back to home  
   
 
 
Home Blog Profiles Press Contact Archive Photogallery Students
 
 
 
The Acton Collection, Villa La Pietra  
             
 
La Pietra Dialogues On the World On-Line
BACK
 
 
Connective Action in European Mass Protest
Camilo Cristancho, Eva Anduiza -Universitat AutÚnoma de Barcelona1
Conference Paper
May 10, 2013

 

Online social media is becoming a core element in contentious politics with the growing
use of Twitter and Facebook and their normalization as mobilization channels. Research
on diffusion processes has made a breakthrough with the use of online traces and big data
from social media and multiple case studies have addressed the outcomes of events that
rely heavily on it. However, we know little about the effects of mobilization processes
that rely on social media and how these vary between contexts and demonstration types.
In this paper we address this question by looking into mass-demonstrations that occurred
in 9 European countries between December 2009 and June 2012. Based on protest
surveys and organizational data for 77 demonstrations, we analyze the characteristics and
the effects of emerging mobilization patterns based on intensive use of social media and
loose organizational affiliation. To what extent is this digitally networked action making
a difference in political involvement? Can digitally networked action (DNA) events and
traditionally collective action (TCA) events be convincingly distinguished? What are the
implications of digitally networked action for political participation and political
equality?
The first aim of the paper is to assess to what extent cases of DNA can be distinguished
from cases of TCA, not only in conceptual terms (as Benet and Segerberg 2012 do), but
also in empirical terms. We show that we can meaningfully distinguish cases of DNA and
TCA using two simple indicators: use of online social media as mobilization channels
and organizational embeddedness. We further explore differences between DNA and
TCA regarding the characteristics of the organizations involved and the personalization
of frames.
The second aim of the paper is to assess whether DNA significantly affects the
characteristics of the profile of the participant demonstrators. We show that this is indeed
the case. These findings provide new evidence on the effects of social media in
contentious politics and for the debate on the potential impact of internet use in reducing
political inequalities.
Keywords: protest, online social networks, political equality, collective action, internet

 

The paper analyzes the extent to which digitally networked action is making a difference in political involvement. Based on protest surveys for 57 demonstrations that occurred across 7 European countries between December 2009 and June 2011, we analyze the characteristics and the consequences of emerging mobilization patterns based on intensive use of online social networks and loose organizational affiliation. We find that protest events staged by coalitions based on social networks and loosely-coupled alliances make a difference in reaching previously uninvolved individuals and those with lower organizational engagement. Evidence of online social networks that enable individual linkages through the personalization of collective frames indicates a possible mechanism for this mobilization effect. These findings provide new evidence for the debate on the potential impact of internet use in reducing political inequalities.  Full paper

 

 
 
    print share print
 
   
DIALOGUES
STUDENTS
BLOG
twitter linkedin facebook facebook
 
 
                         
   

© 2012 NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

LINKS
NYU Florence
NYU Global
NYU Wagner

 

 

LOCATION

Villa La Pietra
Via Bolognese, 120
50139 Florence - Italy

 

 

CONTACTS

Phone +39 055 5007 557
Fax +39 055 5007 576
lapietra.dialogues@nyu.edu

 

 

 

  NEW YORK UNIVERSITY