Five years ago, Mother Jones did a riff on the famous ode, The Revolution Will Not Be Televised, be declaring, "the revolution will not be blogged." Mother Jones missed the point, of course, seeing social media as an extension of broadcast. The author of that particular polemic did not anticipate the incredible role that social media are having in both mobilizing the Iranian public, and revealing the corruption of the recent Iranian election. Clay Shirky chalks one up for Twitter in particular on this one, but it was SMS (how soon we forget thee) before that for the election of the late, former President of South Korea, Roh Moo-hyun, and mobilization of the populace to oust ex-Philippine President, Ferdinand Marcos. And, thinking way back to Tiananmen Square, the "social media" of choice (not to mention availability) for Chinese student dissidents was fax.
The revolution will be blogged, Facebooked, Twittered, and whatever-the-next-cool-way-to-connect-will-be-ed. And it's not just revolutions that will be revolutionary. The entirety of politics has already been revolutionized with the election of the first UCaPP President. Contemporary politicians view social media as merely another channel of broadcast at their peril.
In the meantime, my prayers and hopes are with the people of Iran, who truly deserve an honest democratic process to realize their aspirations as a free nation to be welcomed back to the global community.
[Technorati tags: iran | revolution | election]