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Summary and Response - Coursework Example

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In the article, New Study Quantifies Use of Social Media in Arab Spring, Catherine O’Donnell reports about the findings of a study done by Philip Howard, a main researcher and associate professor in communication at the University of Washington, that indicates social media…
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Summary and Response

Download file to see previous pages... Reflecting mainly on Egypt and Tunisia, O’Donnell shows how Howard’s study indicated that social media formed online networks that organized core groups of activists to advocate for political reforms; she reports specific ways in which Howard’s study shows the opposition groups used social media to influence political debates. First, she argues that Twitter enabled people to engage in instantaneous conversations, especially during the overthrow of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. The discussions on Twitter crossed borders, and influenced the neighboring nations to converse about the political affairs in Tunisia and Egypt. As a second point, she quotes the findings that point out videos protests communicated the events of the Arab uprising to the rest of the world. Not only were the video protests important inside Egypt and Tunisia, but also Howard’s findings show the rest of the globe depended on them for updates on the uprising. For instance, twenty-three videos attracted 5.5 million views. In addition to Twitter and video protests, the instant Facebook messages and blogs inspired the revolution in Arab countries, and the attempts of the government to stop social media conversations resulted in strong activism. The opposition groups utilized blogs and Facebook to pass the information about the need for political change to many audiences. In sum, O’Donnell reports how Howard’s findings associate the social media with the Arab uprising.
O’Donnell strongly contends that the social media, especially Twitter was instrumental in facilitating communication that led to the Arab uprising. She firmly quotes Howard who indicated, “During the week before Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak’s resignation, for example, the total rate of tweets from Egypt-and around the world-about political change in that country ballooned from 2,300 a day to ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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