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Hill2018footballprotestmovements.pdf

Hill2018footballprotestmovements.pdf

https://doi.org/10.1177/0038038516660040

Sociology2018, Vol. 52(4) 688 –708

© The Author(s) 2016Reprints and permissions:

sagepub.co.uk/journalsPermissions.navDOI: 10.1177/0038038516660040

journals.sagepub.com/home/soc

Against Modern Football: Mobilising Protest Movements in Social Media

Tim HillUniversity of Bath, UK

Robin CannifordUniversity of Melbourne, Australia

Peter MillwardLiverpool John Moores University, UK

AbstractRecent debates in sociology consider how Internet communications might catalyse leaderless, open-ended, affective social movements that broaden support and bypass traditional institutional channels to create change. We extend this work into the field of leisure and lifestyle politics with an empirical study of Internet-mediated protest movement, Stand Against Modern Football. We explain how social media facilitate communications that transcend longstanding rivalries, and engender shared affective frames that unite diverse groups against corporate logics. In examining grassroots organisation, communication and protest actions that span online and urban locations, we discover sustained interconnectedness with traditional social movements, political parties, the media and the corporate targets of protests. Finally, we suggest that Internet-based social movements establish stable forms of organisation and leadership at these networked intersections in order to advance instrumental programmes of change.

KeywordsCastells, consumerism, leadership, protest, social media, social movements, sport

Introduction

The impact of social media in shaping protest movements is an ongoing and polarised debate (Couldry, 2015; Jasper, 2014; Murthy, 2012). One side of this debate holds social

Corresponding author:Tim Hill, School of Management, University of Bath, BA2 7AY, UK. Email: T.R.Hill@Bath.ac.uk

660040 SOC0010.1177/0038038516660040SociologyHill et al.research-article2016

Article

Hill et al. 689

media to be the key factor in mobilising movements such as Arab Spring, Occupy, Podemos and UK Uncut (Juris, 2012; Lim, 2012). Manuel Castells (2015 [2012]: 15) has placed himself centre-stage in this argument, claiming that social media engender a ‘new species of social movement’. Unlike traditional forms of protest that require groups to regularly congregate to agree on purposes and renew shared identifications (e.g. Della Porta and Diani, 2009 [1999]; Melucci, 1996), Castells (2013 [2009], 2015 [2012]) con-siders that online platforms ‘switch on’ connections between previously unrelated groups, generating leaderless, non-hierarchical, open-ended organisations that enhance the possibility to mobilise support and forge reforms.

Nevertheless, theories that hold social media as the key to understanding contempo-rary protest movements face several criticisms. First, a lack of evidence concerning how tangible economic or social outcomes are achieved raises questions over the efficacy of so-called ‘Twitter revolutions’ (Mathers, 2014; Morozov, 2012: 12). Second, claims for new species of political and civic engagement tend to obscure how Internet movements interact with pre-existing political orders and policy-making institutions (Couldry, 2015). Third, Castells is accused of glossing over the internal work and machinations that define movements’ progress (Mathers, 2014), a criticism that necessitates improved evidence with respect to the leadership qualities and organisational processes through which Internet movements establish demands and work towards change (Lovink, 2012).1

In order to evaluate Castells’ claims and critics’ counter-claims regarding the effec-tiveness of Internet-based movements; to determine the processes through which Internet-based movements work to achieve outcomes among the wider social fabric; and to describe how social media are used in the mobilisation, organisation and leadership of protest movements, this article examines Stand Against Modern Football (StandAMF). StandAMF is a network of British football fans who protest against commercialisation processes designed to generate more manageable and profitable ways of ‘consuming’ sport. In providing an empirical account of a contemporary protest mobilisation in the context of sport culture, we are able to explain how Internet media help to transcend entrenched rivalries, coordinating broader awareness and support vis-a-vis previous movements in this context.

Ultimately, we find that StandAMF achieves success in challenging existing corporate logics. However, rather than by bypassing the institutions that have upheld these logics, as Castells (2015 [2012]) claims, we find that these achievements owe much to the estab-lishment of ongoing communicative links with mainstream media, political parties, tra-ditional social movements and the corporate bodies at which protests are directed. Furthermore, despite Castells’ claims for leaderless, non-hierarchical organisational structures, we explain that StandAMF depends on ‘soft-leaders’ (Gerbaudo, 2012) whose social capital and communicative expertise enhance network cooperation and enable the insertion of alternative goals and logics into established social, political and corporate orders.

We begin by describing Castells’ claims regarding the mobilisation and structure of contemporary social movements. Following this, we apply his analytical framework to our investigation of StandAMF to critically extend Castells’ observations and contribute to the understanding of the impact of social media on protest movements in terms of their effectiveness in delivering change.

690 Sociology 52(4)

Manuel Castells and Contemporary Social Movements

Castells (1972: 93) defines social movements as a, ‘certain type of organisation of social practices, the logic of whose development contradicts the institutionally dominant social logic’. These logics – the practical goals of institutions – are networked; that is, shared and reproduced across multiple organisational nodes as diverse as people, objects, institutions, corporations and cities. Networked logics must be programmed, or assigned, substanti-ated and distributed across networked nodes through communication structures. Although programmes are irreducible to supporting communicative structures, Castells contends that networks and the social logics that they carry may be ‘reprogrammed’ through alter-native communicative activities. Castells (2013 [2009]) explains that although power has long emerged in social logics that are programmed through state, market and ‘old’ media channels by privileged sectors of society, these enduring financial, political and media networks are increasingly open to reprogramming through ‘new media’.

Explicitly, in Communication Power (2013 [2009]) and Networks of Outrage and Hope (2015 [2012]), Castells argues that Web 2.0/3.0 technologies change how move-ments mobilise. In contrast to established, top–down modes of information dissemina-tion long used to programme entrenched network logics (Castells, 2009 [1996]), web-based channels encourage horizontal networks, ‘self-generated in content, self-directed in emission, and self-selected by many who communicate with many’ (Castells, 2013 [2009]: 70). In doing so, Castells (2013 [2009], 2015 [2012]) emphasises ‘mass self-communication’ channels – Twitter, YouTube, Instagram and blogs – which allow ‘individuals and organisations to generate their own messages and content, and to dis-tribute these in cyberspace, largely bypassing the control of corporations and bureaucra-cies’ that have traditionally channelled information (Castells, 2013 [2009]: xx).

Connections between communication and power are a constant concern for Castells. In The Information Age trilogy (2009 [1996], 2010 [1997], 2010 [1998]) he explains how digital technologies produce ‘spaces of flows’, autonomous informational spaces where alternative logics are generated to challenge the programming of longstanding network logics. Moreover, these communication orders transcend traditional time–space bounda-ries, such that spontaneous connections occur between people who share ideas rather than geographical space (Castells, 2010 [1997]). It follows also that these movements remain open-ended, defying conventional membership-based measures of participation (Castells, 2015 [2012]). Furthermore, Castells (2015 [2012]) describes how this quality of mobilisation leads to movements that are non-hierarchical and distributed, such that without central leadership they enhance participation, while also posing challenges to management and policing.

Together, these qualities lead Castells (2015 [2012]: 15) to declare the emergence of a ‘new species’ of rhizomatic social movement. Grassroots in their emergence and growth, these connect potentially unlimited networks of parties through shared emo-tions, enhancing the potential to reprogramme societal logics in manners that deliver change by ignoring political parties, not recognising any leadership and rejecting all formal organisation (2015 [2012]: 252–256).

In light of such claims, however, it remains unclear how effective these organisations are in delivering social and economic change (Mathers, 2014; Morozov, 2012). Related

Hill et al. 691

to this, it is unclear how these movements can achieve change without interacting with established social orders (Couldry, 2015), including groups that exist prior to, and hence feed into movement mobilisations, or institutions at which change is targeted (Fuchs, 2014; Mathers, 2014). Moreover, in spite of the potential of Internet communications to rapidly broaden participation, commentary and dissent (Diamond, 2010) in manners that enhance public awareness and coordinated action (Shirky, 2011), Mathers (2014) accuses Castells of glossing over much of the practical work that occurs in organising these movements. To assess to what extent rhizomatic movements can be characterised as a ‘new species’ of leaderless organisations that forge autonomous logics in cyber-space, and to meet calls to more carefully describe the organisational and leadership processes through which change is managed (Couldry, 2015; Lovink, 2012), we trace the emer-gence and development of StandAMF; a protest movement that challenges the logic of English football sustained by corporate, political and media interests.

Method

Four interconnected data-collection activities took place between December 2012 and March 2016. First, participant observation occurred at locations including match attend-ances, informal meet-ups and public events organised by and/or promoted through StandAMF (Table 1). These procedures encompassed both explicit protest actions, and backstage practices of planning and organisation (Blee, 2012; Lichterman, 1998). Concurrently, field-interviews offered points of reflection and initial themes around which depth-interviews were designed.

Second, depth-interviews were conducted with 48 fans who either self-identified with or were involved in organising StandAMF. Following Blee and Taylor (2002), interviews sought oral-history accounts of StandAMF’s formation, as well as biographical details so as to assess demographic characteristics of movement members (Table 2).2 Many partici-pants brought artefacts – for example photographs, match programmes, fanzines and tickets – which became interview prompts (Silverman, 1973).

Third, collecting social media content published by StandAMF allowed us to trace and analyse the communicative work and organisational micro-processes that order and influence the movement (Millward, 2011; Robinson and Schulz, 2009). Finally, newspa-per, radio and other social-media content – blogs, Twitter and Facebook – featuring StandAMF or objections to ‘modern football’ were purposively sampled, affording a fourth dataset that highlighted precursors and media representations of the movement, as well as policy outcomes. Throughout, we sought a balance between online and physical data collection (Murthy, 2012). Initial data analysis involved multiple readings of sources, resulting in a network of longitudinal and reflexive accounts of the events that precipitated StandAMF.

Event organisers were aware of the research. As Riach (2009: 363, emphasis in origi-nal) notes, ‘participants’ ideas of why we, as researchers, research certain subjects is […] of key importance when considering who we interview, and why they might want to be interviewed’. We did not hold insider positions in StandAMF, hence in order to answer potential questions as to our roles, Hill and Millward published a fanzine article reflect-ing on perceived commercial changes in English football through the lens of existing

692 Sociology 52(4)

Tab

le 1

. Pa

rtic

ipan

t obs

erva

tion

even

ts.

Dat

ePu

blic

eve

ntO

rgan

ised

by

Oth

er g

roup

s in

att

enda

nce

Loca

tion

24 Jan

. 201

3C

ross

-sup

port

er m

eeting

with

the

Foot

ball

Supp

orte

rs F

eder

atio

n (F

SF)

The

FSF

Spiri

t of

Sha

nkly

Man

ches

ter

31 Jan

. 201

3C

ross

-sup

port

er m

eeting

with

the

FSF

The

FSF

Stan

dAM

FC

entr

al L

ond

on

7 A

pr. 2

013

FSF

Sout

hern

Div

isio

n m

eeting

The

FSF

Kin

gsto

n, L

ond

on

24 A

pr. 2

013

FSF

Nort

h-W

est

Div

isio

n m

eeting

The

FSF

Spiri

t of

Sha

nkly

Man

ches

ter

9 M

ay 2

013

Spiri

t of

Sha

nkly

tic

ket

pric

es d

ebat

eSp

irit

of S

hank

lySt

andA

MF,

Man

ches

ter

Uni

ted

Supp

ort

ers

Tru

st, S

uppo

rter

s D

irect

Live

rpool

10 M

ay 2

013

Aga

inst

Mode

rn F

ootb

all d

ebat

eN

/ASp

irit

of S

hank

ly, S

tand

AMF,

Man

ches

ter

Uni

ted

Supp

ort

ers

Tru

st, S

uppo

rter

s D

irect

Live

rpool

16 M

ay 2

013

Tic

ket

pric

es d

ebat

eSp

irit

of S

hank

lySt

andA

MF

Cen

tral

Lond

on

13 Jun

. 201

3Fa

n cu

ltur

e di

scus

sion

Footb

all M

useu

mSp

irit

of S

hank

ly, S

tand

AMF

Man

ches

ter

17 Jun

. 201

3O

ne N

atio

n Fo

otb

all,

Shad

ow

Cab

inet

de

bate

Labo

ur P

arty

Supp

orte

rs D

irect

Cen

tral

Lond

on

19 Jun

. 201

3Pr

ote

st o

utsi

de P

rem

ier

Leag

ue &

Fo

otb

all L

eagu

e he

adqu

arte

rsN

/ASt

andA

MF,

Spi

rit o

f Sh

ankl

y, t

he F

SF, t

he

Blu

e U

nion

(Eve

rton)

, Man

ches

ter

Uni

ted

Supp

ort

ers

Tru

st

Cen

tral

Lond

on

6 Ju

l. 20

13B

OSS

Nig

ht &

Sta

ndAM

F pr

esen

t ‘S

tand

Aga

inst

Mode

rn F

ootb

all’

BO

SS &

St

andA

MF

Live

rpool

22 A

pr. 2

014

FSF

Sout

hern

Div

isio

n A

GM

The

FSF

Kin

gsto

n, L

ond

on

Note

: All

pers

ons

nam

ed h

erei

n ha

ve g

rant

ed c

ons

ent

in a

ccord

ance

with

inst

itut

iona

l eth

ical

pro

cedu

res.

Hill et al. 693T

ab

le 2

. In

terv

iew

par

tici

pant

s.

Nam

eA

geG

ende

rO

ccup

atio

nFo

otb

all c

lub

Fiel

d in

terv

iew

Dep

th-int

ervi

ewO

ther

affi

liations

Am

anda

40s

Fem

ale

Soci

al m

ove

men

t org

anis

atio

nW

est

Ham

xN

/A

Dan

30s

Mal

eEn

trep

rene

urLi

verp

ool

xx

Spiri

t of

Sha

nkly

Mar

k50

sM

ale

Art

ist

Bri

ghto

nx

Tra

de u

nions

Tom

50s

Mal

eJo

urna

list

Live

rpool

xx

N/A

Mar

k30

sM

ale

Entr

epre

neur

Live

rpool

xx

Spiri

t of

Sha

nkly

Tim

20s

Mal

eIT

tec

hnic

ian

Tott

enha

mx

N/A

Noel

50s

Mal

eN

urse

Live

rpool

xx

Spiri

t of

Sha

nkly

Ada

m20

sM

ale

Fitn

ess

Live

rpool

xx

Spiri

t of

Sha

nkly

Dav

id50

sM

ale

Arc

hite

ctT

ott

enha

mx

N/A

Bri

an60

sM

ale

Ret

ired

Live

rpool

xN

/AA

nne

60s

Fem

ale

Ret

ired

Port

smout

hx

Footb

all S

uppo

rter

s Fe

dera

tion

Gra

ham

50s

Mal

eSo

licitor

Live

rpool

xx

Spiri

t of

Sha

nkly

Chr

is20

sM

ale

Elec

tric

ian

Live

rpool

xx

Spiri

t of

Sha

nkly

Ada

m20

sM

ale

Elec

tric

ian

Live

rpool

xx

Spiri

t of

Sha

nkly

Seb

30s

Mal

eT

elev

isio

nY

eovi

lx

xN

/AB

ill30

sM

ale

Tel

evis

ion

Yeo

vil

xx

N/A

Paul

30s

Mal

eC

hem

ist

Man

ches

ter

Uni

ted

xx

Inde

pend

ent

Man

ches

ter

Uni

ted

Supp

ort

ers

Tru

stIa

n30

sM

ale

Urb

an p

lann

ing

Man

ches

ter

City

xx

N/A

Tim

40s

Mal

ePu

blic

rel

atio

nsA

rsen

alx

Red

Act

ion

(Ars

enal

Sup

port

er G

roup

)A

ntho

ny30

sM

ale

Tra

nspo

rtat

ion

Live

rpool

xSp

irit

of S

hank

lyM

icha

ela

20s

Fem

ale

N/A

Live

rpool

xx

Spiri

t of

Sha

nkly

Jam

es30

sM

ale

Tra

de u

nion

Live

rpool

xx

Spiri

t of

Sha

nkly

And

yT

eena

ger

Mal

eSt

uden

tLi

verp

ool

xx

N/A

Kei

th40

sM

ale

Lobb

yist

Wim

bled

on

xx

N/A

Ann

e60

sFe

mal

eR

etir

edW

imbl

edon

xx

N/A

694 Sociology 52(4)

Nam

eA

geG

ende

rO

ccup

atio

nFo

otb

all c

lub

Fiel

d in

terv

iew

Dep

th-int

ervi

ewO

ther

affi

liations

Joel

20s

Mal

eJo

urna

list

Live

rpool

xx

N/A

Kei

th50

sM

ale

Scie

ntis

tN

/Ax

N/A

Pete

r30

sM

ale

Publ

ishe

rSu

nder

land

xFo

otb

all S

uppo

rter

s Fe

dera

tion

Tony

70s

Mal

eR

etir

edLi

verp

ool

xx

Tra

de u

nions

Mar

k40

sM

ale

Mar

keting

Leed

sx

N/A

Pete

r50

sM

ale

Soci

al m

ove

men

t org

anis

atio

nB

rist

ol R

ove

rsx

N/A

Stev

e30

sM

ale

Hosp

ital

ity

Live

rpool

xx

Spiri

t of

Sha

nkly

Cliv

e50

sM

ale

Scie

ntis

tPo

rtsm

out

hx

N/A

Stua

rt40

sM

ale

Photo

grap

her

N/A

xN

/AJa

mes

20s

Mal

eIT

tec

hnic

ian

Ars

enal

xx

N/A

Ada

mT

eena

ger

Mal

eSt

uden

tT

ott

enha

mx

xT

ott

enha

m H

ots

pur

Supp

ort

ers’

Tru

stM

artin

30s

Mal

eM

arke

ting

Tott

enha

mx

xT

rade

uni

ons

Dun

can

40s

Mal

eT

rade

uni

on

Man

ches

ter

Uni

ted

xIn

depe

nden

t M

anch

este

r U

nite

d Su

pport

ers

Tru

stB

rian

50s

Mal

eA

rchi

tect

Tott

enha

mx

N/A

Stev

e20

sM

ale

Hosp

ital

ity

Live

rpool

xx

Spiri

t of

Sha

nkly

And

rew

20s

Mal

eR

esea

rch

stud

ent

Live

rpool

xx

Spiri

t of

Sha

nkly

Gar

eth

30s

Mal

ePu

blis

her

Live

rpool

xx

N/A

Dav

id40

sM

ale

Fina

nce

Che

lsea

xx

N/A

Tim

50s

Mal

eEc

ono

mis

tA

rsen

alx

N/A

Joe

Tee

nage

rM

ale

Stud

ent

Live

rpool

xSp

irit

of S

hank

lyM

ike

30s

Mal

eSo

cial

move

men

t org

anis

atio

nSu

nder

land

xx

N/A

Cra

ig30

sM

ale

IT t

echn

icia

nLe

ices

ter

City

xx

N/A

Dav

id20

sM

ale

Jour

nalis

tC

ove

ntry

City

xU

nite

Aga

inst

Fas

cism

Note

: In

such

inst

ance

s w

here

indi

vidu

als

are

nam

ed o

r qu

ote

d, v

erba

l ‘in

form

ed c

ons

ent’ h

as b

een

gran

ted.

Tab

le 2

. (C

ont

inue

d)

Hill et al. 695

sociological research. An effect of this overt research position is that the reflexivity of both researchers and participants can collaboratively develop (Mauthner and Doucet, 2003), influencing data collection and ultimately the narrative we present.

Specifically, participants augmented our sampling of media sources, suggested inter-view opportunities and facilitated an, ‘iterative coding strategy that moved between lev-els of narrative focused on the thematic content and on the reflexive considerations of [participants]’ (Riach, 2009: 365). In particular participants guided our access to the broader groups and influences that constitute StandAMF, eventually disclosing an inter-connected network of parties that spanned online and urban spaces. This insight became a core aspect of our analysis, guiding our recording of the distributed micro-processes of StandAMF, and enabling a critical examination of Castells’ claims regarding the role of social media in contemporary protest mobilisations. It is to this examination that we turn next, beginning with the background against which protesters are making a stand.

Programming ‘Modern Football’

Contemporary debates about – and protests over – modern football should be contextual-ised within the history of English football. Attendances in England had fallen since the 1940s, leading Taylor (1984) to describe football as a sport in ‘recession’. Additionally, during the 1970s and 1980s, football became synonymous with violence – such that in May 1985, the Sunday Times declared it to be a ‘slum game played in slum stadiums watched by slum people’ (Goldblatt, 2007: 542). Fast forward to August 1992, and in the wake of the disorder associated with the English game, legal, economic and commercial interventions materialised that would change the way football was organised and consumed.

Riding a wave of enthusiasm following England’s fourth place in the 1990 World Cup, the ‘FA Premiership’ was formed. In Castells’ (2013 [2009]: 47) terms, this repre-sented a ‘reprogramming’ of the goals assigned to the network of interested parties that regulate English football. In particular, the FA’s Blueprint for the Future of Football recommended a free-market logic designed to solve social and financial problems asso-ciated with the game, declaring how, ‘High standards of behaviour, on and off the field’ (Football Association, 1991: 6) could be fostered by marketing techniques designed to shift the core social class of crowds from ‘C1, C2 and D to A, B and C1’.

Castells (2013 [2009]: 45) explains that programming is accomplished by ‘switchers’ who ‘connect and ensure the cooperation of different networks’ by communicating shared goals and resources. In the wider society, Castells (2013 [2009]: 429) declares Rupert Murdoch to be ‘the most deliberate switcher’, because of his capacity to link cultural, political and financial networks through his media empire. Indeed, Murdoch’s control of BSkyB switched together Premier League, ‘Sky Sports’ broadcasting and clubs as marketing partners. Club directors became key ‘programmers’, building clubs as brands, asserting new practices of ‘customer care’ and transforming club ownership from a ‘philanthropic hobby into an investment opportunity’ (King, 1997b: 227–228). Finally, the new logic was communicated to football fans with advertisements promising the dawn of a ‘Whole New Ball Game’.3

In 2012, the Premier League celebrated its 20th anniversary having carried football into a period of growing match attendances, lucrative transnational broadcast deals4 and

696 Sociology 52(4)

reduced violence. Nevertheless, many fans were dissatisfied. Exploring football fanzines from the late 1980s through to 2010, Millward (2011) discovers common frames of dis-content: clubs prioritising commercial development ahead of on-the-pitch performances; a ‘sanitisation’ of match atmospheres; rising ticket prices that disrupt connections between ‘traditional’ fans and clubs; irregular kick-off times; the heavy regulation of ‘traditional’ fan practices; and finally, connected to all of these, the growing influence of television broadcasters – especially BskyB – on football (see also King, 1997a). Despite this, fanzine consumption remained constrained within the club-specific reach of these media (Millward, 2011), precluding wider ‘shared awareness’ that can spark collective action (Shirky, 2011: 36).

Mobilising in the Space of Flows

In the summer of 2012, however, on fashion-label Casual Connoisseur’s web-forum, a discussion about the ‘re-branding’ of Cardiff City sparked a broader debate over – in the words of one participant Brighton and Hove Albion fan Romeo Benetti – ‘how abjectly shit modern football in Britain is’.5 A variety of similar conversations emerged in other web-forums: when asked what constituted ‘modern football’ in another football-fashion blog, Yeovil Town supporter Seb White summarised:

A game where fans are priced out from attending, where the young generation can neither afford or are able to get tickets, where people that do turn up receive over-the-top regulation from police and stewards, where owners act with complete disregard of supporters’ views.6

To channel his and others’ discontent, White joined Stockport County follower Mark Smith, and Liverpool fan Daniel Sandison to publish a fanzine that might motivate sup-port from fans who shared anger at the corporate logic guiding football and those who ‘act without any sense of history, tradition or knowledge of football culture’ (Seb White, field interview, January 2013). In large part, StandAMF members establish this motiva-tion by comparing the current programme with nostalgic recollections of more ‘tradi-tional’ football culture:

Football used to be this local event that everyone had access to if they wanted to be part of it. Everyone knew one another […] There was this sense of camaraderie and togetherness that no longer really exists […] Money has had a huge impact on this […] Truth is many working, ordinary people – not just teenagers – don’t get to go the match anymore because of the prices. (Tom, interview, 29 June 2013)

Although nostalgically venerating the camaraderie, ease of access and cheaper prices of the past, StandAMF members are clear that they do not favour the pre-Premier League programme that was at times associated with racism and homophobia (Back et al., 1999). Rather, men and women have gathered around the StandAMF movement, constituted by 15,700 Twitter followers, 6000 Facebook followers and those who attend protest events. Among attendees are trade unionists, and members of anti-racist, anti-Fascist and anti-homophobic groups (see Table 2). As such, a heterogeneous network established from

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diverse pre-existing fan groups begins to define StandAMF against previous ordering influences in English football, circumscribed as they were by club-specific interests and orders (King, 2002 [1998]; Nash, 2001).

Like the social movements Castells (2015 [2012]) describes, StandAMF began to gather support from diverse cultural flows. These include the continental European ‘Ultra’ movement, fanatical young fans distinguished by their animosity towards corpo-rate influences (Doidge, 2015). Further links were established with disparate club protest groups such as Liverpool FC’s Spirit of Shankly (SOS) supporter union; multiple football fanzines; and football supporter unions, the Football Supporters Federation (FSF) and Supporters Direct. Less clearly related, but equally important are cultural influences from early 1990s electronic music and recreational drug scenes (see Gilman, 1994), and the British football ‘casual’ fashion scene (see Redhead, 1991). Helping to generate a more inclusive and textured football culture since the 1990s (King, 1997a), these inter-secting cultural flows support multiple web-forums that steer clear of club rivalries.

Indeed, these forums engendered new opportunities for socialisation among fans from a variety of clubs, a ‘space of flows’ where ongoing discussions over dissatisfac-tion spread. Digital technologies also enabled StandAMF to provide their own plat-form for fans to deliberate over crises across the football leagues, and to share their anger towards club directors, owners, the police and media bosses, all of whom are considered to sustain the programme of modern football. In particular, the creation of a StandAMF Twitter account alerted early members that they had coined a phrase that might unite fans. As White reflects, ‘within 24 hours of opening a Twitter account [StandAMF] had over a thousand followers; we knew we were onto something’ (inter-view, 13 February 2013).

Unity: From Ideology to Affect

Castells (2013 [2009]) calls this work of unification, ‘switching’. For StandAMF, the possibility of switching relies on the ‘horizontal’ affordances of social media applica-tions that bypass traditional ‘top–down’ media communications, allowing countervailing ideas to circulate independent of established media programmes (Castells, 2015 [2012]; Murthy, 2012). Employed in the cultural industries – TV production, design, fashion and journalism – the StandAMF editors who accomplish this work are competent in exploit-ing the informational capital (Castells, 2010 [1998]) of media to unite disparate net-worked parties. Given the varied origins and members of the movement, plus the assortment of complaints these groups express as effects of ‘modern football’, however, switchers must take care to translate across these diverse nodes.

Castells (2015 [2012]) suggests this is often achieved by transcending single issues and identities that might define a movement. Fanzine co-editor Bill Biss has confirmed this ideal publicly:

we’re not about one thing in particular, rather, StandAMF is attempting to give a voice to all those who’ve had enough with the various ills of the modern game. I also see it as a vehicle to protest, to moan, to debate, and to exchange ideas about what we can all do as fans to influence or change the future of football. (The Pro Lounge,7 2013)

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It follows that in contrast to social movement organisations with strict hierarchies, start-ing principles and well-defined goals, often materialised in constitutional documents (Zald and Ash, 1966), StandAMF retains an open-endedness, exhibiting fluid goals, strategies and structures, and eschewing firm principles of concern that remain common to many contemporary social movements (Martin, 2015).

Indeed, despite attempts to constitutionalise StandAMF,8 the movement has eschewed official ideological statements or manifestos. How then are the voices of multiple groups with divergent meanings, concerns and engagements linked without firm principles of identity that have often been key to social movements? In answer to this question, Castells (2015 [2012]) cites the power of shared affect. Castells (2015 [2012]: 137) argues that rhizomatic social movements mobilise new members through emotional ‘contagion’. By framing collective action through affective unity, rhizomatic movements remain open to emerging controversies, and to new groups that wish to join the movement, while steering clear of potential ideological disagreements that might result in such cases.

Illustrating these possibilities is Keith who describes StandAMF as, ‘a mood; it has no direction, which is a good thing in this case. Anyone from any club across the country can connect to it and use it in their own way’ (interview, 16 May 2013). Keith suggests that StandAMF’s fluid identity helps the movement to bring diverse supporters together in a manner that can transfer broadly, and allow groups who become associated to respond to crises as they see fit. StandAMF’s fanzine and web presence are also seen to channel affect by spreading hope. Liverpool fan, Anthony, considers that StandAMF pro-duces a ‘feeling of hope that the way football is being run at the moment can be changed. It shows that people out there regardless of team, club, league – whatever – are just as annoyed and angry’ (interview, 17 February 2014). Like the discussions that occur on topics unrelated to club identities considered above, this Internet-based sharing of emo-tions also helps to overcome entrenched rivalries.

From Web Space to Urban Space

Enhancing the unifying potential of horizontal communications to channel fans’ affect, however, StandAMF also brings people together in urban space, enabling members to experience emotions collectively, and materialise protest. Castells (2013 [2009]: xxxix) asserts that although critical and reflexive work takes place in the space of flows afforded by the Internet, these emergent networks ‘are not identified as movements until they occupy urban space’, especially symbolic buildings. It is through the combination of urban space, personal proximity and the circulation of collective emotions that groups create ‘spaces of autonomy’; fluid and distributed practices of mobilisation that span online and urban locations (Castells, 2015 [2012]: 222). Spaces of autonomy generate and harbour the multiple concerns of newly united groups within the movement, and help to overcome trepidation, maintain enthusiasm and produce hope in ways that begin to make protests concrete.

StandAMF follows this blueprint. Beyond the publication of the StandAMF fanzine and social media presence, a number of urban events – including meetings, two protest marches and post-march social events – took place between May 2013 and August 2014. These events were organised by or associated with StandAMF, and included attendees

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from clubs whose fans would not normally associate. Opening speeches and speakers from the floor aroused collective anger at the effects of ‘modern football’. As supporters from rival clubs came together to listen, discuss and share their anger, these events became, as one participant put it, ‘tipping points’ for further collective action. For instance, James McKenna, chair of Liverpool FC supporters’ Spirit of Shankly (SOS) protest group, declared that collaborations between StandAMF and other supporter organisations, ‘mark the coming together of fans in the realisation of what unites us as supporters is greater than what divides us’ (fieldnotes, 9 May 2013).

This statement stands in contrast to Nash’s (2001: 52) account of Kevin Miles’ (now Chief Executive of the FSF) description of Newcastle United supporters’ responses to the possibility of working with other supporters 12 years earlier: ‘I am not interested in meeting fucking Mackems [Sunderland fans] or Mancs [Manchester United], all I am interested in is Newcastle fans.’ Rather, McKenna calls for a dismantling of longstanding programmes of rivalry by ‘switching on’ new connections between these groups. The following day in Liverpool city centre McKenna again used a meeting entitled ‘Against Modern Football debate’ to call for unity:

All of us can sit in the room and find reasons why we can’t be mates with one another and why we can’t actually work together. We sat here last night, and Man United fans, Everton fans, Tranmere fans and Crewe fans sat here and said ‘Yeah, it’s about time we actually do something together’ like in Germany. As Kev Rye from Supporters Direct said last night, the thing that unites all of us is much greater than what divides us in those ninety minutes. (Fieldnotes, 10 May 2013)

These meetings also reflected on the achievements of associated nodes of this move-ment, such as the successes of German fan movements that have given supporters more control over club governance; the efforts of SOS (Millward, 2012); and the institutionali-sation of groups such as Supporters Direct, which was set up by a collective including Labour MP Andy Burnham (who initially chaired the group) to support fan-based owner-ship of sports clubs. These reflections expressed that a reprogramming of football could take place if fans were able to transcend their rivalries and act collectively. Next, we explore an instance of this trend towards supporter unity during a protest mobilised by StandAMF at which traditional social movement organisations as well as the media helped to materialise support for the movement.

Materialising Rhizomatic Protests

An outcome of successive social media discussions, and subsequent urban meetings was the first cross-club protest against rising ticket prices in English football. On 19 June 2013, the same day the Premier League and Football League announced its match fix-tures for the 2013/2014 season, the StandAMF march took place. Liverpool’s SOS, StandAMF and the FSF combined to organise and promote the event. Four hundred sup-porters from diverse clubs – many of them arch rivals – marched together from London’s Regent’s Park to the Premier League and Football League’s headquarters at Gloucester Place. Fieldnotes from the day read as follows:

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The plan is to meet at the Boating Lake in Regent’s Park at 1 pm. From Twitter, however, I discover that everyone is meeting beforehand for a drink at The Globe […] At around 12:15 pm, the walls outside The Globe are adorned with banners from Liverpool and Arsenal as groups of fans mix and chat. [SOS Committee Member] Ste Martin and I move to Regent’s Park […] to get ready for everyone meeting at 1 pm […] Supporters from a range of clubs – Sunderland, Manchester City, Crewe Alexandra, Sheffield Wednesday, Manchester United (who have travelled on the Liverpool coach!), Crystal Palace, Everton, Dulwich Hamlet, as well as representatives of StandAMF and the FSF are in attendance […] Young Spurs fans provide disparaging songs about Sky Sports as their film crew appear, and a number of beach balls are being knocked about through the burgeoning crowd. By 1:45 pm I count 300 people […] The protest snakes through the tight paths and quaint bridges of Regent’s Park and onto Baker Street. Smokebombs are set off, and pockets of people start chants. It is difficult to keep the protest and chanting together as the crowd elongates because the protest must remain on the paths – a point made clear to us numerous times by police officers who have been present throughout the day. When we hit Baker Street though, people sprawl out onto the road, and the protest gains a new density. At this point, chants are generally led by Ste Martin, who, with a megaphone and a hi-vis jacket (adorned with ‘Don’t Buy the Sun’ on the back), orchestrates the protest. As a result, the chants become louder, more sustained and coordinated […] The group leading the march with the ‘Football without Fans Is Nothing’ banner stop, bringing the protest together, providing an opportunity for the national media to take photos. The march stops where the Premier League and Football League are housed, 30 Gloucester Place. The aim is to occupy the spaces outside the offices and, owing to Kevin Miles’ connections to the institution, for select members of the protest to be invited in to talk with Richard Scudamore and other officials. The protest, at the point where we reach 30 Gloucester Place, is meant to move into a pen across the road, but does not […] the two policemen are now on their radios, calling for support. They urgently ask those individuals in hi-vis jackets to get everyone into the pen, a demand met with shrugged shoulders and responses such as, ‘we don’t have the power to control what other people do and we’re not leading this’.

Organised across online social media discussions and urban events – the spaces of auton-omy (Castells, 2015 [2012]) – this rhizomatic diversity of previously unconnected and oppositional groups became more ‘real’ in the ‘occupied’ and highly symbolic location of 30 Gloucester Place. Castells (2015 [2012]) contends that occupying space helps solidify and strengthen rhizomatic social movements for two reasons. First, being physically together enhances collective emotional experiences. Second, protests in symbolic urban spaces materialise discontent in ways that are difficult to ignore by established program-mers. For example, Figure 1 shows the defacement of the Premier League headquarters, a key institution in the programme of ‘modern football’. Note the marks of multiple groups in attendance, all of which unify under the ‘Against Modern Football’ slogan.

Moreover, owing to the diverse groups mobilised by StandAMF, print and television media deemed the protest newsworthy. One Daily Mirror columnist focused on the diversity of those who planned to attend:

What is really impressive about this […] protest is the level of organisation, with meetings being held in London and Liverpool, and a range of rival fans taking part. On Wednesday members of Liverpool’s Spirit of Shankly union will walk side by side with the Manchester United Supporters Trust and Everton’s Blue Union. Arsenal Supporters Trust and Tottenham

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Hotspur Supporters Trust will share banners along with fans of lower league clubs like Yeovil and Tranmere. (Reade, 2013)

Equally, the Guardian portrayed protestors as victims, describing the ‘intense frustra-tion’ felt by, ‘gas fitters from Liverpool’, and lamenting how ‘dads won’t be able to take to their kids to the game anymore’ (Gibson, 2013). Gaining mainstream media attention can be key to advancing movement causes (Gamson, 2004; Jasper, 2014), and is to be considered a useful outcome in its own right. In the present case, these media representations framed and legitimised protestors as victims of the Premier League’s greed, and helped to publicise StandAMF’s countervailing aims for broader audiences. Nevertheless, Mathers (2014: 1064) criticises Castells for valuing the ‘expressive above the instrumental’ in terms of evaluating outcomes, hence our next task is to con-sider the more instrumental impacts that StandAMF works towards in reforming the logic of modern football.

Reprogramming Modern Football?

Although measuring the outcomes of social movements is difficult (Giugni, 1998; Martin, 2015), StandAMF’s successes begin with the dismantling of entrenched sup-porter rivalries. Beyond this, the movement achieves measures of success listed by Gamson (1990), namely the ability to gain mainstream media attention in manners that shift public opinion, and the achievement of legitimacy among policy-building institu-tions. In terms of more instrumental gains, the Premier League recognised the legitimacy of the protest by establishing dialogue with the movement. Subsequent media reports disclose that while the Premier League considered ticket prices a matter for individual clubs, the institution was nevertheless ‘sympathetic’ (Gibson, 2013). Indeed, the Premier

Figure 1. Premier League and Football League plaque outside 30 Gloucester Place covered in stickers (photograph taken by Author A).

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League reacted by providing £12 million over three years to improve away fans’ experi-ences of attending games (BBC, 2013).

Despite these gains, however, many supporters remained unconvinced that this reform should signal the end of demands. At a North-West (England) FSF branch meeting in April 2014, for instance, one floor-speaker suggested that £12 m was too thin a slice of broadcast contracts worth £5.5 bn for the 2013–2015 seasons (fieldnotes, 3 April 2014) and would afford negligible savings for each travelling fan over a season. Conversations continued in social media. In May 2014, Dave Kelly from Everton FC’s ‘Blue Union’ fan-group directed an enthusiastic tweet at the FSF: ‘Time for the annual visit to the Premier League, £20s plenty. Any update?’, accompanying this text with a photograph from the 2013 protest.

Accordingly, on 14 August 2014 a return to Gloucester Place occurred, this time under the FSF banner. Founded to enact a ‘singular voice for football fans’, the FSF represents 180,000 members within a national council and local/divisional represent-atives. Andrew (interview, 28 September 2014), however, described the FSF protest as:

lacklustre compared to last year, more organised and formal […] Not to lay blame, but the FSF put a dampener on things as they took ownership of it. Rather than being dispersed and a bit more accessible where lots of supporters could join in and connect to it, this one felt a lot more hierarchical in that fans felt like they had to support the FSF and the way they want to do things […] What was great about last year’s efforts was that it was completely surprising that some fans from some clubs showed up […] And that was probably down to last year’s StandAMF push […] the way they were able to bring people together without requiring these really formal ways of organising […] That youthful, cross-club energy is now totally lacking.

In 2013 the FSF had acted as one part of a broader, horizontal movement, mobilising resources such as access to leaders within the Premier League for the benefit of StandAMF. In 2014, however, having assumed overall responsibility and leadership, the progress of the same cause was centralised in line with the more formalised organisation of the FSF. On the one hand, marching under a single representative banner led support-ers like Andrew to complain at the lack of energy and cross-club accessibility compared to the previous year, a point arguably justified by the reduced attendance. Yet, if the 2014 protest felt ‘lacklustre’, it nevertheless established continued media attention (see BBC, 2014), and helped ensure that ticket prices – now a single-issue frame that StandAMF supported – remained a prescient frame of debate for politicians, football clubs and the Premier League.

Indeed, when stories emerged reporting the 2014/2015 Premier League overseas and domestic broadcasting rights amounted to £8.3bn (Harris, 2016), StandAMF’s case strengthened further, with commentators arguing that the Premier League must share financial gains given that supporters are a key part of the broadcasting spectacle (Rumsby, 2016). Ultimately, this frame became a key point of action when in February 2016 Liverpool Football Club announced that ticket prices would rise again. In response, sup-porter groups arranged a new protest on Twitter – #WalkOutOn77. Two days later, live television broadcasted the spectacle of between 10,000 and 15,000 supporters leaving during the second half of play.

Hill et al. 703

This event attracted further media attention and speculation, with commentators tout-ing the possibility of nationwide ‘copycat’ walkouts. In the following weeks, ticket prices churned around daily news cycles (e.g. Sheen, 2016), and filtered into parliamen-tary debate. During Prime Minister’s Questions, Clive Efford – who StandAMF had pre-viously connected with to advise on policy-based reform of football – elicited agreement from David Cameron who regarded it a problem that ‘some clubs put up prices very rapidly every year, even though so much of the money for football comes through spon-sorship, equipment and other sources’ (Hansard, 2016).

A week later, Liverpool FC’s owners had apologised, freezing 2015/2016 prices. Moreover, the Premier League agreed to cap away-game tickets at £30 until 2019. These instances suggest that Internet-based movements are able to achieve meaningful changes against the corporate logics they challenge, yet, pace Castells (2015 [2012]), these organ-isations are, when necessary, able to settle on singular points of concern. We now explain how our findings contribute to understanding the impact of social media in protest move-ment organisation and leadership, as well as how Internet-based social movements may interact with institutions that sustain the logics that they seek to alter.

Conclusion: A New Species of Social Movement?

Castells (1972: 93) defines social movements as organisations that carry logics that con-tradict institutionally dominant logics. In the wake of widening social media participa-tion, Castells (2015 [2012]) considers movements to mobilise through unity established during open flows of information and shared affective responses that take place in social media. These principles help us to understand the emergence of StandAMF: Internet platforms afford horizontal, many-to-many communications that bypass longstanding rivalries sustained by traditional media and clubs (King, 2002 [1998]; Millward, 2011). Instead, shared cultural interests, such as conversations relating to fashion and music, help overcome differences ‘constructed in people’s minds through communication pro-cesses’ (Castells, 2013 [2009]: xix), opening a space of autonomous dialogue and cri-tique where fans share anger at what begins to distil into the frame of ‘modern football’.

Our case also illustrates that the refusal to settle on singular ideological claims within these deliberative platforms offers a further unifying force for these networked coali-tions. Without firm identities, hierarchical leadership or constitutionalised goals, multi-ple groups feel able to connect to StandAMF. Together, these features challenge the necessity of collective ideological protest identities conventionally seen as generating effective social movements (e.g. Della Porta and Diani, 2009 [1999]; Melucci, 1996); so too do they partly justify Castells’ (2015 [2012]: 15) claim for a new species of social movement. Nevertheless, although social media facilitate ‘ad hoc synchronisations’ (Shirky, 2011: 36) of previously unconnected groups into decentralised networks of ‘autonomous nodes’ (Castells, 2015 [2012]: 111), Castells (2015 [2012]) is unclear on how change is possible vis-a-vis organisations that constitute the broader ‘social fabric’ (Couldry, 2015; Mathers, 2014).

Our work clarifies this problem, showing that StandAMF fosters alliances with main-stream media, and political parties in order to spread its countervailing logics. Thus

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where Castells (2015 [2012]) considers rhizomatic protests to become ‘more real’ in public space, as with the London protests, we move further to suggest that this materiali-sation process extends to the reproduction of StandAMF’s branded slogans and images that provide a ‘grip’ in the media (Murthy, 2012). This might affect the opportunity structure for change by raising public awareness, political sympathy and ultimately legit-imation from groups against which protests develop, namely clubs and the Premier League, both of which have made concessions to protestors.

In exploring these instances, however, we challenge the notion that these movements ‘do not need a formal leadership, command and control centre’ (Castells, 2015 [2012]: 249) and question Castells’ assertions that affective ‘contagion’ is responsible for spread-ing interest in movements (2015 [2012]: 252). Specifically, we discover instances at which ‘soft-leaders’ (Gerbaudo, 2012) fulfil various communicative functions. Though these roles are not formalised, fanzine editors and Internet-forum administrators organise and facilitate the web spaces in which diverse fan groups can unite, as well as discus-sions, urban protests and negotiations with target institutions. These competencies are vital, since achieving media traction is far from guaranteed for social movements (Lovink, 2012).

With this point in mind, we extend knowledge of soft leadership by suggesting that the individuals who emerge in these roles are those who exhibit social and informational capital necessary to carry out the work of uniting groups within the movement itself, and communicating with stakeholders beyond the movement. Embodying this ‘informational capital’ (Castells, 2010 [1998]) for instance, are StandAMF members Bill Biss and Seb White. As ex-fanzine editors, their experiences afford the design of protest frames that gain traction across social media and mainstream media. Equally, Kevin Miles, as leader of FSF, was able to exploit his social capital to establish negotiations with the Premier League.

The presence of soft leaders does not invalidate Castells’ (2015 [2012]) claims that movements with no centre are powerful by virtue of their being hard to manage, police or co-opt. We suggest, however, that it is enough for rhizomatic movements to appear leaderless. Where police sought to engage apparent leaders of the 2013 protest for crowd-management purposes, those individuals maintained that their control was limited. We observe a powerful duplicity in this incident: with no apparent centre, or formal leader-ship, it is difficult to manage or co-opt the movement, or predict where subsequent pro-tests will occur, who will be involved or what issues they might tackle.

Despite the decentralised character of these rhizomatic movements, however, we sug-gest that central organisational nodes remain as latent potentials, a point that demands more detailed consideration than Castells offers (see Couldry, 2015; Fuchs, 2014). As Andrews (1997) suggests, extended investigations of protest movements can deliver important insights. In observing StandAMF for three years, we are able to witness points at which the movement dwells in the horizontal spaces of social media, and contrasting instances at which specific individuals and groups come forward to communicate par-ticular protest frames and focus on singular goals with key programming organisations.

The roles played by the FSF exemplify this. In the 2013 protest, this organisation functioned as one node among many, willing to share resources within the wider network that StandAMF helped to switch together. In 2014, however, this older-style social

Hill et al. 705

movement brings its more formal leadership structure, manifesto and organisational methods to the fore. Some protesters consider that this thwarts work done by StandAMF in deconstructing rivalries. Nevertheless, as much as horizontal spaces of social media are beneficial in uniting previously isolated fans, and encouraging deliberation among these diverse groups, the FSF’s sustained focus on price as a more singular and instru-mental outcome helps the overall movement to reprogramme one specific aspect of the corporate logic against which StandAMF’s members count among their other concerns.

Finally, we note that groups such as StandAMF may be more common than previously recognised. Beyond the protests targeting macro-political structures and institutions of late capitalism, to which Castells (2013 [2009], 2015 [2012]) attends, our data illustrate that these kinds of rhizomatic coalitions are also challenging corporate logics by targeting smaller-scale market institutions in the context of sport, consumption and lifestyle poli-tics. Extending research that explores mainstream sociological issues through sport cul-tures (e.g. Back et al., 1999; Dashper, 2012; Dolan and Connolly, 2014; Woodward, 2004), this finding affirms that the formation and progress of contemporary Internet-based protest movements is of continuing interest to general sociology, and warrants further research to clarify these intersections of politics, media and consumption, as well as fur-ther digital-sociological studies of the folding together of online and urban realities.

Acknowledgements

The authors extend thanks to the editorial and review team, Greg Martin, Dino Numerato, Kat Riach and David Webber.

Funding

This research received no specific grant from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

Notes

1. In the second edition to Networks of Outrage and Hope, Castells (2015 [2012]: 17) concedes that it remains unclear as to how Internet-age protest movements actually deliver change.

2. We cannot claim to have gathered a complete or ‘representative’ sample, given that the nature of StandAMF proved to be open-ended, hence defying quantification through traditional cen-sus-type participation measures (Castells, 2015 [2012]).

3. See https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MEAIyH_gDSk.4. Between the 1992/1993 and 2011/2012 seasons, average attendance grew from 21,126 to

35,931 (Millward, 2011) and annual rights that BSkyB paid to broadcast matches grew from £38.3m to >£1bn (paid by a combination of BSkyB and co-broadcasters, BT Sport).

5. See http://www.newstatesman.com/cultural-capital/2012/12/against-modern-football.6. Umbro blog, 2013. See http://www.umbro.com/en-gb/blog/behind-the-scenes-what-is-stand-

against-modern-football-all-about/.7. Another blog intended to afford cross-club discussions of ‘a wide range of footballing inter-

ests’. Available at: http://plfa.co.uk/the-stand-against-modern-football-campaign-interview-with-bill-biss.

8. The Manifesto and editorial preface can be found at Reed (2013), available at: http://www.standamf.com/2013/07/23/time-for-a-manifesto-for-football/.

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Tim Hill is Lecturer in Marketing at the University of Bath. His research examines issues of organi-sation and management within English football culture. He is currently working on a project that explores the uses and consequences of wearable technology within organisations.

Robin Canniford is co-director of the Cluster for the Study of Organisation, Society and Markets (COSM), at the University of Melbourne Australia. His research examines entanglements of sub-jects, communities and material environments, with a particular emphasis on the role of market institutions and marketing professionals within these systems. He is the co-editor of Assembling Consumption (Routledge, 2015).

Peter Millward is Reader in Sociology at Liverpool John Moores University. He has published widely including articles in the British Journal of Sociology, Sociology, Current Sociology and The Sociological Review. His research interests are in: (a) the sociology of sport; (b) social movements, mobilisations and collective action; and (c) critical understandings of relational sociology. He is particularly interested in the overlaps between these areas of enquiry. He is author of The Global Football League (Palgrave, 2011) and is currently working on his third monograph, Collective Action and Football Fandom (Palgrave Macmillan), co-authored with Dr Jamie Cleland, Dr Mark Doidge and Dr Paul Widdop and is contracted to Palgrave Macmillan.

Date submitted September 2015Date accepted June 2016

How it Works

  1. Clіck оn the “Place оrder tab at the tоp menu оr “Order Nоw” іcоn at the bоttоm, and a new page wіll appear wіth an оrder fоrm tо be fіlled.
  2. Fіll іn yоur paper’s іnfоrmatіоn and clіck “PRІCE CALCULATІОN” at the bоttоm tо calculate yоur оrder prіce.
  3. Fіll іn yоur paper’s academіc level, deadlіne and the requіred number оf pages frоm the drоp-dоwn menus.
  4. Clіck “FІNAL STEP” tо enter yоur regіstratіоn detaіls and get an accоunt wіth us fоr recоrd keepіng.
  5. Clіck оn “PRОCEED TО CHECKОUT” at the bоttоm оf the page.
  6. Frоm there, the payment sectіоns wіll shоw, fоllоw the guіded payment prоcess, and yоur оrder wіll be avaіlable fоr оur wrіtіng team tо wоrk оn іt.

Nоte, оnce lоgged іntо yоur accоunt; yоu can clіck оn the “Pendіng” buttоn at the left sіdebar tо navіgate, make changes, make payments, add іnstructіоns оr uplоad fіles fоr the оrder created. e.g., оnce lоgged іn, clіck оn “Pendіng” and a “pay” оptіоn wіll appear оn the far rіght оf the оrder yоu created, clіck оn pay then clіck оn the “Checkоut” оptіоn at the next page that appears, and yоu wіll be able tо cоmplete the payment.

Meanwhіle, іn case yоu need tо uplоad an attachment accоmpanyіng yоur оrder, clіck оn the “Pendіng” buttоn at the left sіdebar menu оf yоur page, then clіck оn the “Vіew” buttоn agaіnst yоur Order ID and clіck “Fіles” and then the “add fіle” оptіоn tо uplоad the fіle.

Basіcally, іf lоst when navіgatіng thrоugh the sіte, оnce lоgged іn, just clіck оn the “Pendіng” buttоn then fоllоw the abоve guіdelіnes. оtherwіse, cоntact suppоrt thrоugh оur chat at the bоttоm rіght cоrner

NB

Payment Prоcess

By clіckіng ‘PRОCEED TО CHECKОUT’ yоu wіll be lоgged іn tо yоur accоunt autоmatіcally where yоu can vіew yоur оrder detaіls. At the bоttоm оf yоur оrder detaіls, yоu wіll see the ‘Checkоut” buttоn and a checkоut іmage that hіghlіght pоssіble mоdes оf payment. Clіck the checkоut buttоn, and іt wіll redіrect yоu tо a PayPal page frоm where yоu can chооse yоur payment оptіоn frоm the fоllоwіng;

  1. Pay wіth my PayPal accоunt‘– select thіs оptіоn іf yоu have a PayPal accоunt.
  2. Pay wіth a debіt оr credіt card’ or ‘Guest Checkout’ – select thіs оptіоn tо pay usіng yоur debіt оr credіt card іf yоu dоn’t have a PayPal accоunt.
  3. Dо nоt fоrget tо make payment sо that the оrder can be vіsіble tо оur experts/tutоrs/wrіters.

Regards,

Custоmer Suppоrt

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