In 2015, meeting in Paris for the Conference of the Parties (COP21), representatives of 195 nations set an ambitious goal to reach net zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by mid-century. This research uses the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, which took place in Paris during 30 November to 11 December 2015, as a case study of Twitter coverage of the talks by mainstream and alternative media outlets and other climate stakeholders, including activists and fossil fuel industry groups. It compares the British Guardian with other media and climate stakeholders’ visual framing of climate change on Twitter during COP21, because the publication had launched an advocacy campaign in March 2015 promoting fossil fuel divestment in the lead-up to COP21. Findings show that individual activists and movement organizations functioned similarly in climate change visual framing in Twitter posts, as did individual and organizational multinational representatives and scientific experts. The news media categories varied by type of news organization. The major outliers were the fossil fuel industry and trade association accounts. Industry stakeholders largely focused on former US President Barack Obama’s climate policy, promoting the perception of a lack of domestic support for his climate policies in their visual Twitter postings.
As usual, I welcome any questions or feedback about my research!
This article explores similarities and differences between Internet- mediated climate change advocacy organizations and their legacy counterparts. It relies on a content analysis of advocacy emails produced by Environmental Defense Fund, Natural Resources Defense Council, Sierra Club, Greenpeace USA, League of Conservation Voters, Climate Reality Project, 1Sky, and 350.org. The study finds differences and similarities in strategic Internet use, including greater emphasis by climate groups on high threshold, offline actions; greater emphasis by legacy groups on low threshold, online actions; and high reliance by both framings that demand accountability from political elites. Implications for Internet-mediated and climate advocacy are discussed.
The article draws on a data set of emails compiled by David Karpf, to whom I’m thankful for granting me access to them. As usual I welcome comments and questions about this research.
After my appearance on Texas Public Radio’s The Source to discuss net neutrality, I appeared in two more local San Antonio media outlets to discuss the issue. First, I appeared in the KENS 5 morning news on December 11 to talk about the implications of the FCC’s net neutrality vote for San Antonio consumers. Here’s the video:
Then on the day of the vote, December 14, I appeared on Univision’s nightly local broadcast to talk about the consequences of the vote for consumers, especially Hispanics. The divisiveness engendered by the FCC’s decision to strike down net neutrality is sure to generate more political activity around the issue in the near future.