Algorithmic activism

Digital culture has given birth to new forms of activism, one form of digital activism has been labeled algorithmic activism.  ‘Algorithmic activism’ contributes to spreading the message of a politician or movement, by interacting with the post in order to trigger the algorithms of the medium, so that it boosts the popularity rankings of this message and its messenger.

What is Algorithmic activism?

Within digital culture numbers matter. Popularity is a coded and quantified concept and as such it is manipulable (Van Dijck, 2013: 13) and this has  according to Maly (2018) opened up a new field of activism. According to him: 'Algorithmic activism, when intentional, presupposes that the activists not only subscribe to the message they interact with, but also understand the affordances and the algorithmic construction of the medium. Algorithmic activists use (theoretical or practical) knowledge about the relative weight certain signals have within the proceduralized choices the algorithms of the media platforms make as proxies of human judgment, in relation to the goals of the medium itself.'  (Maly, 2018)

This type of activism can be organized in many different ways. It is dependent on the different  platforms where the political battle is fought. On the knowledge and the technological competences of the activists. The mobilization power of the militants and their financial means. In its most basic organization, it consists of individual activists or militants who use one or more social media accounts.