The term ‘boycott’ originated in Ireland when the people of Ballinrobe, County Mayo, began a protest against Charles Cunningham Boycott, a British ex-soldier who became a land owner in Ireland.

The people of Ballinrobe were angered because of his background, stature, and more importantly, his refusal to reduce rents, so they refused to harvest his crops, serve him in shops or provide any services of any description.

He wrote to the British Press to highlight his trouble and began to import people from England to harvest his crops, but this was a costly enterprise and eventually he took the hint and gave up before returning to England. The boycott was deemed a success and a very effective and powerful means of peaceful protest/resistance was born.