Activism is a difficult sort of outreach; there are multiple types of target audiences that are drastically different, and all need to be touched by the same story or idea. Often times, it is even more difficult because the people to be reached comprise of those with authority, who are on the opposing end of those with the desire for change. This creates a very dynamic kind of activist - someone who is capable of navigating those different group by crafting special approaches for each group while engaging with them all physically.
But does the digital activist have the same skill?
Activism through social media and other web-based tools are the product of a necessity to reach and mobilize a large amount of persons quickly and easily, which is something we see now that the internet does best. However, those messages don't change from computer to computer. The student and single mother, politician and preacher all see the same thing.
While face-to-face activism allows for the activist or the group that's doing the work to be the bridge between the citizens and policymakers. But digital activism seems placed in a position to display their message and hope for the very best. While the primary purpose of mobilizing people for the cause it met online very well, converting any sort of digital mobilization to change is near impossible when the message to grab the common man is the same one that tries to usher change in those who have the authority to create solutions (or may even be stakeholders in the problem). Multiple approaches for each group under the same cause may be the fix to this now, but is there a way for digital activism to appeal to all those affected simultaneously?
While there is still a secure place for digital activism in mobilization and awareness-raising, it is quite possible that the communication line between the community and the authority may lie within physical activism, and that digital technology is just a very helpful compliment.