By: Anna Pham
One may view social media as shutting out our young generation in modern society. However, this mindset is a troubling way of thinking about the role of social media by seemingly focusing on what might be the harmful elements. Social media plays a crucial role in preserving cultural property more than one can realize. Cultural properties in all respective forms represent the people's collective memory, passing it down from generation to generation, combining it with the nationalistic and distinctive properties of the modern-day. It's essential to protect the cultural properties of this world, as it is a part of all of us. With its new respective technological developments in promoting further information sufficiently and efficiently, social media can educate and spread awareness to people on protecting cultural property and its significance. Using social media to acknowledge the facts of preserving cultural property is a critical step forward in changing the world today.
An example is the destruction of cultural properties in Arab countries during armed conflict. Observation of the behavior and actions in Iraq discovered the many violations of many provisions of the international humanitarian law, according to Mahmoud Ahmed Darwish of Minia University. The looting of Iraq in a U.S-led attack has destroyed unique collections of Mesopotamian civilizations and museums. The looting of the Mosul Museum had ten thousand lost artifacts with around 4,800 recovered pieces. Resolutions upon UNESCO, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, and other international organizations promptly failed in protecting and taking back stolen properties, even in cooperation with UNESCO. An urgent legislative framework is required to recover stolen cultural properties as swiftly as possible. Therefore, a request for assistance from UNESCO to the international community to stop the illegal pogrom, looting, and transfer of Iraqi cultural treasures. The ICC has also launched over a year-long public awareness campaign to educate the world community about its obligations and consequences for the illicit transfer of cultural property. Scholars, independent scientists, and Western media have exerted significant pressure on their governments to aid Iraq in its ongoing efforts to reclaim stolen cultural property in several countries. The steps to increase public knowledge of the illegal trade in Iraqi cultural properties have drawn attention to the specific cultural organizations' conduct in dealing with looted Iraqi cultural properties.
Our diverse world's connection and interdependence are promoted through social media. The increasing use of political activism and knowledge on social media platforms brings the audience together to acknowledge heavy topics, further educating the audience on issues that would seem "less significant" than the more general matters of celebrity news and mainstream media. It allows the people to engage in topics and information, enabling in-depth publicity. With its element of viral transmission, protecting cultural property is spread to people with or without prior knowledge—the use of social media communicates mass pieces of information to everyone, even lasting for days. The media transforms into a highly influential force. With one person spreading the awareness of protecting cultural property, social media promotes and shares it globally with people, gaining thousands and even more. It can even reach prominent media outlets and law, furthering the understanding of protection for cultural property. Thus, the role of social media is evident in protecting cultural property.
United Nations. (n.d.). United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization -
United Nations and the rule of law. United Nations. Retrieved May 31, 2022, from