Volume 15, Issue 5
  • ISSN 1569-2159
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9862
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Public opinion not only influences the likelihood of success for a protest movement; images of public opinion can also be used to legitimize or delegitimize a protest. In contemporary societies, opinion polling is the most authoritative way to “measure” public opinion. Yet the meanings of poll findings need to be interpreted and are often contested. Following these premises, this article analyzes the construction of images of public opinion through polling during the Umbrella Movement. The analysis illustrates the discursive strategies involved in selective reporting of opinion polls by newspapers with different political stances. It also demonstrates how poll results were articulated with other assumptions, principles, and discourses to generate claims about the legitimacy or proper strategies of the movement. On the whole, the analysis shows how public opinion, as a discursive category, was brought to bear on the dynamics of the Umbrella Movement through polling and its communication.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): newspaper discourses; opinion polling; Public opinion; selectivity; Umbrella Movement
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