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Hashtag Activism: Social Media and the #FreeYouth Protests in Thailand

Author: Aim Sinpeng

In: Critical Asian Studies, Vol 53, No 2, 2021, pp. 192-205

The 2020 protests were the first major pro-democracy demonstrations in Thailand mediated on Twitter. This article examines how activists used hash tags in the early phase of the movement, and argues that they developed collective narratives and spread information, rather than using Twitter to organize protests. The focus within the #FreeYouth campaign was on criticism of the government and calls for democracy, creating a 'pro-democracy collective action framework'.