“Workers United Will Never Be Defeated:” The Communicative Constitution of BAmazon on Twitter
Type of DegreeMaster's Thesis
Communication and Journalism
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A unionizing effort that has gained attention in recent years is that of Amazon warehouse workers organizing in Bessemer, AL, known as BAmazon. Using a qualitative content analysis of 100 tweets, this study investigates how BAmazon communicates unionization, and how BAmazon constitutes itself as an organization through Twitter. After using the 3C Method of context, class, and community (Schradie, 2021) and the Four Flows Model in the communicative constitution of organizations (CCO) perspective (McPhee & Zaug, 2009) to qualitatively code the data, themes of solidarity (between BAmazon members, and between BAmazon and the greater labor movement), tensions of power distribution (inequities and power-claiming), and action were uncovered. In combining the 3C Method and the Four Flows, new perspectives in the Four Flows are presented through highlighting strategies used by BAmazon in digital spaces, including persuasive tactics of calling individuals to action, power-claiming, and exposing powerful and corrupt organizations. Practical findings present further strategies for organizers to use Twitter, such as using pop culture references, sharing workers’ experiences, and building organizational legitimacy through establishing and announcing networks of support.