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Title: Social media as alternative public sphere for citizen participation and protest in national politics in Zimbabwe: the case of #thisflag
Authors: Sabao, Collen
Chikara, Tendai Owen
Keywords: Social Media
Alternative Public Sphere
Citizen Participation
Protest in National Politics
Issue Date: 2020
Publisher: IGI Global
Series/Report no.: African Studies: Breakthroughs in Research and Practice : p.15;
Abstract: The chapter examines and discusses the role and communicative potential of social media based platforms in citizen political participation and protests in Zimbabwe specifically focusing on the #thisflag movement on Facebook, Twitter and Whatsapp. #thisflag is a social media-based platform that rose to challenge the Zimbabwean government over the political and economic decay as well as rampant corruption characterising the country contemporarily. While a new phenomenon to Zimbabwe and Zimbabwean politics, the impact and communicative potential of social media as an alternative public sphere was recently tested in nationwide protest stayaway organised through the Facebook and Twitter movement under the #thisflag handle/brand. This chapter discusses the manners in which such social media platforms impact national politics in Zimbabwe as well as globally, specifically looking at the #thisflag movement as a case study.
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