When you swiped Twitter open this morning, did you see the hashtag #IAmCraftBeer streaming through your feed? The hashtag is now attached to hundreds of 140 characters-or-less bite-sized bios and selfies that, together, show the complex, diverse faces of people who relish being a part of the craft beer community.
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When you start following the stories connected to #IAmCraftBeer, you’ll see people sharing powerful, incredibly personal things about themselves, including details about their sexual orientation to their work life and family. You’ll even see a few self-proclaimed “crazy cat” ladies.
In a social climate where it often feels like the first instinct is to snear and attack (check out the anger people unleashed on our CraftBeer.com Facebook poll about pumpkin beer and pumpkin coffee two weeks ago), the #IAmCraftBeer Twitter stories will remind you why you love craft beer.
The hashtag came to life Monday when Dr. J. Nikol Jackson-Beckham, Ph.D., professor, researcher, writer and Diversity Ambassador for the Brewers Association (publishers of CraftBeer.com), decided to take a situation that unnerved her and used it to create some good.
1. Take selfie.
2. Tell us something about your wonderful, complex, individual self.
3. Tag your post with #IAmCraftBeer
Let’s create huge enduring reminder of the incredible diversity in our community!
Here we go…
— Dr. J. Jackson-Beckham (@jnikolbeckham) September 9, 2019
Her tweet reads:
I am asking for your help. I am enraged (see previous retweet for context). I want to channel this feeling into something positive. I want to demonstrate what an inclusive #craftbeer community looks like. So here’s what I am asking:
- Take selfie.
- Tell us something about your wonderful, complex, individual self.
- Tag your post with #IAmCraftBeer. Let’s create huge enduring reminder of the incredible diversity in our community!
Here we go …
In August, the Brewers Association released survey results about diversity among U.S. craft brewery employees. The survey results weren’t surprising, finding that the majority of employees at U.S. craft breweries are white males. But as BA Chief Economist Bart Watson, the man who crunched the numbers, pointed out: “You can’t measure future change unless you know where you are to begin with.”
The BA’s data accounted for brewery employees. As the beer community tries to kick the stigma that only white dudes like craft beer, Dr. J’s #IAmCraftBeer challenge shows the craft beer community is complex, celebratory, and inclusive of much more than one gender and one race.
Craft beer is often about more than the beverage itself. Breweries have the ability to create connection, create community, and create places where beer lovers feel like we belong. The #IAmCraftBeer tweets are telling that story.
What is yours?
I am borderline introverted, a classic overthinker, my own worst critic, diplomatic, fiercely determined. I left a job I loved b/c I wanted to be Ed in Chief at https://t.co/fSnK50lUyg. I OH but miss my GA peeps. I am a mom, wife, sister, daughter, aunt, runner. #IAmCraftBeer pic.twitter.com/bPtvfy7WeF
— Jess Baker (@craftcurious) September 10, 2019
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This article originally appeared on craftbeer.com