India cracks down on social media
The fear towards the powers of social media has led certain governments to monitor their citizens’ Internet use more closely. In India, mass public protests in 2008 and 2010 coincided closely with Arab Spring revolutions. Thus, the Indian government began to implement strict Internet surveillance policies, jailing several political bloggers. The Indian government justifies its actions; however, these crackdowns have hindered the Indian people’s chance for realizing social change.
Shah, Fahad. “India cracks down on social media.” SocialistWorker.org. 19 April 2012. Web. 20 July 2012. <http://socialistworker.org/2012/04/19/india-cracks-down-on-social-media>.
China tightens grip on social media with new rules
The Chinese government already censors the Internet usage of its citizens. Now, in response to anti-government Internet posts and other actions via the web, the Chinese government has implemented more rules upon the popular Chinese social media site, Sina Weibo. Currently used by over 300 million Chinese citizens, Sina Weibo’s national influence is enormous. The new regulations posed by the government aim to prevent Internet posts that “spread rumors, disrupt social disorder, or destroy social stability.” The government already deletes individual comments or entire comment sections that it deems slanderous, so the new regulations would make social media revolutions in China nearly impossible.
Hunt, Katie. “China tightens grip on social media with new rules.” CNN. 28 May 2012. Web. 20 July 2012. <http://www.cnn.com/2012/05/28/world/asia/china-weibo-rules/index.html>.
The Political Power of Social Media
When the President of the Philippines, Joseph Estrada, was not impeached for his illegal actions, the people of the Philippines quickly formed a demonstration organized through text messaging. The public response was so large that the country’s legislators reversed their decision, allowing evidence against Estrada to be presented. Subsequently, by January 20, 2001, Estrada was impeached from office. This example illustrates that new media and technology are providing worldwide populations the tools to access information more easily and to spread public awareness quickly. The article briefly analyzes other international instances of social media’s role in revolutionary activities, and it closes by discussing new media’s remarkable power and influence on producing change.
Meier, Patrick. “The Political Power of Social Media.” iRevolution. 26 December 2010. Web. 27 July 2012. <http://irevolution.net/2010/12/26/political-power-of-social-media/>.