The death of Nelson Mandela has obviously had a huge impact around the world – but thanks to the internet it’s not just people the news deems worthy who can share their memories – but anyone. I’m not just talking about Facebook and Twitter here – but gaming communities too – even Minecraft.
Check out this video, posted to YouTube by a kid who wasn’t in school due to risk of flooding. Maybe I’m just getting soppy in my old age but it’s a surprisingly emotive watch: As he builds he starts to ponder to himself Mandela’s life, legacy and place in history – and you can hear him trying to come to terms with both the nature of death, and the absence from the world of such a famous and influential figure… all whilst building a medieval-style house.
I think it’s uplifting – say what you will about the kids of today but they’re not all knife-wielding little bastards, but it turns out that they can be creative and contemplative too.
And another user produced this model of Mandela – complete with South African flag:
It might be tempting to belittle these tributes as silly or crass – but I think it’s fascinating to see the younger generation respond to news like this in the medium that they’ve made their own.