Young Egyptians Use of Social Networks and the January 2011 Revolution
El Said, Ghada R.
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The 2011 Egyptian protests began on Tuesday 25 January in Tahrir, one of Cairo’s biggest squares. On January 25 and 26, the Egyptian government blocked Twitter in Egypt and later Face book was blocked as well. Most observers of the Egyptian scene at that time, claimed that the responsible governmental authorities did this, in an attempt to stop mobilization for anti-government protests. A report in March 2011 highlights a significant increase in the use of the Internet in Egypt in the wake of the January 25 protests. "A large increase in the number of web surfers and users of social networking sites reported to change the pattern of use and the interests of the of the Internet contents”. According to the report, the number of Internet users in Egypt prior to nuary 25 was 21.2 million users, increased by almost 9% after this date to reach 23.1 million in two months. The time Egyptian users spent online was doubled from 900 to 1800 minutes per months after 25 January 2011. Still, Egypt's Internet penetration rate is less than 25%. This paper investigates cultural issues in human computer interaction. The paper explores the specific xperiences of young Egyptian Internet users and their interaction through social media during and after the Egyptian protest in 25 January 2011. The paper aims to reveal some the cultural characteristics of this user group in interacting with the Internet.
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