The Online–Offline Hybrid Model of a Collaborative Solidarity Action: Migrant Solidarity Grassroots Groups in Hungary
Chapter from the book: Travlou P. & Ciolfi L. 2022. Ethnographies of Collaborative Economies across Europe: Understanding Sharing and Caring.
The migrant and refugee crisis that culminated in 2015–2016 brought about a number of new phenomena and lessons for Europe. Hungary also experienced an intense, albeit relatively short period of the crisis in 2015 as a transit country, but the impact of this period goes beyond its duration. One remarkable new phenomenon of the migration crisis was the emergence of a volunteer grassroots solidarity movement that operated large-scale aid activities by using a hybrid online–offline model. The volunteers formed and maintained their grassroots groups online, via Facebook, to organize their daily activities, logistics and fundraising in order to provide an effective on-site, offline aid activity for migrants and refugees. The spontaneous solidarity movement emerged from nowhere provides an example of how activity through social media platforms interacts with offline humanitarian aid activity in the framework of a ‘go online to act offline’ model and how the relationship is transformed by the proliferation of the online activity.