Publication details [#62955]

Çoban, Barış and Bora Ataman. 2017. The Gezi Resistance and activist citizen reporters. Communications 42 (1) : 1–22.
Publication type
Article in journal
Publication language
Place, Publisher
De Gruyter


This paper debates how activist citizen reporters in Turkey, who began a brand-new alternative new media practice, transformed news collecting and writing activities in the process of the Gezi Park Resistance, which erupted in Istanbul in June 2013. A handful of citizens, infuriated by the police violence as well as interested in human rights from a journalistic viewpoint chose to generate their own make-shift media outlets or to become medium themselves. They collected and concurrently spread news and broadcast live on many occasions mainly via social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook and livestream, in the absence of traditional mainstream and/or alternative media. They also added to the solidarity of the resistance. In this context, the theoretical framework of this inquiry is based on concepts like alternative media, citizen media and citizen journalism. Likewise, concepts like democracy, citizen and journalism are also re-evaluated from a radical viewpoint. After theorizing ‘Çapulcu Media’, a local variant of the Rodriguez’s ‘citizen media’, constructed in the Gezi Resistance by a few activist citizen reporters, this ethnographic inquiry focuses on their activities in the field as well as the process of their identity formation based on data gathered from in-depth interviews and constant attention given to their social media accounts. Finally, this study tries to evolve a critical grasp of a radical variant of citizen journalism in the context of contemporary Occupy movements.