Social Media and the Arab Spring with Focus on the Egyptian Revolution

Javeriya Perwaiz

Student thesis: Master thesis

Abstract

Executive Summary: The purpose of conducting research on social media in relation to the Egyptian revolution in 2011, is to get a comprehensive understanding of the political interaction that is shaped by the affordances of social media use. The focus on affordances leads to the possibility of understanding how an actor proceeds with actions depending upon the circumstances in the environment and accessibility to certain objects. The importance of social media needs to be investigated in Egypt, as it is a country that has suffered from lack of freedom of speech online. “Technology shapes a society” (Cumunello & Anzera, 2012, 458). Regardless, whether social media was essential as the direct trigger of the beginning of the uprisings in Egypt; it is important to recognize that technology influences society in terms of other factors, such as people gaining knowledge and becoming more informed. Although, one cannot guarantee that the quality of the information and knowledge is fully accurate or sufficient. Information and knowledge sharing is essential for this research, after all social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook’s main functionality is the flow of information among different user accounts. The mobilization of social media has lead to political engagement, in terms of opportunities of political interaction taking place online. This consequently creates new opportunities arising on social media and debates on political relations, whilst simultaneously allowing the users to have the ability to become the center of attention in their own network and being listened to. Determining what role social media should play is up to the individual, it depends on how they will approach the different web sites and whether they are able to make full use of the capabilities that social media has to offer. Furthermore, based on theoretical approaches and frameworks, it has been possible to look into different aspects of social media interaction’s and its influence on society.

EducationsMSc in Business Administration and Information Systems, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
LanguageEnglish
Publication date2014
Number of pages85