For One Democratic State
in the whole of Palestine (Israel)


FOR One Man, One Vote



Activists and Media

An intricate relationship

By: Johannes Wahlström, Stockholm University


1. Introduction
When dealing with political power one often discusses ways of influencing decision-making. In liberal democracies the conventional way of exercising political power is through official channels such as parliamentary elections. Representative democracy prescribes ballot casting as the sole legitimate means of effecting political decisions, hereby being the cornerstone of “democracy”. There is however a variety of other channels questioning this monopoly, ranging from lobbying to pure extortion. This essay will assume firstly, that in liberal democracies, political decisions are not taken solely in official political structures, and secondly, that ways of influencing these decisions can go through a variety of alternative channels. If we disregard from direct pressure on decision-makers, we see that the most common way of influence is through public opinion, a form of indirect pressure. In modern society mass media is crucial for this type of influence. Since every occurrence cannot be given the same space in the public debate, there are doubtlessly more or less important ones. This leads us to the logic of mass media, meaning that there are certain premises influencing the portrayal of the world. Neither is it a secret that people feel varyingly strong about different topics, and would like them more salient. The combination of these two factors is the core of the following essay, as we shall from the perspective of democracy and power ask ourselves about the relationship between mass media and activism. The questions raised are if media can be used in promoting ones ideas and how media receives and portrays these actions. The vantage point will be the popular notion that media encourages sensationalistic and violent actions.

As activism in general and specifically the following analysis is lacking in empirical studies it shall foremost be seen as an analytical framework for future scholarship. With this focal point it will be possible to examine activist perspectives, as well as conducting comparative studies regarding media depiction. The purpose of this paper will hereby not be to uncover truths regarding specific activists and their relationship to media, but rather to form a general conception concerning the intricate relationship between activists and media.

2. Theoretical framework
2.1 Activism
Throughout the past decades countless organisations have been created for political influence outside the state, in which activism has been a strong and growingly popular method for this influence. Political activism will be defined as a way of influencing political decision-making and its agenda through, as Oxford dictionary describes it, vigorous action. Activism is hereby the use of extraordinary forces for political pressure, where terrorism is a subgroup in its extreme form. It can be debated if lobbying should be considered political activism, but for the sake of demarcation it will be more fruitful to limit ourselves to tangible and purposely visible action.

Before understanding activism we must ask ourselves what political decisions activists are trying to influence. Furthermore, if political power is not confined to the parliament, what shall be considered political decision-making? Not to annihilate it by claiming that everything is political, one can say that political power is in the eye of the beholder, or the activist, meaning that wherever there are activists, there is political power. This is however an insufficient description since in accordance with Luke’s third dimension, power is not always visible or conscious. We can however in accordance with Aristotle say that political decisions are those that deal with collective problems in the Polis. In order for the citizens to live “the good life” it is hereby required that they rule and are ruled in turn. In other words politics can be defined as decisions taken that affect a group of people (physically as well as emotionally); the larger the group and stronger the influence, the stronger is the political power and decision-making. Circumventing official channels of influence, activists hereby attempt to influence decisions that affect a group of people.The economical elite has adapted to the role of media where “in a recent survey, business leaders named the media the most powerful institution in U.S. society” (Ryan 1991:8). Hereby media is of utter importance also for activists when it comes to influencing decision-making.

2.2 The logic of Media
There is a common belief among journalists and viewers alike that states that media ought to be objective. According to liberal-pluralist traditions, the freedom of choice and a diversity of media will lead to a spectrum of views and information (Schulman 1990:114). Contradicting this will lead to great controversy. However, there can be no doubt that certain topics and views receive greater attention than others. According to a more critical analysis, one ought not to overlook the ideological functions of media, where the ideas of a small number of people are disseminated in the pretext of the common will (ibid). When certain topics are addressed and explained by media they are hereby interpreted through the ruling ideology and depicted in a certain way. Activists trying to bring a topic to the public agenda will hereby be interpreted through a certain discourse. The fact that media attempts to be objective and apolitical, generally means that one does not support changes in society, upholding status quo, which in itself is a conservative political stance. This means that official views and “facts” are promoted, whilst contesting ideas are simplified and downplayed, ignoring history and context (Ryan 1991:217).There must be certain selectivity, when it comes to the output of media; hereby media tells us what to think about. By setting the public debate media has a primary role in influencing the saliency of certain topics (see Manning 2001), affecting the views of people and the political agenda. In liberal democracies most media have to consider audience figures, hereby they are influenced by sensationalism as not to be beaten by competitors. This means that newspapers and channels, not to disappoint their audience, join in on each other’s stories and scoops. Since the supply of information is homogenised (Bourdieu 1998:104) we can, despite of minor diversity, talk of media as a common phenomenon. Hereby influencing the media can become a conscious and highly ideological occurrence where activists can make their voices heard.

3. Media as a channel of influence
Since activist attempt to influence not only decision-making, but also the public agenda, we can ask ourselves how activists make use of mass media, and challenge mainstream and official interpretations and views. An obvious example of the significance of activism is the unauthorized demonstrations held at Tiananmen Square in 1989, which by far “overshadowed the authorized ceremonies taking place simultaneously inside the Great Hall of People” (Wasserstrom 1995:207). Obviously one cannot disregard the ideological climate in which this incident was portrayed (this will be discussed later), as the Western World would gladly magnify the faults of its foes. It is however clear that the actions of a relatively small amount of people could, with the help of media, make a massive statement and inflict damage upon a regime.One can distinguish between activists dealing with unofficial (i.e. economical) political power, and official (i.e. parliamentary) political power, where boycotts are a way of influencing economical power[1]. Friedman claims that media-oriented, as opposed to market-oriented boycotts (it could be argued that this division is pointless since all boycotts are in some way media-oriented) are conducted by discrediting the name of corporations in the eyes of as big an audience as possible (see Friedman 1999). This is of course applicable to official power as well, as portrayed in the example of the Tiananmen demonstration. Hereby mass media is the most effective (if not the only) way of disseminating a message. In order of being covered by mass media, activists are resorted to adopt its logic, namely that of sensationalism. This has certain implications. When it comes to boycotts, Friedman, in an activist-handbook fashion, says that one must have a simplified message, a slogan, and that one’s actions ought to be visible, with for example demonstrations.Boycotts are by no means unique when it comes to influencing the media. Gerris claims that terrorists can enhance their actions news value by the degree of violence, where more violence leads to more media attention (Gerris 1992:46). Symbolism and spectacular deeds are other ways of appealing to media (ibid), and need not necessarily be violent. It is important hereby to understand activism (as well as destructive activism, namely “terrorism”) as a form of communication, where the importance of the deed is the message and its symbolic values, and not necessarily the deed itself. Or as Schmid and Graaf put it “without communication there can be no terrorism” (Schmid and Graaf 1982:9), this does however not necessitate media, but since media is the primary form of modern communication, it is the most effective way of transmitting a message.For twenty years the world had taken little notice of the fate of two and a half million exiled Palestinians. When a small number of them carried their struggle from the Israeli frontiers to the heart of the Western world they were able to command media attention (ibid: 27). Their terrorism hereby primarily served as an instrument of mass communication, drawing the attention of the world to the Palestinian movement and its purposes. If one regards the aim of this terrorism to attract public attention and setting the agenda, success was imminent as the Palestinian question is one of the most salient topics today. This did however not guarantee success in promoting their purposes, as the public opinion, primarily in the U.S. did not function as the political lever one had hoped. The public did not sympathise with the Palestinian message portrayed by media, and thereby neither attempted to affect the regime.

3.1 Public lever
If one believes that activists (but also others) can use media to alter the perception of people, one follows the ideas of the Frankfurt School meaning that people can be manipulated into believing certain things. The common critique against this notion is that it regards people as “victims of conspiratorially constructed and deliberately wielded capitalist powers of manipulation” (Nava 1991:161). The critique is however not entirely relevant as there need not be a self-conscious manipulator, it is rather a structural manipulation, where media is part of an ideological framework. Media reporters are not commonly aware of their discursive bias, as they perceive their reporting as objective. Although activists intend to alter the perception of an audience, they do not see it as manipulation, rather as opening their eyes, or as Wapner says concerning environmental activism, “[t]hey are being “stung”, as it were by an ecological sensibility” (Wapner 1995:326). In this case people can indeed be manipulated (especially emotionally) despite the lack of a conscious manipulator. Or as Gorgias ones put it -Rhetoric is powerful because people have opinions, but not knowledge. They forget the past, don't know the present, and can't predict the future; this limitation of experience and subjectivity of opinion is what makes them vulnerable to persuasion by speech, even an unjust speech.Media oriented activism often implies a personification and a simplification of a problem, of which Greenpeace is a good example. According to Wapner, Greenpeace tried to change interpretive frames of the audience through media stunts, with for example images of whaling, where the boats were perceived as Goliath and the whales as David (the contrary to the classical image of Moby-Dick). In doing this, only one side of the conflict is revealed, and without problematizing it the debate does not go deep enough, leaving it vulnerable to counterattacks. Wapner continues by claming that “[r]aising awareness through media stunts is not primarily about changing governmental policies” (Wapner 1995:322); but in effecting peoples perception about certain topics, sentiments can “reverberate throughout various institutions and collectivities” (ibid.).Friedman’s (1999) term surrogate boycotts, by which he means, pressuring of one part that in turn pressures another, is applicable to the discussion of media oriented activism. In this case the surrogate can be defined as the audience, which works as a political lever, influencing stronger institutions. In other words, public enlightenment is in this case not a goal in itself but only a method for creating power and influence. From a democratic perspective, where one endorses an enlightened citizenship, this is indeed dubious, as information is not used for a public debate, but rather for emotional extortion (It is however not as simple as that, since contesting views can indeed initiate a public debate.One of the major goals of activists is to challenge ideas that are taken for granted. In media, news is hereby turned into contested terrain. Or as Ryan puts it “[t]he news is an opportunity for challengers, at a minimum, to point out that the establishment view is not the only “natural” way to look at a problem and, at best to present an alternative” (Ryan 1991:4). From this perspective even simplified alternatives can initiate debate. In other words, as media portrays a deviant perspective lacking “contextual and interpretive reporting of background issues” (Picard 1993:87), it can still be invigorating for the public debate as it can move into other arenas. Alternative media is here often depicted as an arena for alternative voices and a possibility for deeper discussions.

3.2 Activism and alternative media
“Often a fact doesn’t seem true if it hasn’t been on TV; a political perspective lacks credibility when it lacks media exposure. While circulating figures may be low, it is only in the alternative press that radically different perspectives get a fair hearing and it is here that activists develop opposition views” (Ryan 1991:26). It seems to be popular in our days to talk of Information Technology as the new forum for emancipation, people will be able to interact, communicate and participate in decision-making. It is furthermore said that the public arena will no longer be held by the powerful (see Deibert). We are given examples of how vigilant citizens inflict damage to gigantic corporations, and we praise this courage and the new democratic arena. Indeed IT and the Internet have questioned the monopoly of mass media as the sole provider of truth.Peretti is one of those who, using the Internet, managed to reach a massive audience, hereby threatening the gigantic corporation Nike. Reaching as many as 15 million people (Peretti 2001:4) he managed to question Nike’s ethics, and place it on the public agenda. Surprised by the immensity of the campaign, mass media made a massive thing out of it, and Peretti himself started lecturing on how to perform “culture jamming” as well as writing handbooks on Internet activism. It is not surprising that in the light of this, many people perceive the new technologies as emancipative, one must however remember that Peretti’s activism would have passed largely unnoticed had it not been for mass media. Despite of all, on a global scale, he reached a relatively small amount of people through the Internet; it was only thanks to mass media's sensationalistic character that his message reached truly global proportions. In other words, instead of claiming that the Internet has become an alternative way to set the public agenda, it seems more plausible that the Internet has to some extent become an alternative arena for sensationalistic (media-oriented) activism, whereby the rules of media must be followed. This means that political participation is largely confined to its first dimension, with attempts in influencing political power. This is of course a gross generalization, since IT can indeed be a forum for debate, but there is a risk that it will merely be an arena for deviant voices. Although alternative media can influence the output of mass media, the hegemony of mass media seems to prevail in setting the public agenda.

4. Consequences of media orientation
Claiming that media-oriented activism is resorted solely to as a way of influencing political decisions becomes questionable, as media is a primary arena for political debate. In trying to influence people’s opinions, activism questions general norms of the public discourse and can hereby create a more critical and intellectual citizenship[2]. In this sense, activism, even though it is channelled through the discourse of mass media, has an invigorating effect on democracy by creating a discussion. The debate created is however far from always positive for the goal of the activists, as it seems difficult to know how media will interpret the message.A few years ago some youngsters, fighting for animal rights, started liberating animals in farms and vandalising fur shops. It is obvious that the goal of these activists was to get medial attention; they wanted to change the public debate regarding animal rights. However, instead of focusing on their aim, media focused on their means and labelled the activists as terrorists (a large number of them did indeed “terrorize” both consumers and producers into not daring carrying nor producing fur). Hereby the public debate was largely about the deeds of the maladjusted terrorists instead of their message. As the years went by the public debate however became more focused on animal rights. It is of course difficult to tell how much of the change is due to the action of the activists, but the signal they received is that it clearly played a large role. This means that media encourages activist groups not only in being sensational but even violent. Friedman mentions long-term and short-term victories, even if violent activities can bring short-term losses, they may indeed have effect in the long run.As one realises that sensational activism is encouraged by mass media, one must, no mater how much one despises violence, before condemning “riots” in Seattle, Prague, Gothenburg or Geneva, understand that without violence there is a great chance that the world would not have known about the resistance against neo-liberalism. From a democratic perspective this is highly troublesome, if violence pays, democracy is threatened. But if violence and sensational action is the only (effective) way to influence decision-making in the current political and medial power structure, democracy is also threatened. It is from this perspective that we must understand the notion of terrorism.

4.1 Media depiction
Since the primary definer, the one who has legitimacy to define a conflict (see Manning p14), is on the top of the hierarchy of the social structure, activists are defined through a certain ideology. The most common bias that permeates media is that it defines challenger perspectives and ideologies from within the dominant ideology (Ryan 1991:68). An activist trying to use the media is hereby dependent on where his values are in regard to the ruling ideology of society, when it comes to how actions will be described. Political activism must hereby be seen in its full social context to understand its relationship to the media. A violent activist that is well regarded in the public discourse will be referred to and framed differently than one that is disliked, despite the fact that their action may be the same. One side’s terrorist is another side’s freedom fighter; the definition “seems to hinge upon notions of right and wrong, as well as interests” (Onduwide 2001:31). This means that the use of media and thereby the success of an action is very unreliable.Stone throwing can be seen as a symbolical (although violent) form of activism, which in the case of the Middle-East conflict is indeed media-oriented (see i.e. Hannerz, Reporting from Jerusalem[3]). By showing the Israeli military superiority and brutality many Palestinians hoped to win the fight over the audience, for use as a political lever. The result was however stunningly dissimilar in different countries. In the U.S. the stone-throwers were framed as terrorists (see Abunimah), while in Sweden they were largely martyrs and children (see Dominique). The public opinion seemed to follow the same course. This is a typical example of the unreliability of mass media as a channel of influence.

A reason (except for ideology) for why activists are not entirely successful in using media for their purpose is that they are not alone in using this channel. There are a variety of other groups and organisations that constantly attempt to shape the public agenda. The 17th of December Greenpeace activists attempted to disrupt a Japanese whale-hunt. The expedition in charge of the hunt called the activists “eco-terrorists”. Greenpeace on the other hand claims that they were met with water cannons (SVT 17/12). This is a typical example of how one attempt to promote ones perception and ideology in media.

4.2 Terrorism
From the perspective of sensationalistic violence we must further analyse the phenomenon of terrorism. Oxford dictionary describes a terrorist as a person who uses or favours violent and intimidating methods of coercing a government or community. It is however clear that the term terrorism is not objective. “Terrorism, like crime or any other phenomenon is a social creation” (Onwudiwe 2001:104), applicable to activists whom one does not agree with.It is furthermore important to understand medias labelling of acts of violence as it influences “tremendously, the audience’s perceptions of the perpetrators of the act” (Odasuo and Kenoye 1991:3). Since those in power define terrorism through a certain discourse, via for example laws[4], (mainstream) media, by promoting official facts and views, most often follows these definitions. This means that authorities can influence how people perceive violent acts. The result of this can be seen as the U.S. government labelled the Contras in Nicaragua as freedom fighters while the PLO were portrayed as terrorists (Onwudiwe 2001:110-213), hereby media largely followed the same line. In the mentioned case the primary definer was the U.S. and due to its position in the World System its definitions became dominant (Ibid). This is also the reason for the usage of the word “counterterrorism” in the public debate and the fact that state terrorism is rarely defined as terrorism.There is an ongoing debate about the role media plays in violent and terrorist actions. Authorities tend to claim that media is largely responsible as it disseminates the ideas of terrorists, which is perceived as the goal of the terrorists. This can be seen as the U.S. government, in regard to the attacks in Washington and New York, asked media to perform a sort of self-censorship when broadcasting the speeches of suspected terrorists. This perception is rooted in the idea that reporting “affects public opinion and can change the political climate in a country” (Shmid and Graaf 1982:142). A contrary perception is that terrorists succeed only if authorities react against the public will (Paletz 1992:9). According to this perspective media can in fact reduce violence since it does not give terrorists the publicity they desire, and depict their deeds as bad (Picard 1991:51).Both these perceptions are however flawing in the fact that they perceive terrorism as a form of propaganda, where the activist’s sole aim is to disseminate his views. If one however regards activism as a means of setting the public agenda and affecting what is thought of, the goals can indeed be met without persuasion. Authorities need not act against public will, the public will may very well be changed by an altered agenda. Indeed, not all publicity is good publicity, but bad publicity can be better than no publicity at all.
5. Activism, hope or despair?

Many social scientists seem to applaud the development of political “grass root” organisations; they see it as a rejuvenation of democracy and politics. The debate has largely been on how to democratise the organisations and how to include them in the official political arena. What this debate overlooks is primarily that these organisations do not necessarily want to be part of this arena, since they feel that it cannot serve their purposes. This is the prime reason for their existence. Secondly the debate tends to overlook the fact that the reason for the mushrooming of these organisations is a democratic deficiency, if it were possible (easier) to influence decision-making through the official arenas, more people would use them, as opposed to virtually globally shrinking electoral participation.The homogenisation of media is here also a strong suspect when it comes to placing the guilt on someone. If it where easier for “deviant” voices and alternative ideologies to participate in the public arena, it seems plausible that the need for sensationalistic activism would diminish. Finally, now that these organisations have appeared in the modern technological, political and economical climate, they tend to become disruptive and dangerous not only for democracy, in the sense that each person’s opinion ought to weigh equally, but also for society as such. Being sceptical to the sustainability of grass root organisations does however not mean that they are useless; on the contrary, through their disturbance of the social order they necessitate and hereby facilitate a re-democratisation of the world.

5.1 Individualism
It is often claimed that in the age of modernity society has become more individualised, whether this means more egocentrism and a challenge of the civic community or not can be debated. Bennett claims that the coherence of society has been affected through the modern economy, with an “increased individual interest in politics” (Bennett 1998:749). Hereby individualisation means that people question official frames (i.e. party orientation) and create their own concept of reality. If this is indeed so, one can understand how a greater amount of groups contest on the public arena with diverse world-views, using mass media as their tool of dissemination, with the help of activism. However, the notion of the individual having a possibility to choose his own reality, presupposes an open flow of (objective) information. Only if the hegemonic world-view were constantly questioned in the public debate, would there be a fare opportunity for individuals to shape their own minds. This means that the ideas of individualisation and the liberalisation of media, leading to a greater amount of world-views and a more enlightened citizenship are questionable, as it is only the strongest actors who can make their voices heard.It seems odd to say that individuals cannot shape their minds freely, at the same time as claiming that activists attempt to alter the public agenda. How then do activists shape their opinions you ask? One can only speculate regarding how activists perceive themselves, but it seems reasonable to believe that they are most often dissidents and outsiders. Due to the conformist society that mass media creates, people with altering opinions tend to become ostracized, and vice-versa, people who are ostracized tend to have deviant opinions[5]. Hereby a gap between society and activists is created, a gap that may very well be dangerous for society unless it is breached.

5.2 Media and activists
Media indeed plays a special role in regard to democracy and power, since it has to a great extent become the modern town hall. It is largely here that opinions and ideas are exchanged and created, hereby being a cornerstone of democracy. “Opinions necessitate democracy, as well as democracy necessitates opinions; these are two sides of the same coin” –Herbert Tingsten (Former Chief Editor, DN). However, if the town hall is not open for public debate, and “deviants” are not let in, it is evident that they will do their best to make their voices heard elsewhere and in other ways. Violent actions are by themselves dangerous, especially when facilitated by media, but deviant voices can be even more dangerous if there is no open debate where they can be dealt with. The best way of creating an opinion or maintaining a stance is by discussion; arguments and contra-arguments hereby refine people’s minds and thoughts.When there is no debate, radicalism and fanaticism has the best possible climate to flourish, since those who happen to hear the deviant voices are not mentally prepared to tackle them with contra-arguments. The result may very well be the contrary from what is desired by mainstream proponents, with growing opposition and extremism. Activism is hereby to a large extent created when those in power attempt to confine the public debate and discourse for their own benefit. Activism also makes this confinement more difficult and can thereby have a rejuvenating effect on democracy and the distribution of power.

6. Conclusion
Communication is the basis of activism as it conveys a message, without communication activism cannot exist; media, being the locus of communication, is hereby of prime importance when it comes to activism. Since media furthermore follows a certain logic when it comes to what to portray, it tends to (indirectly) encourage sensationalistic actions. Due to the ideology that media is embedded in, activists are however not portrayed in the manner that they would desire, and they may very well be regarded worse than before coverage. A more in-depth empirical study would hereby be desirable, as to examine how various activists are portrayed through the ruling ideology in media. To disseminate an opinion and propagate for a certain view, is obviously important for activists, but is not their only, or for that matter, most essential goal. Having the possibility to be seen on the public arena and influencing the public debate may very well be the prime object of activism as it can often alter perspectives of people.

Influencing the public debate (by sensationalistic activism) may very well be invigorating for democracy as one questions that which is taken for granted, hereby activism may indeed be seen as a possibility for various opinions and voices to meet. By challenging discourses one not only challenges the public agenda but also the distribution of power in society. In this sense activism, be it violent or peaceful, can indeed stimulate democracy. Activism however carries an inert danger due to its violent character, and the fact that deviancy and extremism, due to the lack of public debate, may grow in proportion. Altering people’s perspectives can in modern society prove to be easier than giving them an understanding for other perspectives, showing that there are other ways to perceive the world than that which is regarded as natural. Hereby people may instead be used as a levering mechanism for influence and power. In this case it would be desirable to examine the relationship between media portrayal and public opinion. A study concerning how people perceive various activists as well as the nature of the public debate could hereby be set from the perspective of the preceding analytical frame.Understanding the reason for why activism and terrorism occurs is obviously connected to history and context, but the analytical framework can tell us how society functions and dysfunctions, hereby trying to conceive of what must be done. In modern society, where media works as an ideological tool, silencing deviant voices, activism is bound to flourish. It is obvious that a free and open media, with a genuine debate, would not annihilate all discontent and terror. It is however clear that discussion and understanding between people is the cornerstone for coexistence and democracy. An open public arena must in other words be created to deal with the democratic deficiency in media and society as well as the violent character of activism.

7. List of references:
Abunimah, Ali: The U.S. media and the New Intifada. In Carey, Roane (ed): The New Intifada. Verso, London, 2001

Bennet, Lance: The Reinvention of Politics: The UnCivic Culture: Communication, Identity and the Rise of Lifestyle Politics. PS 741-61

Bourdieu, Pierre: Moteld. Brutus Östling, Stockholm, 1999

Bourdieu, Pierre: Om televisionen. Brutus Östling, Stockholm 1998

Deibert, Ronald: International Plug ‘n Play? Citizen Activism, the Internet and Global PublicPolicy. International Studies Perspectives. 2000

Dominique, Stefan: Israel I svenska media. E&D, Malmö, 1998

Friedman, Monroe: Consumer Boycotts. Effecting Change Through the Marketplace and the Media. Routledge, New York, 1999

Gerrits, Robin: Terrorists’ Perspectives: Memoirs. In Paletz, David and Schmid, Alex (eds). Terrorism and the Media. Sage, Newbury Park, 1992
Hannerz, Ulf: Reporting from Jerusalem. Cultural Anthropology 13(4):548-574. 1998

Manning, Paul: News andNews Sources. A critical Introduction. Sage, London, 2001

Nava, Mica: Consumerism Reconsidered. Buying and Power. Cultural Studies 5. 1991

Odasuo, Alali and Kenoye, Kelvin Eke: Critical Issues in Media Coverage of Terrorism. In Odasuo, Alali and Kenoye, Kelvin Eke (ed): Media Coverage of Terrorism. Sage, Newbury Park, 1991

Onwudiwe, Ihekwoaba: The Globalization of Terrorism. Ashgate, Aldershot, 2001

Paletz David: Researchers’ Perspectives. In Paletz, David and Schmid, Alex (eds). Terrorism and the Media. Sage, Newbury Park, 1992
Peretti, Jonah: My Nike Media Adventure. The Nation. 9/4/2001

Picard, Robert: Media Portrayals of Terrorism. Iowa State University, Iowa, 1993

Picard, Robert: The Journalist’s Role in Coverage of Terrorist Events. In Odasuo, Alali and Kenoye, Kelvin Eke (eds.): Media Coverage of Terrorism. Sage, Newbury Park, 1991
Ryan, Charlotte: Prime Time Activism. South End, Boston, 1991

Schmid, Alex and Graaf, Janny de: Violence as communication. Sage, London, 1982

Schulman, Mark: Control Mechanisms Inside the Media. In Mohammadi, Downing (ed). Questioning the Media. Sage, London, 1990

Wasserstrom, Jeffrey: Mass Media and Mass Actions. In Popkin, Jeremy (ed). Media and Revolution. Kentucky University, Kentucky, 1995

[1] It should however be noted that boycotts can indeed be, and often are, directed against official power, with for example the French nuclear testing in the mid-90’s. The boycotts were however directed against French enterprises as a levering mechanism, where the economical power would pressure the political.

[2] Bourdieu claims that unlike the doxsofers (many journalists, economists and other fake intellectuals), who spread opinions and ideas as truths, the role of the intellectual is to question the doxa and its tools of analysis. (Bourdieu 1999)

[3] Hannerz claims that stone-throwing was often initiated with the arrival of journalists.

[4] The recent decision from the European Union for a common definition of terrorism has launched massive criticism, since it is regarded that groups who are not perceived as terrorists in certain countries may be prosecuted. This is a typical example of how authorities can attempt to shape the public discourse.

[5] Certainly this is only half of the truth, since mainstream media and ideology may be discarded by society, and the “deviants” may in fact become the “holders of truth”. In such cases, as in former Czechoslovakia society can ostracize the “mainstream” authorities and media.