Luis Bouza e-mail(Login required) , Álvaro Oleart e-mail(Login required) , Jorge Tuñón e-mail(Login required)

Main Article Content


Luis Bouza e-mail(Login required)
Álvaro Oleart e-mail(Login required)
Jorge Tuñón e-mail(Login required)


Since the argumentative turn in EU studies, research has shown that civil society activists can challenge frames promoted by EU institutions and incumbent groups, and influence public opinion in the EU. However, most studies of civil society mobilisation on EU issues have focused on the vertical framing of issues from Brussels to national capitals, rarely analysing mobilisation beyond Brussels. This article builds upon ongoing research on Spanish civil society activism on the TTIP (Bouza & Oleart, 2018) and framing EU issues on Twitter (Bouza & Tuñón, 2018), contributing to the study of the role of national activists in the horizontal translation of EU-wide mobilisation to national publics. We argue that national actors play an influential role in the discursive struggle to define ‘Europe’ and the EU in the (national) public spheres (Díez Medrano, 2003). Building on our previous analysis of national activism on TTIP in Spain, we analyse whether activists have engaged in a process of frame bridging (Snow et al., 1986), in order to expand the mobilisation against TTIP towards new issues and constituencies relating to the broader trade strategy of the EU. The present research addresses the role of the Spanish anti- TTIP social movement in the emergence, circulation and bridging of critical frames on the TTIP negotiations in the Spanish Twitter sphere. The article combines quantitative and qualitative methods –network analysis and framing analysis– in order to analyse the role of the @NoAlTTIP network in the building and diffusion of frames challenging the EU institutions discourse on trade in the Spanish context.


Social Movements, Framing, social media, Twitter, TTIP, European Union, #NoAlTTIP


Alonso-Muñoz, L., Miquel-Segarra, S. & Casero-Ripollés, A. (2016). Un potencial comunicativo desaprovechado. Twitter como mecanismo generador de diálogo en campaña electoral. Obra Digital, 11, 39-58. Retrieved from https://repositori/

Aruguete, N. (2017). The agenda setting hypothesis in the new media environment. Comunicación y Sociedad, 28, 35-58. Retrieved from

Ausserhofer, J. & Maireder, A. (2013). National Politics on Twitter: Structures and Topics of a Networked Public Sphere. Information, Communication & Society, 16(3), 291–314.

Barisione, M. & Ceron A. (2017). A Digital Movement of Opinion? Contesting Austerity Through Social Media. In M. Barisione & A. Michailidou (Eds.), Social Media and European Politics (pp. 77-104). London: Palgrave Macmillan.

Barisione, M. & Michailidou, A. (Eds.) (2017). Social Media and European Politics: Rethinking Power and Legitimacy in the Digital Era. Houndmills: Palgrave Macmillan.

Benford, R. D. & Snow, D. A. (2000) Framing processes and social movements: An overview and assessment. Annual review of sociology, 26(1), 611-639.

Bentivegna, S. (2015). A colpi di Tweet: la politica in prima persona. Bolonia: Il Mulino.

Bimber, B. (2014). Digital Media in the Obama campaign of 2008 and 2012: Adaptation to the personalized political communication environment. Journal of Information, Technology & Politics, 11(2), 130-150.

Blumler, J. & Kavanagh, D. (1999). The Third Age of political communication: Influences and Features. Political Communication, 16(3), 209-230.

Bouza, L. & Oleart, A. (2018). From the 2005 Constitution’s ‘Permissive Consensus’ to TTIP’s ‘Empowering Dissensus’: The EU as a Playing Field for Spanish Civil Society. Journal of Contemporary European Research, 14(2), 87-104.

Bouza, L. & Tuñón, J. (2018). Personalización, distribución, impacto y recepción en Twitter del discurso de Macron ante el Parlamento Europeo el 17/04/18. El profesional de la información, 27(6), 1239-1247.

Bruns A. & Enli G. (2018). The Norwegian Twittersphere, Nordicom, 39, 1-20.

Caiani, M. & Guerra, S. (Eds.) (2017). Euroscepticism, Democracy and the Media: Communicating Europe, Contesting Europe. Houndmills: Palgrave Macmillan.

Campos-Domínguez, E. (2017). Twitter y la comunicación política. El profesional de la información, 26(5), 785-793.

Canel, M.-J. & Sanders, K. (2012). Government Communication: An emerging field in Political Communication Research. In H. Semetko & M. Scammell (Ed.), Political Communication. London: SAGE.

Casero-Ripollés, A. (2015). Estrategias y prácticas comunicativas del activismo político en las redes sociales en España. Historia y comunicación social, 20(2), 533-548.

Casero-Ripollés, A. (2018). Research on political information and social media: Key points and challenges for the future. El profesional de la información, 27(5), 964-974.

Chadwick, A. (2013). The hybrid media system. Politics and power. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Chaudhry, I. (2014). #Hashtags for change: Can Twitter promote social progress in Saudi Arabia? International Journal of Communication, 8, 943-961.

Coger, K. (2006). Public Relations Research at the Crossroads. Journal of Public Relations Research, 18(2), 177-190.

De-Wilde, P., Michailidou, A. & Trenz, H.-J. (2015). Converging on Euroscepticism: Online polity contestation during European Parliament elections. European Journal of Political Research, 53(4), 766-783.

Díez Medrano, J. (2003). Framing Europe. Attitudes to European Integration in Germany, Spain, and the United Kingdom. Princeton/Oxford: Princeton University Press.

Duggan, M. (2015). Mobile messaging and social media 2015. Pew Research Centre. Retrieved from

Entman, R. M. (1993). Framing: Toward clarification of a fractured paradigm. Journal of Communication, 43(4), 51-58.

Entman, R. M., Matthes, J. & Pellicano, L. (2009). Nature, sources, and effects of news framing. In K. Wahl-Jorgensen & T. Hanitzsch (Eds.) (2009). The handbook of journalism studies (pp. 175-190). London: Routledge.

Eom, Y-H., Puliga, M., Smailović, J., Mozetič, I. & Caldarelli, G. (2015). Twitter-Based Analysis of the Dynamics of Collective Attention to Political Parties. PLOS ONE, 10(7), 1-17.

Fielding, N., Lee, R. & Blank, G. (Eds.) (2008). The Handbook of Online Research Methods. London: SAGE.

Fligstein, N. & McAdam, D. (2012). A theory of Fields. New York: Oxford University Press.

Fuchs, C. (2014). Social media and the public sphere. TripleC, 12(1), 57-101. Retrieved from

Gainous, J. & Wagner, K. (2014). Tweeting to power: The social media revolution in American politics. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Gamson, W. & Modigliani, A. (1989). Media Discourse and Public Opinion on Nuclear Power: A Constructionist Approach. American Journal of Sociology, 95(1), 1-37.

Goffman, E. (1974). Frame Analysis. Boston: Northeastern University Press.

Graham, T., Jackson, D. & Broersma, M. (2014). New platform, old habits? Candidate´s use of Twitter during the 2010 British and Dutch general elections campaigns. New Media and Society, 18(5), 765-783.

Hänska M. & Bauchowitz S. (2018). #ThisIsACoup: The Emergence of an AntiAusterity Hashtag across Europe’s Twittersphere. In L. Basu, S. Schifferes & S. Knowles (Eds.), The Media and Austerity: Comparative Perspectives (pp. 248-260). London: Routledge.

Hine, C. (2004). Etnografía Virtual. Barcelona: UOC.

Hine, C. (2005). Virtual Methods: Issues in Social Research on the Internet. Oxford: Berg Publishers.

Jackson, N. & Lilleker, D. (2011). Microblogging, constituency service and impression management: UK MPs and the use of Twitter. The Journal of Legislative Studies, 17(1), 86- 105.

Jivkova-Semova, D., Requeijo-Rey, P. & Padilla-Castillo, G. (2017). Usos y tendencias de Twitter en la campaña a elecciones generales españolas del 20D de 2015: hashtags que fueron trending topic. El profesional de la información, 26(5), 824-837.

Jones S. (1998). Doing Internet Research. Critical Issues and methods for examining the net. London: SAGE.

Jost, J. T., Barberá, P., Bonneau, R., Langer, M., Metzger, M., Nagler, J., Sterling, J. & Tucker, J. A. (2018). How social media facilitates political protest: Information, motivation, and social networks. Political Psychology, 39, 85-118.

Karamichas, J. (2007). Key Issues in the Study of New and Alternative Social Movements in Spain: The Left, Identity and Globalizing Processes. South European Society and Politics, 12(3), 273–293.

Karlsen, R. & Enjolras, B. (2016). Styles of social media campaigning and influence in a hybrid political communication system: Linking candidate survey data with Twitter data. International Journal of Press/Politics, 21(3), 338-357.

Kreiss, D. (2016). Seizing the moment: The presidential campaigns’ use of Twitter during the 2012 electoral cycle. New Media & Society, 18(8), 1473–1490.

Kozinets, R. (2009). Netnography: Doing Ethnographic Research Online. London: SAGE.

Larsson, A. & Kalsnes, B. (2014). Of course we are on Facebook: Use and non-use of social media among Swedish and Norwegian politicians. European Journal of Communication, 29(6), 653–667.

Liebert, U. (2011). Exit, Voice or Loyalty? The New Politics of European Civil Society. In U. Liebert & H-J. Trenz (Eds), The New Politics of European Civil Society (pp. 95-122). London; New York: Routledge.

López-García, G. (2016). New vs ‘old’ leaderships: the campaign of Spanish general elections 2015 on Twitter. Comunicación y Sociedad, 29(3), 149-168.

López-Meri, A. (2016). Twitter-retórica para captar votos en campaña electoral. El caso de las elecciones de Cataluña de 2015. Comunicación y hombre, 12, 97-118.

López-Meri, A., Marcos-García, S. & Casero-Ripollés, A. (2017). What do politicians do on Twitter? Functions and communication strategies in the Spanish electoral campaign of 2016. El profesional de la información, 26(5), 795-804.

Maireder, A. & Schlögl, S. (2014). 24 Hours of #Outcry: The Networked Publics of a Socio- Political Debate. European Journal of Communication, 29(6), 687-702.

Markhan, A. & Baym, N. (2008): Internet Inquiry: Conversations about Method. London: SAGE.

Meraz, S. (2011). Using time series analysis to measure intermedia agenda-setting influence in traditional media and political blog networks. Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly, 88(1), 176-194.

Oleart, A. & Bouza, L. (2018). Democracy at Stake: Multipositional Actors and Politicization in the EU Civil Society Field. Journal of Common Market Studies, 56(4), 870-887.

Pan, Z. & Kosicki, G. M. (1993). Framing analysis: An approach to news discourse. Political Communication, 10(1), 55-75.

Pan, Z. & Kosicki, G. M. (2005). Framing and understanding of citizenship. In S. Dunwoody, L. B. Becker, D. M. McLeod & G. M. Kosicki (Eds.), The evolution of key mass communication concepts: Honoring Jack M. McLeod (pp. 165-204). New York: Hampton Press.

Papacharissi, Z. & Oliveira, M. F. (2012). Affective news and networked publics: The rhythms of news storytelling on #Egypt. Journal of Communication, 62(2), 266-282.

Papagianneas, S. (2017). Rebranding Europe. Fundamentals for leadership communication. Brussels: ASP editions.

Parmelee, J. & Bichard, S. (2012). Politics and the Twitter revolution. How tweets influence the relationship between political leaders and the public. Lanham, MD. Lexington Books.

Peña-López, I., Congosto, M. & Aragón, P. (2014). Spanish Indignados and the evolution of the 15M movement on Twitter: towards networked para-institutions. Journal of Spanish Cultural Studies, 15(1-2), 189-216.

Pérez-Curiel, C. & García-Gordillo, M. (2018). Política de influencia y tendencia fake en Twitter. Efectos postelectorales (21D) en el marco del Procés en Cataluña. El profesional de la información, 27(5), 1030-1040.

Pérez Orozco, A. (2018). Oleada de tratados contra la vida: no son los impactos, es el sistema. El Salto Diario, 14. Retrieved from

Poloni-Staudinger, L. (2008). The Domestic Opportunity Structure and Supranational Activity: An explanation of environmental group activity at the European Union Level. European Union Politics, 9(4), 531-558.

Poynter, R. (2010). The Handbook of Online and Social Media Research. Sussex: Wiley.

Popping, R. (2017). Online tools for content analysis. In N. Fielding, R. Lee & G. Blank (Eds.), The SAGE Handbook of Online Research Methods. London: SAGE.

Rahimi, B. (2011). The agonistic social media: Cyberspace in the formation of dissent and consolidation of state power in postelection Iran. Communication Review, 14(3), 158-178.

Rodríguez-Andrés, R. & Ureña-Uceda, D. (2011). Diez razones para el uso de Twitter como herramienta de comunicación política y electoral. Comunicación y Pluralismo, 10, 89-115.

Ruiz-Soler, J. (2018). The Last Will Be the First. A Study of European Issue Publics on Twitter. Partecipazione e conflitto, 11(2), 423-447.

Sampedro, V. & Martínez-Avidad, M. (2018). The digital public sphere: An alternative and counterhegemonic space? The case of Spain. International Journal of Communication, 12, 23-44.

Scherpereel, J., Wohlgemuth, J. & Schmelzinger, M. (2016). The adoption and use of Twitter as a re- presentational tool among members of the European Parliament. European Politics and Society, 18(2), 111-127.

Siles-Brügge, G. & De Ville, F. (2015). TTIP: The Truth about the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. Cambridge: Polity.

Sloan, L. & Quan-Haase, A. (2017). Introduction to the Handbook of Social Media Research Methods: Goals, Challenges and Innovations. In L. Sloan & A. Quan-Haase, Social Media Research Methods. London: SAGE.

Snow, D. A., Rochford Jr., E. B. Burke, Worden, S. K. & Benford, R. D. (1986). Frame Alignment Processes, Micromobilization, and Movement Participation. American Sociological Review, 51(4), 464-481.

Spitulnik Vidali, D. & Peterson, M. (2012). Ethnography as Theory and Method in the Study of Political Communication. In H. Semetko & M. Scammell, The SAGE Handbook of Political Communication. London: SAGE.

Statham, P. (2008). Making Europe news: How journalists view their role and media performance. Journalism, 9(4), 398-422.

Steward, B. (2017). Twitter as method: Using Twitter as a tool to conduct research. In H. Semetko & M. Scammell, The SAGE Handbook of Political Communication. London: SAGE.

Theocharis, Y., Lowe, W., Van Deth, J. W. & García-Albacete, G. (2015). Using Twitter to mobilize protest action: Online mobilization patterns and action repertoires in the Occupy Wall Street, Indignados, and Aganaktismenoi movements. Information, Communication and Society, 18(2), 202-220.

Tuñón, J. (2017). Comunicación Internacional. Información y desinformación global en el siglo XXI. Madrid: Fragua.

Van-Aelst, P., Sheafer, T. & Stanyer, J. (2012). The personalization of mediated political communication: A review of concepts, operationalizations and key findings. Journalism, 13(2), 1-18.

Veerger, M., Hermans, L. & Sams, S. (2013). Online social networks and micro-blogging in political campaigning: The exploration of a new campaign tool and a new campaign style. Party Politics, 7(3), 477-501.

Wallsten, K. (2007). Agenda setting and the blogosphere: An analysis of the relationship between mainstream media and political blogs. Review of Policy Research, 24(6), 567-587.


Search GoogleScholar


Article Details

Special Issue: Activism, Communication and Social Change in the Digital Age