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Activism, in order to effect change in society, activists advocate, obstruct, direct, or interfere in many aspects of social, political, economic, and environmental transformation with the goal of moving society in the path of a perceived better good Mandatory building in the community (including writing letters to newspapers), petitioning elected officials, running or contributing to a political campaign, preferential patronage (or boycotting) of businesses, as well as demonstrative forms of activism such as rallies, street marches, strikes, sit-ins, and hunger strikes are all examples of forms of activism.

In everyday life, activism may be shown in a number of ways, including via the production of art (artivism), computer hacking (hacktivism), or simply in the manner that one chooses to spend one's financial resources (economic activism). For example, refusing to buy clothes or other goods from a company as a form of protest against the exploitation of employees by that firm may be considered an act of activism. Collective action, on the other hand, is typically the most visible and effective type of activism, in which a large number of people join together to organise a protest in order to have a greater overall influence. A social movement is a group of people who join together with a same goal, organise themselves, and keep going for an extended period of time.