Abstract - The Information Society 33(4)


Undermining anarchy: Facebook’s influence on anarchist principles of organisation in occupy Wall Street

Thomas Swann and Emil Husted

Drawing on concepts rooted in cybernetics and anarchist political theory, the paper argues that the shift in Occupy Wall Street from being a physical protest camp in late 2011 to an online movement in 2012 coincided with a shift in social media activity. Analysis of Facebook activity suggests a move from functional to anatomical hierarchy and a corresponding move from many-to-many communication to one-to-many communication. In conclusion, we argue that this development served to undermine the movement’s anarchist principles of organisation.


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