The Call-Up: The Root of a Resilient and Persistent Jihadist Presence on Twitter

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This article concerns the sophisticated use of online media platforms by individuals and organizations that promote violent Islamism. According to Fisher and Prucha, the blend of extremist audiovisual media and writings helps to sanction and explain specific ideological dimensions of jihadist activity. The presence of such materials online is intended to attract fighters and fundraising, and has rapidly evolved into a subculture that cultivates and strengthens group cohesion. In examining jihadist presence on Twitter, the authors deem that such activities on this and other platforms give such groups the ability to constantly interact with the outside world and present a cohesive narrative. Case studies presented in this article show that the level of interconnectivity between core members has achieved a high degree of resilience against disruption from the suspension of individual accounts.

The Call-Up is a great primer for researchers and practitioners interested in the presence of jihadists on Twitter, the debate surrounding the suspension of jihadist Twitter accounts and potential ramifications for extremist usage of social media.

Ali Fisher and Nico Pruha

August 2014