This paper attempts to explore the role of the internet in the processes of organization and mobilization of the ‘movement for alternative globalization’, which is often characterized as an ‘internet-based movement’. It reports the findings of a survey undertaken in the Paris 2003 European Social Forum (ESF), which asked 257 respondents about the contexts that mobilized them to participate in the ESF (political/voluntary organizations, friends/relatives, workplace/university, news media), as well as the modes and methods of communication that were used in each context. The findings question the claims about the internet-based character of this movement, as face-to-face contact seems to be the predominant mode of communication. The survey also challenges the much discussed potential of the internet to mobilize politically indifferent or marginalized individuals, as a comparison between users and non-users of the internet revealed that users tended to be mobilized for the ESF through political or voluntary organizations.
Keywords: European Social Forum, movement for alternative globalization, mobilization, survey, internet, Social movements
How to Cite:
Kavada, A., (2017) “Exploring the role of the internet in the ‘movement for alternative globalization’: The case of the Paris 2003 European Social Forum”, Westminster Papers in Communication and Culture 2(1), 72-95. doi: https://doi.org/10.16997/wpcc.9