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New Media and the Arab Spring
 

New Media and the Arab Spring

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Broad outline of Arab Spring dynamics and discourses, and how social media has played a role in mobilization.

Broad outline of Arab Spring dynamics and discourses, and how social media has played a role in mobilization.

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    New Media and the Arab Spring New Media and the Arab Spring Presentation Transcript

    • New Media and the Arab Spring Alexander Hanna Department of Sociology October 4, 2011
    • AgendaNarrative of the Arab SpringFocusing on EgyptNew MediaWhats next?
    • Narrative of the Arab Spring
    • The Spark Tunisia   Mohamed Bouazizi  Sidi Bouzid  Ben Ali #sidibouzid
    • The Fuel Egypt  Khaled Said  Police Day
    • The Blaze... Libya  Bahrain Syria  … (Morocco, Algeria?) Yemen
    • Focusing on Egypt  January 25  http://www.youtube.com/w  January 28 and internet  blackout  Sustained occupation  of Tahrir and other  squares
    • New Media in Arab Spring Starting from Tunisia, mass attention paid in  Twitterverse  Not only from US and abroad, but also from other  Arab countries  Different roles of the medium (will get to in a  second...)  Includes Arab­centric media ecology  Al­Jazeera, Al­Arabiyya
    • Social Graph of @ifirka (Sami ben Gharbia) [source: giladlotan.com]
    • A Big Ado About Social Media Malcolm Gladwell –  Small Change Jay Rosen – the generic  Twitter Cannot  Topple Dictators  article Is the ado about...  nothing?
    • Not if but how Zeynep Tufekci: There has been a false debate.  Was it social media or the people? Was it social  media or the labor movements? Was it social  media or anti­imperialist movement? Was it  social media or youth? These questions are  wrong and the answer is yes. The correct  question is how.
    • But how exactly? Citizen journalism  Internal and External Consensus Mobilization Action Mobilization
    • Citizen Journalism Internal  Egypts restrictive  media ecology External  International  solidarity  Forcing IR  community to pay  attention
    • Citizen Journalism In a dictatorship, independent journalism by  default becomes a form of activism, and the  spread of information is essentially an act of  agitation.
    • Consensus Mobilization Described by Bert Klandermans  Attempts to actively mobilize consensus in a  population Ideological work Frame alignment (Snow et al. 1986) Priming for action
    • Action Mobilization Other side of consensus – getting people to act Coordination and solving of traditional collective  action problems
    • What happened in Egypt? Initial sense based on interview fieldwork this  summer Coordination on January 25  Mutual assurance of protesting Post­Jan 25: citizen journalism Less consensus mobilization  Dont have to convince people that Mubarak is  terrible
    • Bottom line on social media Like everything,  depends on context  Media ecology  Access  Politics Contributes to specific  processes
    • Whats Next? Regime­building Still fighting in Syria, Yemen, et al. Social medias role in the future of Egypt?  Differing opinions: mobilization different from  building institutions
    • Thanks! ahanna@ssc.wisc.edu http://alex­hanna.com http://twitter.com/alexhanna