By drawing from the theory of consumer citizenship, collective activism, and consumer boycotts, this article strives to understand the nature of the current calls for consumer resistance and the following consumers’ actions that resulted from the Russian invasion of Ukraine. In particular, by utilizing Friedman’s (1991) taxonomy of boycotts, we aimed to identify the character, motives, and tools of ongoing boycotts and thus estimated their actual and probable effectiveness. The main research questions in this paper concern what type of consumer boycotts we currently observe, what the aims and motives are of current boycotting, and whether the noticed boycotting attempts will result in the prospected ends. The seriousness of ethical abuses, their range, and the rising sense of a global war risk also lead us to the question if current boycotts’ participants disclose the features of strongly reciprocal consumers (Hahn & Albert, 2017). To meet our goals, we utilized both secondary and primary data sources. First, we reviewed the literature concerning anticonsumption, consumer activism, political consumerism, and consumer boycotts. As focusing on the case of Polish consumers, we also overviewed research reports and press articles addressing and commenting on the current consumer behavior trends. To gather the primary data, we used a qualitative research method, namely netnography. We analyzed content posted by the members of Polish-speaking Facebook groups constituted around the issues of boycotting. The results of our study prove that current boycotts cross the border of media ones and achieve the form of market boycotts. Consumers participating in boycotts use both communicational (like unfavorable comments posted on social media of boycotted brands) and real actions (like protesting in front of boycotting shops). Also, the data indicated that the most significant triggers of boycotting behavior displayed by Polish consumers are moral outrage and a sense of compassion. When it comes to identifying the possibility of achieving a durable change for the sake of creating a more sustainable civil society, our results deliver cautious optimism. Although both the circumstances and the features of individuals engaged in the current boycotts depict that they are strong reciprocators, judging the ultimate consequences of consumer aroused activity and, consequently, the boycotts’ efficacy needs a longer time.
"Consumer Boycotts in the Time of War Crisis: An Efficient Citizenship Strategy or a Temporary Spurt of Solidarity,"
Journal of Vincentian Social Action: Vol. 6:
2, Article 10.
Available at: https://scholar.stjohns.edu/jovsa/vol6/iss2/10
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