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Management and organization of activist profiles with a collective identity on social networks

Manifestació Feminista

Social media has facilitated the rise of digital activism, but individualistic logics and the high pace of publication make it difficult for the unity establishment of the feminist movement. UAB researchers have analysed the organization of feminist committees on social networks to analyse their problems and generate collective profiles.

Celina Navarro i Gemma Gómez-Bernal

The ways in which social media platforms are articulated have favoured the dissemination, connection and reach of digital feminist activism, which finds one of its greatest exponents in the #8M (International Women's Day) which has become a key movement. Spain's high participation rates in feminist mobilizations from 2017 onwards led to the creation of numerous organizing committees throughout the territory, whose presence and action extended to digital environments.

Through the results obtained from conducting interviews with activists from the different commissions in 2019 and 2021, and the analysis of the content posted on the Facebook, Twitter and Instagram profiles of each committee, the study analyses the organizational modes and communicative of these feminist groups on social platforms. This has allowed us to investigate how activist organizations establish protocols for joint publication on social media and how are the women that carry the weight of these digital activities.

Despite the opportunities noted in the use of social media, these pose new scenarios and challenges for new feminist groups which are digitally represented by women with different age profiles and technological literacy. In these environments, the traditional sense of community and unity characteristic of these organizations conflicts with the individual nature of social platforms, based on their individual and personal profiles and with highly demanding, volatile and ephemeral dynamics, which make it difficult to establish unified publication procedures and guidelines.

The high pace and constant exchange of content on these platforms hinder their collective use and represent a high responsibility for a small group of women who end up deciding what, how and when to publish in the profiles of organizations.

In turn, however, these committees consider online presence to be essential for their activity and identify certain common lines of content. Thus, the transmission of offline actions, the communication of information related to the International Women's Day strike, the transmission of knowledge and the publication of shared content in other media, are the main axes of the online activity of these committees.

Consequently, social media has become a help and at the same time an obstacle for feminist organizations. These are essential to get the messages and activities of feminist groups to many people and generate great mobilization, but at the same time, the structure and dynamics of these platforms make it difficult to transmit a unitary message and identity.

Celina Navarro i Gemma Gómez

Department of Audiovisual Communication and Advertising

Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona


Navarro, C. & Gómez-Bernal, G. (2022). The Use of Social Media by Spanish Feminist Organizations: Collectivity From Individualism. Media and Communication, 10(2), 93-103. https://doi.org/10.17645/mac.v10i2.5109

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