Sunday, June 21, 2009

The Tweet, Mightier Than the Sword?

This week I've been completely startled by the rapid rise of Twitter in Iran. In some moments, it appears as if the very nature of journalism is shifting before our eyes.

Suddenly this strange little tool, a simple idea that no one had heard of a year or two ago, is helping people in a locked down state communicate words and images instantaneously to everyone else (including news agencies) around the globe. And it's beautiful.

The police in Iran are trying to crack down and take cameras and phones away from people and threaten them for speaking out and it's TOTALLY BACKFIRING.

Something historical is happening in Iran, and communication has forever changed. What are the implications of this?

Three months ago I would meet with authors who asked me with a laugh "What's the deal with Twitter?" Three weeks ago, authors have begun to tell me that they have started to Twittering. Now this free service with no revenue model is being asked by the State Department to stay online and delay updates so that the Iranian people can communicate with the outside world.

Amazing times. So how important is Twitter, this tool that people laughed at only months ago?


Pseudonymous High School Teacher said...

I've been resisting twitter as the blog is time consuming and I thought adding anything else would take even more of my writing time. But you have me rethinking.

T. Anne said...

I did read somewhere that there are a larger amount of Christians than we think in Iran. Perhaps this outcry is an answer to prayer.

Samuel D. Smith said...

It is really astonishing. And encouraging in many ways.

Robert Treskillard said...

It really is history in the making: using a new technology to try and force change in a culture like that.

We'll see what happens!

Thanks for posting!

Jesse Giglio said...

It gives me a bit of an underground railroad vibe or tom paine printing during the revolution. Just a strong viral movement.

Kate said...

How amazing, and how like miracles to arise in the most unexpected places.

Cami Checketts said...

Stories like this always reinforce how spoiled rotten I am, able to express myself anyway I please and I take it for granted.
I pray the Iranians will be blessed to break free of the tyranny.