Happy Independence Day! While most Americans are unplugged today tending to barbecues, baseball games or frolicking down at the beach we thought that we'd offer everyone our view of how social media played a pivotal role in the events that lead up to the historic signing of the Declaration of Independence. Here's an entertaining - and short - photoessay in tribute to those pioneers of publishing. Transcript follows the clip.
It’s Independence Day in the Unites States of America, a time when people of all walks of life get together to celebrate our nation. In most ways we celebrate America as it is today, a unified nation more than two hundred years old.
But it’s also a day when we remember how America used to be on the day of its birth. Who was America on that day? We were people of Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Georgia – people who lived along a thousand miles of coast , plains and mountains, each with their own idea of what America was and what it should become.
Where was that common idea that we call America formed?
Was it in the bitter snows of Valley Forge?
Was it on the battlefields of Guilford Courthouse, Cowpens or Bennington?
The War of Independence was necessary to create an independent nation, but there was one real factor above all that created a unified vision of what America would become:
Out of the printing presses of colonial America poured pamphlets expressing a new vision of politics and democracy that spread throughout the land. The pamphlets were read aloud and discussed in taverns across the colonies, creating a new common consciousness about this new nation in the making. The discussions lead to convictions, convictions lead to action – and action lead us to new discussions, new content – and a new nation.
In our great new era in which so many people are blessed with the freedom to express themselves through publishing, please take a moment today to remember the social media pioneers who dared to express bold thoughts to people – people who would join to become a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the freedom of expression that has ignited a global revolution in content.
Have a great Independence Day, wherever you are.