Social media as a government propaganda tool in post-revolutionary Egypt

Sara El-Khalili

Abstract


Egypt’s netizens succeeded in mobilizing for the Revolution of 25 January using social media. The revolution which started as an event on the social networking site Facebook.com took the world by storm when Egyptians succeeded in overthrowing a dictator who ruled the country for almost three decades. For the past few years in Egypt, social media became a powerful tool used by citizens to uncover corruption, mobilize for protests, and act as real watchdog over the mainstream media and the government. Although social media have mostly been used by citizens as a platform for public opinion expression and mobilization, they have become important propaganda tools used by governments. In the case of Egypt, the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) which ruled Egypt for a transitional period of 16 months after Mubarak stepped down, realized the need to speak the same language of the Egyptian youth, to communicate with them electronically, as well as to issue counter–revolutionary propaganda. This paper will mainly focus on SCAF’s propaganda on the social networking Web site Facebook and the different propaganda techniques used in post–revolutionary Egypt.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5210/fm.v18i3.4620



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