Photo courtesy of Humans of New York
Although the immensely popular Facebook photo series page Humans of New York may touch on a wide range of social, political and cultural issues, creator Brandon Stanton is careful not to directly politicise himself and his work.
“I want the site to be about story telling. I don’t want the audience to think that there’s any motivation behind telling these stories,” he told Collective Hub in Issue 27.
The street photographer rarely comments from his own perspective – he merely holds a camera to the everyday people he encounters, carefully and sensitively sharing their stories of success and struggle, of happiness and despair. The site is raw and real and that’s what makes it a powerful force of alternate media. It’s the continuing story of the everyday human, from both New York and beyond.
“I can’t really be sure what everybody takes out of it,” he told us. “I think a lot of it for people is very personal, they might identify with this story or that story because it parallels things that are going on in their own life.”
This was certainly the case following his unusually personal and very political statement about presidential candidate Donald Trump. The open letter to the Republican front runner was posted on March 15 and has since been shared well over a million times, as well as being ‘reacted’ to (with a strong variation of ‘like’ and ‘wow’ reactions) over 2.2 million times. It’s also being widely reported – from author Elizabeth Gilbert to the Huffington Post – as the most shared post in Facebook history and the reaction is growing still.
“I realise now that there is no correct time to oppose violence and prejudice,” he wrote in his open letter. “The time is always now. Because along with millions of Americans, I’ve come to realise that opposing you is no longer a political decision. It is a moral one.”
Read the full, powerful post below and read our original story in Issue 27.