The Centre for Internet and Society has just published a reader entitled “Digital Activism in Asia”. Edited by Shah, Sneha, and Chattapadhyay, the reader combines stories in multiple forms, including academic essays (one of them is mine), case-studies to grey literature that reveals and points to the debates around digital activism that have emerged in this particular context. The reader “attempts a crowd-sourced compilation that presents critical tools, organisations, theoretical concepts, political analyses, illustrative case-studies and annotations, that an emerging network of changemakers in Asia have identified as important in their own practices within their own contexts.” Continue reading [Book] Digital Activism in Asia Reader
A special issue on “Insurgencies, social media and the public city in Asia” (January 2014) from the International Development Planning Review is just out. It features six fascinating articles from Douglass (on insurgencies & public city in East and Southeast Asia), Padawangi (on Jakarta’s grassroot movement), Pandi (on Hindraf movement), Weiss (on new media activism in Southeast Asia), Zhang & Nyiri (on ‘walled’ activism in China), and myself (on theorization/conceptualization of online-offline spaces in social movement); with an intro from Douglass, Padawangi, & Marolt.
Please find below the newly published article on the 2010-2011 Tunisian uprising.
Framing Bouazizi: ‘White lies’, hybrid network, and collective/connective action in the 2010–11 Tunisian uprising
by Merlyna Lim, Arizona State University
cited as: Lim, M. (2013) Framing Bouazizi: ‘White lies’, hybrid network, and collective/connective action in the 2010–11 Tunisian uprising, Journalism: Theory, Praxis, and Criticism, 14(7): 921-941, doi:10.1177/1464884913478359
By delving into the detailed account of the Tunisian uprising, this article offers an explanation that sets the 2010 uprising apart from its precursors. The 2010 uprising was successful because activists successfully managed to bridge geographical and class divides as well as to converge offline and online activisms. Such connection and convergence were made possible, first, through the availability of dramatic visual evidence that turned a local incident into a spectacle. Second, by successful frame alignment with a master narrative that culturally and politically resonated with the entire population. Third, by activating a hybrid network made of the connective structures to facilitate collective action – among Tunisians who shared collective identities and collective frames – and connective action – among individuals who sought more personalized paths to contribute to the movement through digital media.
Full text is available here: http://JOU.sagepub.com/content/14/7/921.full.pdf+html
or for those who have no access via university library, the pdf copy is here.
Lim, M. (2013). The Internet and Everyday Life in Indonesia: A New Moral Panic?. Bijdragen tot de Taal-, Land-en Vollenkunde, 169, 133-147. [PDF] Continue reading [Publication] The Internet and Everyday Life in Indonesia: A New Moral Panic?
I would like to share my newly published article:
Lim, M. 2013, Many Clicks but Little Sticks: Social Media Activism in Indonesia, Journal of Contemporary Asia, DOI:10.1080/00472336.2013.769386
To link to this article: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00472336.2013.769386
Drawing on empirical cases from Indonesia, this article offers a critical approach to the promise of social media activism by analysing the complexity and dynamics of the relationship between social media and its users. Rather than viewing social media activism as the harbinger of social change or dismissing it as mere “slacktivism,” the article provides a more nuanced argument by identifying the conditions under which participation in social media might lead to successful political activism. In social media, networks are vast, content is overly abundant, attention spans are short, and conversations are parsed into diminutive sentences. For social media activism to be translated into populist political activism, it needs to embrace the principles of the contemporary culture of consumption: light package, headline appetite and trailer vision. Social media activism is more likely to successfully mobilise mass support when its narratives are simple, associated with low risk actions and congruent with dominant meta-narratives, such as nationalism and religiosity. Success is less likely when the narrative is contested by dominant competing narratives generated in mainstream media.
Interested to read a full version of the article?
For those who have access from the university library, please download here (I share it online in my website but I also would like to push Taylor & Francis to give free access — if my article has a very high readership it’s more likely they’ll give free access).
For those who are not affiliated with any university, please download here for a free e-print.
“… In grappling with multiple identities and multiple realities, the reality of everyday life is experienced as reality par excellence. Micro narratives that are closer to the everyday life experience are embraced more openly, resulting in the plurality of voices, allowing for differences, nuances, and even counter-hegemonic voices. The closer to home the issue resonates, the more conversations take place. Life is local, even in the global blogosphere.” Continue reading [Publication] Life Is Local in the Imagined Global Community
Just out, the newest publication of the Online Collective Action Lab at ASU.
Agarwal, N., Lim, M., Wigand, R. Raising and Rising Voices: Cyber-Collective Movements in the Female Muslim Blogosphere, Business & Information Systems Engineering, DOI: 10.1007/s12599-012-0210-z [Download]
It is also available in German
Agarwal, N., Lim, M., Wigand, R. Meinungsäußerung und-bildung in sozialen Medien: Ein neuer methodischer Ansatz zur Untersuchung cybersozialer Bewegungen,Wirtschaftsinformatik, DOI: 10.1007/s11576-012-0317-3. [Download]
A preliminary (and much shorter) version of this article was presented at the ECIS conference last year. Continue reading [Publication] Raising and Rising Voices
My essay, titled “Reality Bites: The Digitally Mediated Urban Revolutions” is published in the Architectural Review. It is available for viewing online if you register (free registration). Once registered, you’d be able to read other essays (which are interesting) too. If you’re too lazy to register, you can download the pdf version here.
When I was an architecture student in Bandung, Indonesia, I always dreamed about getting published in two world architectural magazines — The Architectural Record and the Architectural Review. Even though I never stop designing and drawing, obviously I retired early from the architecture profession and totally forgot that I ever had such dream. I was too busy pursuing many other dreams, I guess. Early this month, I was contacted by the AR editor whether I’d like to contribute a broader view essay. So that’s it — strangely, one of my forgotten dreams came true….
To deepen our understanding of the relationship between social media and political change during the Egyptian uprising of early 2011, events in Tahrir Square must be situated in a larger context of media use and recent history of online activism. For several years, the most successful social movements in Egypt, including Kefaya, the April 6th Youth, and We are all Khaled Said, were those using social media to expand networks of disaffected Egyptians, broker relations between activists, and globalize the resources and reach of opposition leaders. Social media afforded these opposition leaders the means to shape repertoires of contention, frame the issues, propagate unifying symbols, and transform online activism into offline protests. Continue reading [Publication] Clicks, Cabs, and Coffee Houses: Social Media and Oppositional Movements in Egypt, 2004–2011
I just want to re-post something I posted in the Participatory Media Lab’s blog a month ago.
Based on “Media Concentration” section in on the Media report I posted earlier, I generated several maps of media concentration below. The updated section on Media Ownership can be downloadable from here.