Multiple voices and multiple media: Co-constructing BP's crisis response

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28 Scopus citations


This article explores the impact of new Information and Communication Technology (ICT) on the field of crisis communication, and argues that the term "crisis response" needs to be re-conceptualized in order to include the polyvocality of crisis response enabled by online media. This article deconstructs the crisis response to the British Petroleum (BP) Oil Spill from organizational, media, and stakeholder perspectives. Using semantic network analysis, linguistic maps of news articles, press releases, BP Facebook posts, and stakeholder Facebook posts were created to detect the core messages of each group and to determine the roles that source and media play in creating crisis response. Findings support the idea that both source and media contribute to the overall crisis narrative, emphasizing the importance of online media in both organizational and stakeholder response. This study offers insight into the emotional contributions of stakeholder response to the overall crisis narrative, as well as, suggests a new element of dialogic communication called inter-media dialog.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)72-79
Number of pages8
JournalPublic Relations Review
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Communication
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management
  • Marketing


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