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Analyzing video records of collective action



Abstract: We have extended our method developed for on-site systematic observation & recording of collective action (McPhail & Schweingruber, 1999; Schweingruber & McPhail, 1999) to the coding of videotape records from three sources: the Vanderbilt Television News Archives, the videotape archives of a large metropolitan police force, & investigator produced videotapes. The method samples the videotape record for several categories of actors (demonstrators, police, onlooker-passersby, media workers, & counterdemonstrators) & for incidents of collective action by two or more actors in each category. The method estimates the number of visible individuals in each actor category in each sample shot & then estimates the proportion of those visible actors judged to engage in one or more of forty-plus elementary forms of collective (facing, voicing, manipulating, locomoting) actions. After describing the criteria & procedures for our method, we report the results of coding three protest events representing, respectively, the aforementioned three sources of videotape records; the annual March for Life in Washington, DC (1973-1998), the 1991 Poll Tax Riot in London, & a 1995 Kurdish PKK protest event in Bern, Switzerland, recorded by the first author. We briefly summarize our analyses of those three events & discuss the advantages & limitations of the three types of video records & of the criteria & procedures of our method.

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Publication Year:2000
Type of Material:Article
Language English
Publisher:American Sociological Association
Subject: Vanderbilt Television News Archive -- Research Use
Record Number:10140
Last Update:2023-09-11 11:16:11
Date Created:0000-00-00 00:00:00