Images of protest in social media: Struggle over visibility and visual narratives

Christina Neumayer, Luca Rossi

Research output: Journal Article or Conference Article in JournalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


While political protest is essentially a visual expression of dissent, both social movement research and media studies have thus far been hesitant to focus on visual social media data from protest events. This research explores the visual dimension (photos and videos) of Twitter communication in the Blockupy protests against the opening of the European Central Bank headquarters in Frankfurt am Main on 18 March 2015. It does so through a novel combination of quantitative analysis, content analysis of images, and identification of narratives. The article concludes by arguing that the visual in political protest in social media reproduces existing visualities and hierarchies rather than challenges them. This research enhances our conceptual understanding of how activists’ struggles play out in the visual and contributes to developing methods for empirical inquiry into visual social media content.
Original languageEnglish
JournalNew Media & Society
Pages (from-to)1-18
Publication statusPublished - 26 Apr 2018


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