6.9 Sikkim Rising: Social Awareness Using Social Media

6.9 Sikkim Rising a documentary awareness mini series highlighting the plight of Sikkim people after the earthquake using Social Media.

I happened to stumble upon a Facebook ad called ‘6.9 Sikkim Rising’ and was fascinated by the video trailer and its Facebook presence. Although, many of us might have heard in the news about the 6.9 magnitude earthquake that hit Sikkim on the evening of September 18, 2011, how many of us know that it lasted for a good 40 seconds to  devastate Sikkim enough? Thanks to Mediakraft Pvt. Ltd. who has undertaken a noble venture to make a travelogue documentary mini-series on the effects of this earthquake, we can now see for ourselves what have been the repercussions of the earthquake on the people of Sikkim.

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The documentary titled ‘6.9 Sikkim Rising’ will be launched live over the Internet in a worldwide press conference, also marking the first time a documentary series in India is launched live over the internet. Talking about the objective of this documentary, director Aditya Basu said, “We intend to create international awareness about what has happened in Sikkim and will highlight how Sikkim needs additional funding and an increase in tourism related revenues.

The series has been well promoted on social media with the Facebook page being in the limelight. Also the series has well implemented the support of other popular social networks like Twitter and YouTube.

Facebook is alive with a decent usage of Fanzila, an application to create your own customized fan pages. There is a home page that displays everything neatly from videos, galleries, forums and blogs. Although, the forum has a topic started by Aditya, we cannot find any discussion happening on it. The blog has informative posts where Aditya describes the problems of transportation, tourism, etc. that exist in Sikkim. Under videos, one can find the video trailers of the documentary 6.9 Sikkim Rising. Twitter displays the tweets which are somewhat similar to the updates on the Facebook wall.

6.9_Sikkim_Rising Facebook Home Page
Facebook Home Page

There are nearly 1522 fans talking in a 3,716 strong community. The wall is regularly updated with the latest about the documentary series. Aditya talks about his experiences of making the documentary and also shares interesting snaps that have been taken along the way. However being active on social media is the key and Aditya can share more of his Sikkim snaps to highlight problems of the common man. Along with this Aditya needs to decide who should be communicating with the fans on the page. Many a times I have noted that the content is being posted by page admin but then the replies come from Aditya and not the page admin.

The awareness campaign of 6.9 Sikkim Rising seems to be well received by fans and the best part of the Facebook campaign is that it creates an excellent avenue for awareness on Facebook itself and does not require a fan to navigate elsewhere. Creating awareness for social causes via social media is not a new thing but Aditya is highlighting the cause in an effective way.