Affiliation: Hussman School of Journalism and Media
Much of the scholarship on the media strategies of social movement organizations (SMOs) has focused on how these organizations frame issues. More recently, scholars have written about the strategies of digitally native, online advocacy organizations like MoveOn.org. There is a lack of research, however, on how long-standing organizations adapt to new media environments in response to political threats. Planned Parenthood Federation of America's implementation of tactics like the Planned Parenthood Truth Tour and other strategies suggest that older SMOs are attempting, via new media, to take advantage of enthusiasm and interest from publics as they arise. This thesis reveals ways in which existing SMOs prep for and subsequently leverage moments of political contention. It also shows how a long-standing organization that advocates for abortion rights utilizes new media in its political strategy, thus extending previous literature on abortion politics and providing normative guidelines for practitioners involved in similar contentious moments.