Environmental Mobilizations Through Online Networks: An Analysis of Environmental Activism on Turkey’s Twittersphere
This study explores and elucidates the nature and dynamics of environmental activism mediated via Twitter in Turkey. Drawing on the Twitter data, we show that two different forms of environmentalism are being pursued on this platform. There is, on the one hand, mainstream environmentalism of relatively established actors, and, on the other, confrontational/critical environmentalism of new actors. Unlike the former, the latter politicizes environmental issues to its full extent. While the actors pursuing mainstream environmentalism tend to act individually and use Twitter rather as a broadcast platform, the actors of confrontational/critical environmentalism form connections, interact, and engage in concerted action to voice environmental concerns, thereby incubating an environmental movement on Twitter within the increasingly authoritarian Turkish context. Our findings suggest that Twitter performs highly different functions within the same context depending on the discourses, identities, and interests of environmental actors.