For someone who sat on the sidelines cheering on the revolution of 12 months ago and who still wishes to see Egyptians achieve all they dream of for their country, the film ‘The Arab Awakening – Tweets from Tahrir’, from Al Jazeera English is moving and inspirational. It is part of a series of illuminating documentaries about the revolutionary movements in Libya, Tunisia and Egypt. I cannot recommend Tweets from Tahrir highly enough – you must watch it.
And if you haven’t yet read a copy of the book that informed the documentary, the excellent (and also-named) Tweets from Tahrir – compiled from real-time tweets and pictures sent by activists and participants as events in the Square unfolded and edited by Alex Nunns and Nadia Idle – be sure to rectify that immediately.
The Egyptian revolution famously became known as the first Twitter revolution. Both the film and the book show how that happened, although as blogger and activist Tarek Shalaby notes in the film, if the revolutionaries hadn’t had Twitter, they would have used something else! Still, this is a demonstration of how to use social media for something more lasting than the dissemination of memes and LOLZ. Let’s hope it can be followed in other squares before too long.