University Of Tasmania
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'22 push-ups for a cause’: depicting the moral self via social media campaign #Mission22

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journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-19, 09:57 authored by Nicholas HookwayNicholas Hookway, Graham, T
In 2016, the online cause #Mission22 went viral on social media. Established to raise awareness about high suicide rates among US military veterans, the campaign involves users posting a video of themselves doing 22 push-ups for 22 days, and on some platforms, to donate and recruit others to do the same. Based on a ‘big data’ analysis of Twitter data (over 225,883 unique tweets) during the height of the campaign, this article uses #Mission22 as a site in which to analyse how people depict, self-represent and self-tell as moral subjects using social media campaigns. In addition to spotlighting how such movements are mobilised to portray moral selves in particular ways, the analysis focuses on how a specific online cause like #Mission22 becomes popularly supported from a plethora of possible causes and how this selection and support is shaped by online networks. We speculate that part of the reason why Mission22 went ‘viral’ in the highly competitive attention economies of social media environments was related to visual depictions of affective bodily, fitness and moral practices.


Publication title

MC Journal: A Journal of Media and Culture








School of Social Sciences


Queensland University of Technology * Creative Industries Faculty

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Rights statement

Copyright 2017 The Author Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0)

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  • Open

Socio-economic Objectives

Expanding knowledge in human society

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