Online Activism of Team Anna Hazare

Topics: Social network service, Facebook, Twitter Pages: 15 (4631 words) Published: June 11, 2013

Sreeja Sasidharan,AJKMCRC

Last year India witnessed a major civil society movement under the leadership of Mr Anna Hazare which was against corruption in the country. This particular movement got much attention in the online media especially social networks, blogs and micro blogs etc. The team’s effort was to introduce Janlokpal(People’s Ombudsman) bill in Indian Parliament in which prime minister ,mps should come under this. The corruption reports on Commonwealth Games, 2G spectrum, Adarsh Flats etc,were the key factors that prompted Hazare team to work for passing the Jan Lokpal Bill. The Non Violent/Gandhian means of protest were adopted by them like Sathyagraha, sit –one s,etc. The group also communicated their ideas through the cyber space incorporating various tools like social networking (Facebook),micro blogging (Twitter), Video Sharing (You Tube) Blogs and websites. DEFENITION

The advent of ICT the individuals, communities as well as the commercial institutes and the government information and means of communication is now opened their own windows in the cyber space which makes human being as the digital being. The mobilization of cohorts and organization of events are now done by advanced technology like e-mails, shares and likes. Since it has become the part of routine life of the people, it is now used widely as a means of activism. It is also argued that many recent social movements would be less active or effective without e-mail and internet. It can be termed numerously like digital campaigning, digital activism, online organizing, electronic advocacy, cyber activism, e-campaigning and e-activism, etc According to Vegh (2003) Online activism has been defined a politically oriented movement that functions using the,the activist may use the internet either as an additional communication channel to enhance communication or as the only mode of action ,taking the form of a virtual sit –in or online direct action. According to the Institute for Politics, Democracy & the Internet, what they call "Online Political Citizens" (OPCs) are "seven times more likely than average citizens to serve as opinion leaders among their friends, relatives and colleagues”. The leading net research scholar Steve Jones (1994) defined social networks as a set of relations such as friendship, co-working or information exchange, he adds that internet is not only a technology but sn engine of social change one that has modified work habits ,education, social relation generally and may be most important ,our hopes and dreams. Its social space, a milieu, made up of, and made possible by communication. Be it riots in London or the revolutionary wind that passed through the Arab Spring nations, Occupying Wall Street agitations we can see the crucial element of cyber activism get involved. HISTORY OF ONLINE ACTIVISM

The pioneer in using cyber protest was Dr. Daniel Mengara, a Gabonese scholar and activist living in political exile in New Jersey in the United States by creating a website in French titled Bongo Doit Partir (Bongo Must Go) inspiring a revolutionary change for the 29 year old Bongo rule in the country.It instigated agitation in the same place . In the same year 1998,EZLN the rebels group in Mexico used the cell phones to network with the developed world activist and helped to create anti globalization group known as People Global Action (PGA). PGA continued to call for "global days of action" and rally support of other anti-globalization groups in this way. In 1999 Indymedia was formed to provide grass root coverage of protest against WTO in Seattle. But the first use of social networking websites by dissident groups taking part in a civil revolt was reported in April 2009 in Moldova, a small country between Romania and...
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