In Chapter 3, “Kullens Khaled Said,” Ghonim writes about how he was first inspired to take up the revolutionary cause, and how this original inspiration influenced the means by which he pursued this goal in terms of a media campaign. Upon looking at the picture of the severely beaten young man, Ghonim felt a kinship that he translated into this campaign by hiding his identity so as not to bias the message, using the first-person in his Facebook posts, and using colloquial, informal structure of the Egyptian language; these deliberate choices was emotionally grabbing to his audience, which connected his cause to each and every Egyptian who had felt oppressed. Another important aspect of Ghonim’s effort was education, collaboration with other similarly focused groups, and use of visualizations which depicted the atrocities of the oppression along with verbal accounts. In terms of Ghonim’s efforts, Facebook and the Internet were absolutely critical tools to reach people within their homes and bring the issue into a personal space. All the methods Ghonim utilized are aspects which contribute to a successful online media campaign; procuring an emotional response and then reinforcing that response with facts is critical to the success of encouraging participation on any issue.
Do you participate in activism online? What kind of role does Facebook play in how you express your opinion on issues that are important to you?
Do you believe the Internet does more to connect individuals around causes, or to create a sense of detachment surrounding issues?