July 15, 2019 Print

Social media has revolutionized the news and communications world, and the Free Market Foundation (FMF), a Hungary-based Atlas Network partner, recently used this growing platform to educate youth about liberty on a large scale. FMF partnered with the Paradigm Institute to release Freedom Vlog, a series of short videos introducing concepts of liberty. 

Freedom Vlog specializes in showing how policy affects everyday life in order to engage an audience that does not normally engage with politics. One video surprised viewers by revealing that Hungary imposes the highest value-added tax in the world. In response to the video, which advocated lower tax rates, one young journalist posted the lyrics from a socialist song in protest. “This either means that he thinks lowering taxes is a communist thing, and he commented in rebuke, or he himself is a communist and instigated against the content,” noted Máté Hajba, FMF Director. “Either way, it shows that young people have no idea about economic social issues, and there is a huge need for further education.” 

Although Freedom Vlog has faced several social media challenges, such as its Instagram account being hacked and alleged violations to Facebook policy, the series reached 300,000 viewers. Dorián Elek from Paradigm Institute contributed to the videos’ success with his creative insight after completing Atlas Network’s Lights, Camera, Liberty film workshop and using his newfound expertise to address specific, relatable Hungarian issues in short videos. According to Hajba, a Freedom Vlog video produced three times the viewership and metrics than FMF’s peak video from 2018. 

“We believe that a large proportion of these people have benefitted from encountering ideas and concepts that they never had before,” concluded Hajba. FMF achieved its goal of engaging youth from all backgrounds and areas of Hungary, introducing concepts of liberty through social media. 

Click here to view more of Freedom Vlog’s most successful videos (metrics do not reflect actual numbers, as the videos gained popularity through social media).