#wakeupcall – the selfie social media fundraising campaign

By now you’ll have seen the selfie craze of taking a picture of yourself as soon as you wake up, sharing it on social media and nominating others to do the same – #wakeupcall.

Heston Blumenthal and Jeremy Clarkson

Heston Blumenthal and Jeremy Clarkson first thing in the morning…

The latest social media campaign, launched by Jemima Khan, is estimated to have reached 300 million people. More importantly, it has a clear fundraising ask, urging those who post and are nominated to support Unicef’s work in Syria.

Here’s what I think of this campaign, words that first appeared on the Guardian Voluntary Sector Network.

I like #wakeupcall – it’s silly, social, genuine and raises money for Unicef and Syria, so has a real impact on people’s lives.

Every time we think campaigns like these have had their day, another one springs up in its place. I was talking to a colleague recently about how much longer we give #icebucketchallenge (seven-10 days we thought) – wake up selfies sprung up in that time.

Social media has been encouraging people to share the irreverent and funny details of their lives for years. The best campaigns capitalise on this.

I don’t buy the idea that they appeal to people’s vanity – personally, knowing what friends look like first thing in the morning is fun, and I don’t think any of them are vain.

I think the idea that it’s vain or self-centred to publicly share anything involving ourselves that raises money for charity is dangerous. It forces people back to some sort of 1950’s belief that good deeds must go unnoticed. That’s wrong – we should be sharing them and inspiring our ever closer networks to do the same.

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