Social Network Blackout To Raise Money For Autism
Facebook and Twitter will be awfully quiet come Nov. 1 if a slew of autism advocacy groups have their way.
Advocates around the globe are pushing for a one day “communication shutdown” in an effort to create awareness and raise funds for autism organizations in more than 40 countries.
Since socialization is often one of the most difficult aspects of life for individuals with autism, organizers are asking participants to stop using social networks in an effort to understand what having autism is like.
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“I can remember the frustration of not being able to talk. I knew what I wanted to say, but I could not get the words out, so I would just scream,” said Temple Grandin, a prominent self-advocate. “People will have some idea of what this feels like when they take part in Communication Shutdown.”
Participants in the social networking blackout will download an application, which will post a message to their Facebook and Twitter pages indicating that they are not using the websites on Nov. 1 in solidarity with those who have autism. Proceeds from the $5 app will benefit autism awareness groups worldwide, organizers say.
In the United States, the HollyRod Foundation, the Autism Society of Colorado and Giant Steps Illinois will be the main recipients of funding. Additional money will be placed in a trust so that grants can be issued to other community-based organizations.