Global Sport Protest Activism Is Exclusive to the Global Elite: A Case Study of #boycottqatar2022

Tal Samuel-Azran, Tsahi Hayat, Yair Galily

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Toward better understanding the nature of sport global protest, this article examines the profiles of users of the #boycottqatar2022 (N = 111,172), a global initiative calling to boycott the 2022 World Cup on grounds of Qatar’s alleged breach of human rights. A social network analysis identified that 82% of users of the hashtag were from North America and Western Europe, that 88% of the uses of the hashtag were on Twitter (and a minority on Facebook and Instagram), and that the users’ political inclination was mostly liberal in comparison to random users. Overall, the findings indicate that the hashtag was used almost exclusively by activists from the so-called Global North on the more elitist Twitter platform, thus portraying a picture as an act of the global elite rather than a truly inclusive and overarching global initiative. We discuss further theoretical and practical implications of the findings.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAmerican Behavioral Scientist
StateAccepted/In press - 1 Jan 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • Qatar
  • World Cup
  • activism
  • protest
  • social network analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Cultural Studies
  • Education
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Social Sciences (all)


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