Mexico’s Zapatista movement was one of the first to use the internet to propel a local struggle onto an international stage. In so doing it originated a new kind of social movement, one that pushes beyond group identities around which social movements have traditionally organized and into the realm of network identity. This analysis of Zapatista websites and listservs examines the ways several key myths - of a universal Marcos, of noble savages and of a neoliberal beast - help structure the relationships among diverse members of the network. Examining the myths around which the movement is organized reveals how people go about creating network identities and helps us assess to what extent they are new and to what extent traditional roles and relationships are being played out in a new environment.
New Media & Society August 2005 vol. 7 no. 4 559-577