New Political Actors in Europe

Across Europe, there has been rapid growth of left-wing, anti-capitalist social and political movements that criticise the establishment and use social media to organise and communicate their message. Beppe Grillo’s Five Star Movement, the Pirate Party in Germany and the Occupy movement are examples that have employed the medium to grow rapidly and create a significant political and social impact – yet often outside and invisible to mainstream politics.

Hungary has seen a proliferation of these ‘subterranean’ political movements before and after the 2010 parliamentary elections. They vary in size, ideology, form, structure and their relationship with party politics, and include a sarcastic joke party, student organisations, parliamentary political parties and a movement led by the former Prime Minister. All of these groups echo some distrust of established parties and party politics and claim to be committed to newer, participatory forms of decision making.

This report presents the results of a survey of over 4,000 Facebook fans of eight of these new opposition movements in Hungary. It includes data on who they are and what they think. It also compares these views with other similar parties in Western Europe, the Hungarian general public and supporters of Jobbik. This report is the eighth in a series of country specific briefings about the online support of populist parties across Europe.