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Detailed research proposal-Role of social media on the 2011 london riots - Essay Example

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The Role of the Social Media on the 2011 London Riots Introduction In recent years, the social media has become a significant addition to the political, social, cultural, and economic relations and functions of most people and most countries of the world. The social media has become a major contributor to the way corporations are running their businesses with its use of Twitter and Facebook in promoting its products and detecting trends among user preferences and reviews…
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Detailed research proposal-Role of social media on the 2011 london riots
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Download file to see previous pages In recent years, since the dawn of the Arab Spring, it has also become a means of informing the public about political issues and of rallying the public towards collective action. This was very much apparent in 2011 when various riots and demonstrations were organized, spurred on, and won with the primary help of social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter. The so-called Facebook Revolution was seen in Egypt when various demonstrations against the ruling government were staged by the general population with the help of Facebook. This was also seen in London in 2011 from August 6-11 when various events led to various demonstrations in the British capital. During the riots and demonstrations, many of those participating did not cover their faces, even posing for pictures while they made off with stolen goods and posting them in the social networking sites (BBC, 2011). There are different theories which would help explain the impact of the social media on the 2011 London riots. One of these theories includes the social movement theory which indicates a useful foundation in understanding the movement of individuals with the end goal of managing collective actions and problems relating to individual movement participation (Dewey, et.al., 2012). This theory presents a context upon which the role of the social media can be further understood. Political struggles can manifest in different incarnations, including protest, collective action and contention (Tilly, 2011). Protests express shared ideals which are often observed in street politics. For collective action, this occurs where a specific group shares interests and acts based on such interests. Finally, contention includes making claims with parties also making demands affecting collective interests. The social movement theory argues that communities having strong network ties are more likely to go through collective actions as compared with those having weak ties. Strong social ties in networks often enable initial calls for participation in social movements, and later they ease the way towards participation as they decrease issues in mobilization. McAdam and Paulsen (1993) also argue that strong social ties help recruit individuals, as well as serve as effective communication tools in spreading messages for social movements across networks. To a large extent, just as the social media was used to draw in more participants, the social media also became a tool by which these rioters were apprehended for their illegal actions. The utility of the social media worked both ways (Denef, et.al., 2013). Cases of looting and vandalism were actually resolved by the police by looking through Flickr and Facebook, looking through galleries of pictures in order to identify perpetrators. Most of the riots were also organized and triggered through Twitter. At some point, Twitter was described as a tool for promoting gang violence (Williams, 2011). However, evidence also indicates that the riots were inspired by postings based on daily news from the media (Williams, 2011). Based on these circumstances, it would be logical to conclude that the social media has had a major role in the outcome of the 2011 London riots. The impact here refers to how the social media has helped in spreading word-of-mouth, impacting on the largest number of ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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