Although one might assume that information and communication technologies (ICTs) have been a key component for mobilizing recent social protests in Latin America, Lupien (political science, Brock Univ., Canada) discovers otherwise. In a study of how local Indigenous activists in Ecuador, Bolivia, and Chile have adapted to a globalized world, he ascertains that the use of social media comes with trade-offs. This should come as no great surprise. Humans, after all, are ultimately social creatures, and, historically, the success of political mobilizations has been a consequence of an ability to build on those connections. As Lupien ably demonstrates through the case studies in this book, technology comes with trade-offs and mixed results. Sometimes it hinders rather than facilities the achievement of social movement objectives. At best, social media and other forms of technology complement and support rather than replace long-standing collective action strategies that have proved to be very effective. ICTs comprise just one aspect of successful mobilization tactics that ultimately remain largely offline where people live their flesh-and-blood realities. That observation is the key and logical takeaway from this book.
Summing Up: Recommended. Graduate students.