Listening to distant sufferers: the Kony 2012 campaign in Uganda and the international media

Mari Maasilta, Camilla Haavisto

Tutkimustuotokset: Kirjoitus lehdessä tai erikoisnumeron toimittaminenArtikkeliTieteellinenvertaisarvioitu

1 Sitaatiot (Scopus)


We use the mediated debate on the Kony 2012 campaign as a case study to explore whether and how traditional and new media practices enable sufferers of humanitarian conflicts to find a voice and to be listened to in both the local and international news media. Within the context of political voice, we emphasise political voice as a social process that involves not only speaking, but also the right to be listened to and to be engaged in conversation. The empirical material for this study consists of a selection of Ugandan newspapers and social media platforms, as well as a selection of international newspapers. Media texts related to the Kony 2012 campaign during the 2 months following the launch of the campaign were singled out and studied with the help of qualitative claims-making analysis. Our findings show that the voices of northern Ugandan victims were heard and conveyed through personal testimonies of Ugandan bloggers and via privately owned local news media. Despite Ugandan victims being temporarily listened to internationally during a short-term Kony 2012 ‘hype’, today, there is not much space for alternative reporting that would make voices of present-day victims in the Central African Republic of Congo or the Democratic Republic of Congo heard.
JulkaisuForum for Development Studies
TilaJulkaistu - 2014
OKM-julkaisutyyppiA1 Vertaisarvioitu alkuperäisartikkeli


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