V3con is organised by the Los Angeles Chapter of the Asian American Journalist Association (AAJA) inviting speakers to share knowledge and values of the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community. Topics discussed in the conference are regarding the vision, visibility and voice (V3) of the community’s media coverage.
Amongst the panelists of this year’s V3con, Jason Fong caught my interest with his founding of the “MyAsianAmericanStory” hashtag. #MyAsianAmericanStory was created last year in August after an American politician, Jeb Bush, name-called the US born immigrants as “Anchor-babies.” Bush further added that his statement was “frankly more related to Asian people.” Amongst criticism against Bush, Jason Fong, who is still in high school, stepped up to create the hashtag, encouraging Asian Americans to voice their opinions on justice and fairness regarding their community in the United States.
As a high school student who had not yet reached the age required for voting, Jason Fong found media a useful tool to spread awareness of the Asian American community, which was indeed successful. Within 2 weeks, the hashtag was used 11,000 times, allowing news such as CNN and Los Angeles Times to cover examples of racial discrimination the community has faced.
Here are some of the insightful tweets:
It is hard to imagine myself as a high school student creating a platform on media where people could freely voice their opinions on a political matter. I would not have thought of voicing my opinions on media as an alternative to my voting rights, so I admire Jason Fong for his courage and will to defend his identity while empowering others to do so as well online. #MyAsianAmericanStory clearly shows that we are now living the age where voices on the media affect people’s decisions on whom they vote for; social media’s influence is substantial.