Between visibility and surveillance: Challenges to anti-corporate activism in social media

Julie Uldam

Publikation: Bidrag til bog/antologi/rapportBidrag til bog/antologiForskningpeer review


As activists move from alternative media platforms to commercial social media platforms they face increasing challenges in protecting their online security and privacy. While government surveillance of activists is well-documented in both scholarly research and the media, corporate surveillance of activists remains under-researched. This chapter examines BP’s surveillance of activists who criticize the company’s Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programme as ‘greenwashing’. In this way, it goes beyond corporations’ uses of big data and instead explores how they monitor and discuss strategies for responding to the activities of individual activists in social media. Theoretically, it draws on conceptions of visibility in social sciences and media studies as well as business-society interactions in the CSR literature and in media studies. Empirically, it draws on files from BP on specific civil society individuals obtained through Subject Access Requests under the UK Data Protection Act 1998 as well as press responses from BP.
TitelProtests in the Information Age : Social Movements, Digital Practices and Surveillance
RedaktørerLucas Melgaço, Jeffrey Monaghan
Antal sider20
ISBN (Trykt)9780415791403
ISBN (Elektronisk)9781315212357
StatusUdgivet - 2018

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