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Discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the role of the social media or social news sites in reporting the Arab Spring in Egypt - Essay Example

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Discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the role of the social media or social news sites in reporting the Arab Spring in Egypt Introduction The Arab Spring refers to the wave of protests, civil demonstrations, civil unrest, and disturbances which has swept various countries in the Arab region from December 2010 to the present…
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Discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the role of the social media or social news sites in reporting the Arab Spring in Egypt
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Download file to see previous pages Within the context of the social media, the Arab Spring has become a more significant phenomenon, especially as the social media has propelled the issues preceding the Arab Spring into the very forefront of both the national and the international political discussions. However, the social media has also engaged the political discussions towards a less truthful direction, one swayed by public opinions which are not necessarily based on facts or contextual discussions. These conflicts indicate that there are strengths and weaknesses relating to the impact and role of the social media or social news sites in reporting the Arab Spring in Egypt. As such, these conflicts will now be discussed in this paper. First, a discussion of the strengths will be presented, followed by its weaknesses. A conclusion will summarize and restate the important points for this discussion. Body The social media has taken on a life on its own, especially in recent years with the entry of Facebook and Twitter into the electronic fray. The easy accessibility of electronic devices as well as the affordability and widespread use of the internet has also spurred the social media phenomenon into even greater heights and greater power. The momentum of social changes has now shifted from the political leaders to the general public who have discovered their power to bring down governments, political personalities, and other influential individuals with a simple click of their mouse. On the other side of the social media spectrum is the fact that the social media has become a rabid and non-contextual social tool which has taken on a dangerous life all on its own. Inasmuch as its strengths for the purposes of public welfare have become apparent, its weaknesses also represent the fickleness of a public eager to point any finger on perceived political failures. Strengths In the case of Egypt, protests started on the 25th of January 2011 and went on for 18 days (Aday, et.al., 2012). During such time, the protesters were spurred on by encouraging posts from the social media, not just from local users, but from different parts of the globe as well. Some of these encouraging posts were seen in the Facebook page Kullena Khaled Said allowed anonymous posts about the Egypt unrest from any interested individual anywhere across the globe (Scott, 2013). At one point, the government sought to curtail the internet use in the country in order to control the protests and limit the impact of the social media (Aday, et.al., 2012). This attempt proved to be unsuccessful and eventually the protests would result to the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak who was a political power in the country for close to 30 years. In the above case, the social media was a vital cog in the Egyptian movement, and it was also further pushed further by the new generation of technology-savvy Egyptians (Chebib and Sohail, 2011). Facebook pages like “We are all Khalid Said” represented groups of individuals who were united in their cause and sentiments against the violence and oppression from the Egyptian government (Eltanwany and Wiest, 2011). These protestors were also widespread and active internet users, especially of the social media sites like Twitter and Facebook, allowing for the coordination of their activities. Facebook and Twitter helped the protesters anticipate when and ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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