While this list of women highlights some of the best people to follow on Twitter, it should be said that their presence in social media extends outside of the confines of 140 characters and a link. Whether they are making you laugh out loud over hilarious tweets about pop culture or hipping you to the newest new media available for the tech guru or novice alike, these women are using their influence to engage, connect and inspire. As you read more about each woman, keep in mind that it’s not about the number of followers they may have on Twitter or the “likes” they may have on their Facebook page. Their mention on this list has everything to do with how they have chosen to use their influence and recognizing the value they add to the cyber world. What makes this list particularly compelling is that all of these women, while vastly skilled in their use of social media, are artists as well, excelling in an artistic realm, from literary art to the visual. We here at Liberated Muse love that fact most of all!
So check out our list, add your feedback and be sure to check these women out as you get ready for 2012 to make its entrance.
Tinu Abayomi-Paul- @tinu
Whether you are trying to get new traffic to your site, or learn what new tech tools are available as you try to integrate your business into social media, Tinu Abayomi-Paul is the one to follow. Funny, approachable and encouraging, she is not at all what you would expect from someone who is at the top of the list when it comes to online tech gurus. This internet dyanamo has over 15 years of experience on the net and is one of the leading experts in SEO in the country. Editor at Women Grow Business and founder of Free Traffic Tips, Tinu is one of the innovators on the web who is a first-class example of longevity in the world of social media. While at the top of her game in social media, Tinu is also a renowned poet and creative writer, a contributor to the Def Poetry Jam book Bum Rush the Page.
Shireen Mitchell- @digitalsista
Shireen Mitchell is the maven of social media and tech, in the game since the game started. A web designer who has used her art to extend outside of the box, she knows what’s hot, what’s not and what is not even worth mentioning. Her tweets are ever-upbeat, informative and always connected to the tech and social world, sharing news beneficial to the least savvy onliner to the tech addict alike. The original creator of the term “web goddess”, Shireen is a dynamic speaker, winner of numerous awards that recognize her online awesomeness and a well-rounded organizer participating in the producing of various tech events including the Digital Community, Techno Rodeo, Feminism 2.0, Shes Geeky, TechAdventure DC, Nonprofit 2.0, Computers, Freedom and Privacy, Gov20 Expo, TEDx Potomac and more.
At the point where arts, culture and intellect meet, there is dream Hampton. If she’s not one of the most retweeted people on Twitter, she is probably pretty close. Her incredible insight, forthright statements and six degrees or less of separation from some of the most high-profile folks we know make Dream one of the most compelling follows on Twitter. A prolific writer and filmmaker, she co-authored the unreleased Black Book with Shawn Jay-Z Carter and collaborated with him on Decoded (November, 2010, Spigel and Grau.) She's co-authoring Kamal "Q Tip" Fareed's memoir, Industry Rules, to be published by Random House .
Vocalist, college professor and anthropologist Kyra Gaunt-Palmer pushes the thinking envelope, transforming your social media experience into an exploration of concepts, ideas and experiences. She is not hesitant to present content that pushes the boundary you may have constructed between the superficial and the authentic. Her tweets, blog posts and Facebook content all revolve around thought—encouraging you to use your brain, have an opinion and share. From religion and parenting to the arts and academia, Kyra is a rich resource of information and an approachable person to engage with online. She trains groups in the anthropology of listening and is a 2009 TED Fellow.
Phenomenal visual artist Regina Holliday has used the tragic death of her husband as a platform to advocate for the rights of citizens to have access to their medical records. Whether she is creating murals on the backs of jackets and creating a walking mural or tweeting the latest news on health advocacy issues, Regina is heavily involved in changing the world and using her art and her online presence as her springboard. A dynamic speaker as well, Regina is a shining example of the intersection of arts, social media and politics and how its effective application can truly transform minds and policy.
Tracy Chiles McGhee-@womanifesting
Emerging writer Tracy Chiles McGhee has used her own interest in bettering the world as an impetus to create her own nonprofit organization, Womanifesting, to encourage the philanthropy and dream imagining of other women around her. In its short existence, Womanifesting already boasts a strong online presence on Twitter and Facebook, encouraging women through thoughtful and inspiring messaging to dream big and recognize their divine power. In addition to Womanifesting, Tracy's blog "Passionate Self by Tracy" provides a place of respite and inspiration as she shares her path as a published writer, attorney, and mom.
A humorist with a twist of satire and savvy, Luvvie has virtually created her own brand of incredible that has snagged thousands of readers who tune-in everyday to read about what is in Luvvie’s head. A true artistic word-smith, Luvvie’s artistry also extends into the realm of fashion and web design as she helms brands in both areas in addition to her highly popular blog “Awesomely Luvvie”. On her blog, she speaks to everything under the sun—from the comical antics of reality stars to the horrendous outputs of some of our biggest celebrities. Recently selected as a blogger for the Academy Awards, Luvvie’s tweets are some of the funniest ones you’ll read in any given minute, so be sure to read with caution and hopefully with no food in your mouth, for you will surely be laughing out loud.
Formerly known as Sista Toldja, Jamilah Lenieux is a smart and sassy writer who puts into perspective the thoughts of many new millenials as they navigate the world and beyond. The recipient of many awards for her compelling blog and Twitter feed, Jamilah, the new content editor for Ebony.com has been featured on radio shows and in articles for her insight on issues ranging from relationships to identity.
Always in the middle of what is hot on Twitter, Dr. Goddess is one of the most engaged social media users on the web. Whether she is promoting her appearances as an actress and speaker or schooling an ill-informed reality show guest that planking is not a slavery term, Dr. Goddess does it with a certain panache that very few can emulate. An emerging social media guru and a highly educated culture critic, Dr. Goddess has created an online community with her brand, connecting people to the insightful and the controversial and making sense of it all.
Poetry seeps from the pores of Bassey Ikpi. A world-renowned performance poetry artist and a mental health advocate who has amassed a large following in the past few years as she courageously shares her personal struggles with depression, Bassey has found a niche in social media that fits perfectly with her artistic spirit and her humorous shares about culture, parenting and relationships. Her most recent creation is The Siwe Project, a global non-profit with the goal widening the public dialogue regarding the lived experiences of people of African Descent with mental illness. A Def Poetry Jam poet, Bassey is all over the web—whether you are watching her seemingly effortless talent on a YouTube video, reading her posts on sites like Huffington Posts or reading her often hilarious Twitter feed, you are sure to fall in love with Bassey Ikpi’s brand of life that is a mix of quirky and incredible.