Egypt – New Weapons of the People

Facebook and Twitter were both blocked by the Egyptian government this week. Interesting isn’t it? It’s an age old fight: frustrated citizens, fed up with corruption and the blatant excesses by their government, finally showing their anger in street protests. The Egyptians, like their Tunisian counterparts (and many people all round the globe), are at the end of their tether. They want change.

Protests in the Information Age

From what I’ve read, the protesters used social networking sites to organise themselves. Rally cries were sent all over Egypt (and the world) via Facebook and Twitter, forcing the government to block the sites. What the hell makes Egyptian authorities think they can suppress information in the information age?

Facebook and Twitter can still be accessed in Egypt through outside web proxies, so it is unlikely that the block will stop the protesters.

Government Response to Protesters

It’s clear that most governments (think of Iran and Tunisia) don’t have a response to 21st century technology. When will governments learn that information can’t be stifled? People will always find a way.

Methinks the only way to quell protesters is to actually start working honestly. Start working according to the mandate your people gave you. Uplift your country, alleviate poverty. Being a government official or president is not your God given right. We put you in that position and we can damn well see that you’re fired if you don’t perform! That should be your response to protests from your people – not blocking their right to their freedom of expression.

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