Home Quick Thoughts + Shares Conference Tweets on Egypt’s Democratic Transition

The (conference about the Egyptian) revolution will be tweeted! A full-day conference is being held today at Stanford’s Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law on the theme of “Democratic Transition in Egypt” and the proceedings will be tweeted. See below or follow @StanfordCDDRL and the hashtag #ARDEG (Arab Reform and Democracy – Egypt).

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  1. Though I think the academic outputs of Stanford’s Liberation Technology Center are admirable and its discourse important, it seems that the debate surrounding the use of technology in the Egyptian uprising continues to miss out on the most important stakeholders: Egyptians themselves. The inspiring events that have unfolded in Egypt are irresistible in academic debate. Discussions about Egypt’s future are important for hashing out the implications and opportunities of this critical stage. But it is important to question how an English-language conference held in California generate impact. Will outcomes and discussions be made available inside Egypt? Have conference coordinators worked to develop synergies with local initiatives? Or is this just another opportunity for academics in the West to fondle the hammer (http://www.engineroom.no/?p=306) and wax poetic about interesting developments in a far-flung country? And if that’s the case, well, okay then. But there is wide chasm between using Twitter to talk about talking about the revolution and using Twitter for revolution. And this misses an important opportunity to build bridges between digital discourses. The military’s most recent crackdown on free speech sent the Twitter sphere abuzz, but activists calling for the release of law professor Amr Shalakany (http://www.engineroom.no/?p=360) aren’t using #ARDEG to tag their posts.

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