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Comunicar Journal 46: The internet of the Future (Vol. 24 - 2016)

Cyberactivism: A new form of participation for university students


M.-Guadalupe González-Lizárraga

María-Teresa Becerra-Traver

Mireya-Berenice Yanez-Díaz


The purpose of this article is to show the results derived from a sample of students who were enrolled in different bachelor degree programs offered by the University of Sonora in Mexico. There was a double objective for this study. First, to identify cyber activist students through the answers gathered through a questionnaire taken electronically using as inclusion criteria the presence of high and medium levels of participation and commitment in different actions undertaken in four topic areas (environment, academic, social and citizen issues, and human rights). As a second objective, and after selecting three unique cases of cyber activist students, inflexion points were determined in the activities performed by these youngsters in digital social networks. Using personal narrative as a methodological strategy, the students described how they interact with others through different digital networks. Among the first categories identified in the indepth interviews are: interaction history (use, access and availability of technology at a young age), and active participation about topics of interest in social networks (organization and the perceptions of achievements made). As main findings, there are the availability of these resources from a young age, personal motivation in participating in diverse topics, enjoyment of expressing one’s opinion freely, electronic participation as a way to commit to a cause, and not joining an organization while participating.


Cyber activist, cyberactivism, commitment, digital culture, university students, interaction, student participation, social networks