I remember my friends and I all hovered around the computer to watch the much anticipated “Same Love” video, after being so impacted by the lyrics of the hit song by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis. The song, the music video, and the conversation inspired by the nature of both, are all different elements of digital rhetoric.
The video was posted on Youtube, by Ryan Lewis, with the caption “We support civil rights, and hope WA State voters will APPROVE REF 74 and legalize marriage equality.” The video received over 350,000 views within the first 24 hours of its posting. Youtube is a wonderful example of a platform for digital rhetoric in that it presents a video, which is a piece of digital rhetoric itself, and then allows for commentary allowing others to play with, assess, and contemplate the ideas presented in the video thus including another element of digital rhetoric. The controversial nature of this video led many who felt passionately about the subject to contribute to the conversation that took place in the comment section. The deep and complex ideas regarding religion, homosexuality, feminism, and racism, are all discussed in multiple comments, sometimes in the form of ignorant racial, and homophobic slurs, sometimes in the form of profound and eloquent arguments on either side.
Whether or not you agree or disagree with the legalization of same sex marriage, or any other topics that the song and music video “Same Love” addressed, its viral media presence shed light on very important, and prevelent issues that are difficult to talk about. Thus, the digital rhetoric inspired conversation outside of the digital realm, extending it to the classroom, the dinner table, the church/temple pews.