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The Role of Social Media in Internet Activism

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Annotated Bibliography. Curation process.

Tag words: social media; internet activism; identity;accessibility; affordances; PLN; collective activism; revolution. – heatherthaxter

Media Culture Society 2014 Markham 89 104. The Role of Social Media Networks in internet activism. Social Media in the Arab World Leading up to the Uprisings of 2011. WPCC vol9 issue2 timeline article sm.

Key articles in my research. I was able to request these from one of my 'nodes' in my PLN, as I didn't have a subscription. Most gratefully received! – heatherthaxter

Publications 25112015000 ICT Indicators October 2015 English.

Third Arab Bloggers Meeting (souce Al JAzeera) – heatherthaxter

The Middle of the Pyramid The Middle of the Pyramid. IndicatorsBrief052011 en. Howard et al arab spring.

Provides an analysis of the topic that I researched. It highlights the demographic involved - young, educated middle-class. This demographic seemed to be influential in the articulation and the logistics of the movement, resulting in collective action with all disenfranchised. – heatherthaxter

RAND MG778. Crowd participation. Blog.

This page is from a MOOC I've studied. Blogging is of particular interest to me as a platform of expressing self. The reflective aspect appeals to me and blogs played a key role in the protests I have researched. There is a certain vulnerability to writing a blog - an exposure of the thinking process. It is a medium that I want to examine in more detail. – heatherthaxter

Dana paper social media.

Although written a decade ago and is therefore somewhat dated, boyd & Ellison provide a historical background to a variety of social network sites - they differentiate between network and networking as they feel users are not necessarily looking to expand their networks through connecting with strangers, but rather strengthen existing networks. They highlight the relationship between online and offline networks and how the 'trace' left by SNS users 'offers unprecedented opportunities for researchers'. Much has changed since the writing of this paper but it has provided an insight into the assumed potential as perceived in the early days of SNS. In particular, the latent ties produced by software are now more than ever making possible the connections necessary for online activism. – heatherthaxter

New Media Society 2016 Wolover 185 200.

Wolover approaches the Tunisian revolution from the position of remediation of news coverage. His research identifies that agency was attributed very differently by Middle Eastern (AJE) and Western (NYT & The Guardian) news media. The former viewed the people as agents of change and new media only as a tool, whereas the latter privileged the tool. The causalities of such centre on cultural orientation, accessibility and dependency on digital technology, and news consumerism. I agree with his conclusion that it is a combination of technological and organic stances that enable revolution. People need the tools and the opportunity to mobilise, the tools cannot act independently of people. – heatherthaxter

Egypt protest 10.

A picture paints a thousand words. – heatherthaxter

Connective action. Social Media.

A page from a MOOC that I had undertaken for professional and personal development. – heatherthaxter

DemystifyingArabSpring. Juris Reflections on #Occupy Everywhere AE.

This paper highlights the aggregation of physical and digital spaces, a concept I would like to explore further. One point I have taken from this, and other papers, is that social media and the internet would seem to be enabling more youth to become politically active due to joining collectively to speak out against social injustices affecting all elements of diverse societies.This is a global phenomenon. The middle classes still seem to be the organisers of protest movements - they have the means and the access. – heatherthaxter


Although written a year before the period I was researching, the argument about mobilisation being instigated at grassroots level resonated with me in line with other research I'd read. Because only 20% of Egyptians used Facebook (at that time) they employed the strategy of using taxi drivers to spread the 'gossip' about the 'secret meeting' overheard when passengers spoke on their mobiles. This worked and 40,000 descended on Tahrir Square. – heatherthaxter

Twitter revolutions.

Christensen makes a valid point that we have to consider socio-political contexts when analysing social media as a tool for activism. Other articles in this collection also explore the agency of the actors and technology. I don't [yet] place myself in either camp of techno utopianism or techno dystopianism. Instead, I proceed with caution in 'spilling my ink' (to use Christensen's phraseology). – heatherthaxter

How BIG is Facebook?

I love Coldfustion videos for the formatting and for getting more than just the cold facts. Key point - FB's not only about connecting friends but is about looking forward to other ways in which connectivity is impacting upon societal interactions. – heatherthaxter

Coldfustion YouTube Stats, Channel Statistics.

I found this Youtube channel particularly helpful to my research in terms of its cultural contextualisation and engaging format. – heatherthaxter

The Surprising History of YouTube! RAND MG778. Wikileaks article. 9783957960467 Citizen Lobby.