Jamming The Political With “Intergalactic Peace” – Constitution Of An Anti-Racist Online S
Keywords:organizing, social movements, facebook, political jamming, anti-racism
Online environments such as social media offer new ways for citizens to engage in collective action and form social movements. Collective action is an inherently communicative phenomenon: it includes connecting people, communicating messages to these people, and coordinating the contributions of these individuals (Flanagin, Stohl & Bimber, 2006; Kavada 2016). Following this proposition, this paper investigates how a social movement is constituted as an organization through communication on digital media platforms. This study builds on the CCO approach of organizational studies and sees organizations being constituted in communication (e.g., Cooren et al., 2011). Social media platforms enforce openness to the process of constitution (Kavada, 2016). Hence, organizations are not only constituted by their internal communication, but also by “a network of relations between organizations and their public sphere” (Raupp, 2011). From this perspective we analyze the online presence of Loldiers of Odin, an activist group created as a parody to the anti-immigration group Soldiers of Odin. The group makes their public appearances dressed as clowns. We conceptualize the group’s activities as a form of political jamming (Cammaerts, 2007), a creative way to counter-communicate to the racist movement of Soldiers of Odin. Using network analysis combined with rhetorical analysis we trace the process of collective agency constituting itself through communicative episodes on a Facebook page (Blaschke, Schoeneborn, & Seidl, 2012). In particular, we show how novel and non-institutionalised forms of political expression act as constitutive elements for the emerging organization.