Journal of Legal, Ethical and Regulatory Issues (Print ISSN: 1544-0036; Online ISSN: 1544-0044)


Digital Solidarity Movement of Non-state Actors against Authoritarianism: Milk Tea Alliance of Hong Kong and Thailand

Author(s): Sopolnawitch A. Ponglamjiak

This paper is a study of the recent online social media of Thailand and Hong Kong with their resistance against their authoritarian states. Both of the two countries have faced similar political repression from their states which generates political coalitions of non-state actors. The help of social media platforms that are easily accessible to people from all walks of life, allows these non-state actors to grow stronger in numbers and propel their protest forward. Both of these movements from two different states moreover have shown support for each other through social media and formed the movement called the Milk tea alliance which received a lot of attention in the press. The primary objective of this article is to introduce a significant and arising online transnational alliance challenging existing authoritarian states by taking a closer look at two different movements of non-state actors and to give a detailed account of how the coalition came about and what are their shared goals. Furthermore, this paper explores how social media has opened new horizons and given a meaning-making space for non-state actors to create their own narrative and eventually brought them more opportunities for the fight for democracy in their countries. Excerpts of different accounts, studies, and reports from online news sites, statements of both states actors and other individuals, and academic articles in various disciplines are gathered and analyzed as supporting sources of this paper. In addition, this paper will explore the power of these nation-states and their reactions to these online movements that were formed by their people.

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