Sarah J. Jackson Wins McGannon Award for #HashtagActivism

The book considers the ways in which networks of historically subordinated groups mobilize progressive change on social media.

By Ashton Yount

The McGannon Center announced this week that Professor Sarah J. Jackson has won the Donald McGannon Award for Social and Ethical Relevance in Communications Technology Research for her book #HashtagActivism: Networks of Race & Gender Justice. She shares the award with her co-authors Moya Bailey and Brooke Foucault Welles, both faculty of Northeastern University.

Based at Fordham University, the McGannon Center is dedicated to furthering understanding of the ethical and social justice dimensions of media and communication technologies, particularly how such technologies affect the distribution of wealth, opportunities, and privileges within society. Its annual book award aims to promote research that uncovers the lived social impacts of communications technologies.

“We are thrilled to receive the McGannon Award for #HashtagActivism, and we extend our deepest appreciation to the award committee,” says Jackson, Presidential Associate Professor and Co-Director of the Media, Inequality & Change Center. “The honor is quite special to us as so many books and scholars we admire have previously won the award. We will donate half of the award prize to The Free Black Woman’s Library.”

The award committee emphasized that #HashtagActivism stood out from all other books considered for the award and highlighted the book’s rigorous and interdisciplinary account of concerted and spontaneous online viral phenomena, and its explanation of the ways in which networks of Black and brown people, women, and other historically subordinated groups have "birthed and nourished" counterpublics on social media and helped to mobilize progressive social change.

As part of celebrating #HashtagActivism, the McGannon Center will host a virtual event in March to recognize the authors and discuss their work.