Fair Copyright for Canada: Lessons for Online Social Movements from the First Canadian Facebook Uprising
MetadataShow full item record
Despite their growing importance, the political effectiveness of social media remains understudied. Drawing on and updating resource mobilization theory and political process theory, this article considers how social media make “political engagement more probable,” and the determinants of success for online social movements. It does so by examining the mainstreaming of the Canadian “user rights” copyright movement, focusing on the Fair Copyright for Canada Facebook page, created in December 2007. This decentralized, grassroots, social media-focused action – the first successful campaign of its kind in Canada and one of the first in the world – changed the terms of the Canadian copyright debate and legitimized Canadian user rights. As this case demonstrates, social media have changed the type and amount of resources needed to create and sustain social movements, creating openings for new groups and interests. Their success, however, remains dependent on the political context within which they operate.