Connective Versus Collective Action in Social Movements: A study of Co - Creation of Online Communities

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In our modern society, technological revolution has changed the world and created a digital landscape where individuals live and interact across time and space. These interactions are at the core of our existence, as they define us as individuals and the networks we are part of (Castells, 2000). This process is influenced by two dynamics; the logic of collective action and the logic of connective action (Bennett & Segerberg, 2012). The logic of collective action is defined by formal organizational control, stronger commitment and collective identity framing (Bennett & Segerberg 2012). The logic of connective action is are sult of mediating technologies especially web 2.0 that inspire and affords emergent digitally networked action, based on large‐scale self‐organized, fluid and weak‐tied networks (Ibid.). These logics are investigated in three different social media movements; #YesAllWomen, #BlackLivesMatter and the #IceBucketChallenge by analyzing Twitter and Facebook data from key periods of these movements,through a net nographic study. In particular, this study has investigated the following research questions: How are the logics of collective and connective action reflected in online social media interactions? Andhow do these define the engagement with and co‐creation of online communities?The article has found that actors interacting within these social movements are self‐organizing through technological afford ances (e.g. using hashtags), thus utilizing technology as the organizing agent of interactions in large‐scale, weak‐tied networks with morphing boundaries. The nature of social media ensures that personalized action frames (e.g. personal stories or memes) and the self‐motivating act of voluntary sharing, as well how this act is reciprocated, is integral for the potential reach and impact of the movements. At the same time, actors in these movements are synergistically co‐creating dynamic communities, collectively forging a common cause and through joint efforts seeking to achieve a better outcome or social change. As a result the personalized action frames are articulated into a collective action frame, and despite the dynamic and weak‐tied nature, a united ‘we’ is constructed based on shared understandings and as a result some form of collective identity is forged.A framework is proposed illustrating how the social media interactions that are studied in the social movements reflect characteristics from both the logic of collective and connective action. The framework identifies how the technological revolution has influenced the logic of collective action, and how digitally networked action, based on the logic of connective action, can attain higher levels of focus and sustained engagement over time in order to avoid becoming chaotic and unproductive.

Bennett, L. and Segerberg, A. (2012). The logic of connective action. Information, Communication and Society, Vol. 15, Issue 5, pp. 739‐768
Castells, M. (2000). Materials for an exploratory theory of the network society. The British journal of sociology, 51(1), 5‐24.
Antal sider2
StatusUdgivet - 2016
BegivenhedConnected Life 2016 - University of Oxford, Oxford, Storbritannien
Varighed: 21 jun. 201622 jun. 2016


KonferenceConnected Life 2016
LokationUniversity of Oxford

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