For fans of digital diplomacy, it's been a great few weeks. For those like Malcolm Gladwell that rubbished the power of social media as recently as October, it must have been a little frustrating to watch protests erupt in Tunisia, Egypt, Sudan, Bahrain, Yemen, Algeria, Iran and elsewhere. As the satirical news organisation, The Onion, put it (h/t The Dish):
Panicked Malcolm Gladwell Realizes Latest Theory Foretells End Of His Popularity
Here are a few of the articles I liked reading:
- Andrew Sullivan pulls off the gloves and rubbishes Malcolm Gladwell's rubbishing of social media. My version in ISN comes out later this month. Zeynep Tufekci offers another critique here.
- Two interesting attempts to map Twitter during the Egyptian revolution (see video below).
- How the Egyptian Government turned off the internet and how Google side-stepped it.
- The State Department, which already has a cadre of staff who have embraced Twitter, started an Arabic and Farsi feed, adding to its existing team of full-time Arabic, Farsi and Urdu bloggers.
- Revolting in style — for Che t-shirt wearers, time to update your wardrobe.
- Closer to home, I couldn't help noticing that Australia's aid agency, AusAID, has one-upped its Foreign Ministry counterparts by putting social media front and centre of its website.
Follow Fergus on Twitter @FergusHanson.