What does change the algorithm mean?
The "algorithm" is the framework that adapts and formulates the content that you see on social media. It is inherently biased and often excludes marginalized populations. We change the algorithm by;
1. Bringing awareness on how the algorithm functions.
2. Intentionally diversifying our feeds.
Why does the algorithm matter?
When people do not see accurate representation in an area they are particularly interested in (say climbing), whether they realize it consciously or not, they are immediately entered in a process that declares "this is not for you." The message is reinforced when people look for help such as coaching or community and do not see accurate representation. It is further engraved when people look for equipment, and don't see accurate representation.
What We Are Doing
We started by trying to celebrate the diversity in the climbing community. What we quickly learned is that this sport is a predominately white and privileged sport which made it very difficult to highlight POC. With the current protesting happening in the Black Lives Matter movement, we knew this was important to launch a campaign to ensure climbing can become accessible and sustainable for Black people and other people of color.
We are reaching out to and working with gyms around the world to donate gym memberships. We are also working with equipment companies to donate equipment to the youth so they do not have to pay any money to climb at the gyms and crags. In some cases however, we may get requests from areas where gyms have not been able to donate memberships or we may get many requests in specific areas with not enough gym donations. We want to raise money for those instances as our goal is to break barriers for Black youth to get into climbing as possible.
This Go Fund Me is specifically raising money for Black Youth to cover the cost for the following:
-Gas to get youth to the gym
Thank you for your consideration of this campaign, and for your donation. #changethealgorithm #climbingisforeveryone
Melaney Russell is a co-founder of Thicc Climbing from Austin, Texas.
- Luke Gladis
Fundraising team: THICC Climbing (5)
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