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Article
Publication date: 1 March 2011

Bridget Blodgett and Andrea Tapia

This paper aims to define and articulate the concept of digital protestainment, to address how technologies have enabled boundaries to become more permeable, and in which…

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to define and articulate the concept of digital protestainment, to address how technologies have enabled boundaries to become more permeable, and in which this permeability leads to the engendering of new cultures.

Design/methodology/approach

Two case studies, within Second Life and EVE Online, are examined to see how digital protestainment, through the lens of cultural borderlands, creates a hybridized culture. Recorded interviews and textual analysis of web sites are used to illustrate the concepts of play, work, and blended activities.

Findings

Within virtual environments the process of hybridization is not only increased in size, scope, form, and function. The borderlands process draws in cultural elements through a complex interchange between the online and the offline, in which hybridized cultural bits are carried out into other spaces.

Research limitations/implications

The success of the cases does not represent all digital protest examples and so this study is limited in its ability to generalize to the population of virtual protests. This study limits the realm of digital protestainment to virtual worlds but the concept could be applied to any form of virtual community.

Practical implications

Companies that host these worlds will need to become aware not only of what their audience is but also how that audience will mobilize and the likely outcomes of their mobilization. Virtual worlds offer organizational leaders a new resource for training, support, and recruitment.

Originality/value

The theoretical concept of cultural borderlands is expanded to the digital environment and introduced as a potentially new and useful tool to internet researchers.

Details

Information Technology & People, vol. 24 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-3845

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Book part
Publication date: 2 September 2019

Verena E. Wieser, Andrea Hemetsberger and Marius K. Luedicke

Whenever the news media feature brand-related moral struggles over issues such as ethicality, fairness, or sustainability, brands often find themselves in the position of…

Abstract

Whenever the news media feature brand-related moral struggles over issues such as ethicality, fairness, or sustainability, brands often find themselves in the position of the culprit. However, brands may also take the opposite position, that of a moral entrepreneur who proactively raises and addresses moral issues that matter to society. In this chapter, the authors present a case study of the Austrian shoe manufacturer Waldviertler, which staged a protest campaign against Austria’s financial market authorities in the wake of the authorities demanding that the company closes its alternative (and illegal) consumer investment model after 10 years of operation. In response to this demand, the company organized protest marches, online petitions, and press conferences to reclaim the moral high ground for its financing model as a way out of the crunch following the global credit crisis and as a way to fight unfair administrative burdens. The authors present an interpretive analysis of brand communication material and media coverage that reveals how this brand used protest rhetoric on three levels – logos, ethos, and pathos – to reverse moral standards, to embody a rebel ethos, and to cultivate moral indignation. The authors also show how the media responded to protest rhetoric both with thematic coverage of context, trends, and general evidence, and with episodic coverage focusing on dramatic actions and the company owner’s charisma. The authors close with a discussion of how protestainment, the stylization of a leader figure, and marketplace sentiments can ensure sustained media coverage of moral struggles.

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Book part
Publication date: 2 September 2019

Abstract

Details

The Contested Moralities of Markets
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78769-120-9

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Abstract

Details

Information Technology & People, vol. 24 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-3845

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Article
Publication date: 24 February 2012

Fay Cobb Payton and Lynette Kvasny

This paper seeks to present the Black blogosphere's discussion of the Jena 6 case to uncover how ethnic identity is performed discursively to promote social activism.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper seeks to present the Black blogosphere's discussion of the Jena 6 case to uncover how ethnic identity is performed discursively to promote social activism.

Design/methodology/approach

Through an analysis of Black blog postings reporting on the Jena 6 case, this case study chronicles the way in which Black audiences responded to this news story. The research chronicles the ways in which Black audiences responded to the Jena 6 news story and how Black blogs expanded participation in the discussion of events related to Black interests.

Findings

The findings point to critiques of dominant cultural meanings about race relations and racial injustice. In addition, the findings suggest that social media has become an additional medium that is effectively used by African Americans' in their historical struggle for civil rights. By chronicling the ways in which Black audiences responded to this news story, the paper demonstrates that Black blogs provide a useful space for discussing perceived racial injustice from a diverse African American cultural perspective. Moreover, Black bloggers are able to raise awareness of racial injustice within both the Black community and the broader US society and mobilize collective action.

Practical implications

New divides may be emerging because of limitations on what you can do on a mobile device. This increase in mobile internet access and the accompanying differences in internet experience heightens the need for studies that examine culturally salient behavioral aspects of use and interpersonal relationships characterized by social support, communication, and resource sharing.

Originality/value

Through an analysis of Black blog postings reporting on the Jena 6 case, this study chronicles the way in which Black audiences responded to this news story. The findings point to critiques of dominant cultural meanings about race relations and racial injustice. In addition, our findings suggest that the momentum of this social movement was based in the political and economic dynamics of a community; however, social media is enabling critical global, yet vigorous conversion of activism

Details

Information Technology & People, vol. 25 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-3845

Keywords

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