you promote what you like and dislike openly. In the real world, what person’s beliefs are are not apparent at first sight, yet it’s what defines us online.

    So instead of us getting to know strangers first for their values, we are instantly polarised by our beliefs (or what we say our beliefs are). Sorry about my rambling I was just considering the implications.

    1. Hi Jorell,
      Indeed nice reflection from you, well, the web 2.0 is very prominent in our daily lives. People tend to sets their beliefs on social media and being openly racist on it because of their way of thinking or maybe behaviour, Some people has no limits whether it is online or offline.

      Thank you for your comment.

  7. Hi Jensee,
    I really enjoyed reading your paper. I like the way you deconstructed and explained your topic in different sections, Your analysis made this topic clear and understandable.
    However, I have a thoughtful question. Are Asians really being attacked more than before recently, or is it that we are just seeing more reports of it? I would love to hear your thoughts on this! Great work!

    1. Hi Noodhish,
      asians ere attacked a long way before, but with the upcoming of social media the racism has increased and has became more visible.

      Thank you

  8. Hello Jensee, hope you doing well. Your paper is very enriching and informative. You have actually digged down the holes of #AsianLivesMatter, which I had no clue about, thank you for this article Jensee.
    Asian-american struggled hard in proving racism because people are not aware about the root cause and history of asians. And i personally think that social media is becoming a platform that is questioning answers, it has become a place where conflicting heats keep creating. And i truly think that people need to learn about asian-history.
    The recent #StopAsianHate have bring back ‘memories’ of the BLM movement for the US residents. We can still sense the white supremacy in the US, ruling. My question is do asian american lives matter for the US? and also does this matter to the members of BLM? If the white supremacy is dominant in the US, do the members of the Black lives matter, would implicate or help the current issue, because of their white-adjacent ?

    1. Hi Mageswari,
      Asians are a minority community in the US, unfortunately no one from the BLM movement took the matter seriously and supported the asians. In America, everyone are egoistic and are only about themselves. Fortunately, the asians has started to raise their voices against the racism they are facing.

      Thank you for your comment.

  9. Hi Jensee,

    I thoroughly enjoyed your paper and wholeheartedly agree with your hard-hitting points especially in regards to the development of hate speech and the effect it has on online advocacy due to the “contribution of validation of hateful propaganda”.

    Reading your paper about the hateful rhetoric that has spread online against Asians because of the COVID-19 pandemic, I found that it relates to my paper where I speak about the toxicity of cancel culture. where I state that social media has allowed marginalized silenced users a voice to speak against social justice. This ties with your statement that “when people encounter those whose viewpoints contradict their own, they prefer to form communities of similar beliefs, which sets in motion a prejudice structure”, where I believe it causes conflict in itself as individuals or racist groups form. One group that was highlighted in the past year is the Proud Boys, formed majoritively online by a group of people sharing similar and hateful beliefs against individuals labelled as ‘other’.

    In light of recent attacks against Asian communities, especially in the USA, do you find that advocacy against Asian attacks is gaining as much momentum as the Black Lives Matter movement that became a monumental feat across the world?
    I found that the hateful rhetoric that emerged against Asians from the beginning of the pandemic was overshadowed by the Black Lives Matter protests and it has only recently globally aware, particularly in Western society, at the beginning of this year.

    Your paper states that if “one should either oppose or reject the opposing beliefs, behaviours, and values, or both participants have a propensity to behave in a way that contradicts the legitimacy of the other”, it rings true when Asian Lives Matter and Black Lives Matter come against each other.
    Did you find that there were members of each movement speak against the other forgetting that there are allies for both sides?
    For example, those who post the hashtag, #BLM under a black square on Instagram were silent when Asian Lives Matter gained steam.
    Does online advocacy become redundant when one member of the movement contradicts their beliefs by speaking against or even saying nothing about the other when they are all speaking against racial injustice at the end of the day?

    Sorry for the long post, but your paper really made me rethink online activism! Great work 😊

    1. Hi Everlasting,
      in this race everyone is egoistic however the asians supported the BLM movement and unfortunately it is not the same for the others.

      Thank you for your comment

  10. Awesome! It is very enriching as I have learnt more about Asian lives matter activism. 👍

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *